The 2011 offseason was one to forget for the Eagles. That was their infamous “Dream Team” offseason where they went out and signed several big-name free agents, as they hoped to make a run at a Super Bowl following back-to-back double-digit winning seasons.
Head coach Andy Reid and the front office were tired of coming up short in the playoffs and decided to fill as many holes as possible with the best players they could.
Some of the players who had fans stoked included defensive end Jason Babin, defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins, cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, return man Johnnie Lee Higgins, tight end Donald Lee and former New York Giants slot receiver Steve Smith.
The prized free agent was cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha, who was considered an elite shutdown defender while with the Oakland Raiders. They also had one of the better backup quarterbacks in Vince Young, who coined the term “Dream Team” for this group.
Nearly every player above flamed out immediately, but there was one name signed that offseason who became a star for the Eagles — Evan Mathis. The little-known guard spent time with the Carolina Panthers, the Miami Dolphins the and Cincinnati Bengals before signing a one-year deal with the Eagles.
Once in the City of Brotherly Love, Mathis won a starting job, earned a long-term extension and even made two Pro Bowl appearances as well.
Mathis ended up spending four seasons with the team and started 56 games for them at left guard. His name is often forgotten about when discussing the failed 2011 offseason, but he proved that sometimes the best moves are the ones that don’t make the biggest splash.