Philadelphia Eagles: Arguments for and against pursuing JJ Watt

J.J. Watt #99, Houston Texans, Lane Johnson #65, Philadelphia Eagles (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)
J.J. Watt #99, Houston Texans, Lane Johnson #65, Philadelphia Eagles (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images) /
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Philadelphia Eagles
J.J. Watt (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images) /

This may not be a fit for the Philadelphia Eagles financially or schematically.

While the positives of adding Watt are obvious, the same can be said about the negatives. On March 22nd of 2021, he turns 32 years old. That’s almost ancient for an NFL defensive end. He’s also going to be one of the league’s more expensive veterans, something no Eagles fan wants to think about anymore.

Watt also spent a lot of time in a 3-4 defensive scheme as opposed to the 4-3 style the Birds have employed since Jim Schwartz walked into the NovaCare Compex and re-introduced it to a team that had been running a 3-4 under Chip Kelly.

There isn’t a football team on Planet Earth that wouldn’t benefit from Watt’s inclusion. He’d overtake just about everyone the Birds currently have on their roster at the edge position (no disrespect to Brandon Graham of course), and he would immediately sit at the top of the depth chart.

Here are a few things to consider, however. He’s only played a full season twice since 2015. One of those seasons was indeed in 2020, and though Watt amassed 52 total tackles, an interception, and five sacks, those aren’t the numbers we’d expect from someone with Watt’s ability.

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Has Father Time caught up with him? Only time will tell, but here’s what we can say definitively. When all things are considered, the smarter play for Philly might be using the financial resources required to land the future Hall of Famer and add several prospects who are younger as opposed to placing so many eggs in a free agent’s basket. It sure would be fun to watch him and Lane Johnson go at it in practice though. We’ll have to wait and see what happens.