The Philadelphia Eagles have called it quits with their offseason linebacker acquisition, L.J. Fort.
When the NFL Free Agency period opened up this past spring, the Philadelphia Eagles were on the ball. They filled some voids by adding Malik Jackson in the mix with a three-year deal. Then, they brought defensive end Brandon Graham back with a fairly large deal as well.
However, everybody was mostly intrigued by seeing how the Eagles address the linebacker situation. Were they going to bring back Jordan Hicks? Or were they going to try and sign a big name like CJ Mosley? Rumor had it that the Eagles were in on Mosley, but the interest was not high. Therefore, they had no shot at landing him.
Instead, Philly elected to go with a cheaper option in former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker L.J. Fort. While the signing was surely more about special teams, the contract numbers indicated that Fort was expected to be so much more for the Eagles.
Fort did a nice job during the preseason, but so did undrafted free agent, T.J. Edwards. Once the undrafted prospect made the team, it felt like it was only a matter of time before the Eagles decide to move on from Fort. Sure enough, four weeks into the season, Fort is set to take on the free agency market once again. He’s not bitter though. In fact, Fort left the Eagles with nothing but good things to say about them.
Fort’s farewell to Philly
What went wrong between Fort and the Philadelphia Eagles? Well, the answer is unclear. From the outside looking in, he just simply got beat out by a much cheaper option. With the Eagles employing proven veterans such as Nigel Bradham, Zach Brown, and even Kamu Grugier-Hill, Fort had to battle it out with Nate Gerry and T.J. Edwards basically.
On defense, the Eagles seem to be quite fond of Gerry as a depth option. And with Grugier-Hill back in the mix, Fort takes yet another backseat on the depth chart. Then, on special teams, Fort and Edwards almost played the same amount of snaps.
Considering that Fort costs a lot more than Edwards at this point, there really wasn’t any reason for the Eagles to hold onto the veteran. It’s unfortunate that it never worked out, but at least Fort will now have the opportunity to pick up elsewhere as the Eagles continue to get stronger at the linebacker position with Grugier-Hill back in the mix.