Ranking Philadelphia Eagles linebackers after NFL Draft
The reputation precedes them and for good reason. You’ve heard it said at least 200 times, so one more won’t hurt, right? The Philadelphia Eagles haven’t taken a linebacker in the first round of any NFL Draft since they selected Jerry Robinson out of UCLA in 1979.
Seasons change. Coaches have changed for the Birds, especially since the close of the 2012 run, but whether it’s been Chip Kelly or Doug Pederson at the helm, this franchise hasn’t put any stock in the linebacker position in ages. Heck, now, when you think about it, Andy Reid had a bit of a revolving door too.
With a new regime comes defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon and new linebackers coach Nick Rallis. We’ll have to wait and see what they roll out, but in the meantime, here’s a power ranking of the Philadelphia Eagles’ linebacker corps as it’s currently constructed.
Here’s a ranking of the Philadelphia Eagles linebackers now that the draft is over.
1. Eric Wilson: After joining the Eagles’ roster on April 14th, Eric Wilson edges Alex Singleton slightly due to his knowledge of the scheme he’s joining Philly to play in. He and the defensive coordinator, Jonathan Gannon, spent the 2017 season together in Minneapolis, and he’ll get his opportunities to be successful.
2. Alex Singleton: There weren’t many reasons for the Philadelphia Eagles fans to smile in 2020, but Alex Singleton was one of them. He vowed to break the franchise record for tackles in 2021, and now, with a 17th game, there’s no reason to believe he can’t do so.
3. T.J. Edwards: This is someone who has shown he can play when given an opportunity. T.J. Edwards was having a decent season in 2020 before getting injured. Keep both eyes on him in 2021.
4. JaCoby Stevens (maybe): Though JaCoby Stevens played safety with the LSU Tigers, this sixth-rounder is listed as an Eagles rookie linebacker. There’s no telling how Gannon will deploy his guys at the second level, but whatever he decides to do, Stevens should excel with proper coaching.
5. Patrick Johnson:
You’ve heard this before. It deserves another mention. Patrick Johnson holds Tulane’s record for sacks. Well, Derek Barnett broke Reggie White’s sack record at Tennessee too, but you get the idea. Anyone that has something like that on their resume is worth noting.
6. Shaun Bradley: If anything this young man did at Temple begins to translate, the Birds may have something, but he’s looking up at least five guys on the depth chart.
7. Davion Taylor: From the start, investing a third-round selection in a guy that didn’t play high school ball and had zero interceptions and two sacks in 24 career games at the collegiate level seemed like a reach. After watching Davion Tayor look lost for most of the 32 snaps he took the field for (that’s three percent of the team’s total), now, the pick seems twice as disappointing.
8. Rashad Smith: After going undrafted in 2020, Rashad Smith has already seen three NFL teams. He also has three total tackles on his resume. He’ll need one heck of a training camp and preseason (and maybe an injury or two to occur) or he’ll wind up on a fourth roster by September at the latest.
9. Joe Bachie: Not much is known about Joe Bacchie other than his name. Like Smith, he went undrafted in 2020. Like Smith, he has one of the toughest uphill climbs to make the roster.