New Philadelphia Eagles DE Ryan Kerrigan is loving Philly’s atmosphere

Ryan Kerrigan, Philadelphia Eagles (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Ryan Kerrigan, Philadelphia Eagles (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

There are certain names that will drive you absolutely insane if you’re a Philadelphia Eagles fan. Jason Witten was the owner of one. If he wasn’t running wild at Lincoln Financial Field with his helmet off, he was hauling in game-winning touchdown passes in primetime football games versus the Birds.

Aren’t you glad he’s gone? No one would blame you if you were.

Once upon a time, actually it was as recent as last season, Ryan Kerrigan was just one of those names. Gosh, he was annoying. In 19 career games versus the Birds, Philly normally came out on top (they were 10-9 versus Washington in games where Kerrigan suited up), but no one ever left, fans or players, feeling like they had an easy day.

As a matter of fact, for his career, Kerrigan’s notched 63 total tackles versus the Philadelphia Eagles, and while that includes 51 of the solo variety and 15 that have resulted in a loss of yardage, it doesn’t include the 13.5 sacks, the 24 additional quarterback hits, his six forced fumbles, or an interception he snagged on September 10th of 2017.

Yep, Kerrigan’s been a pain for a long time, but here’s the good news. He’s finally joined the good guys, and it looks like he’s enjoying himself and the guys are enjoying him. Halapoulivaati Vaitai probably still has nightmares of his first start from time to time, but it’s good to know there are no hard feelings in the locker room.

The new Philadelphia Eagles DE is loving Philly’s atmosphere.

On the final Friday of July, following the Philadelphia Eagles’ third practice of another training camp, Kerrigan spent ten minutes with the Philly media. Among the topics were, of course, defense, veteran presence, and how many 30-year-olds are on the roster (there are ten by the way and three other guys who are 29), but Kerrigan, a guy we haven’t discussed much as of late, seems very happy with his new digs.

Here’s some of what he had to say:

"Despite being in Washington for ten years, it doesn’t really feel weird. You know, the guys have been super welcoming to me. Really, everyone around the building has been. It’s been a fun couple of days so far getting going with training camp. I’m glad that we’re getting started. Let’s get back to ball."

This feels good, doesn’t it? No, seriously. Philly might screw up the skill positions in the draft (no disrespect to DeVonta Smith and Miles Sanders), but they do a pretty good job of finding defensive linemen and EDGE guys in free agency or through trades. Think of Connor Barwin, Hugh Douglas, Michael Bennett, and Chris Long if you need a few examples.

Kerrigan’s addition to this roster feels like the next ingenious move in that trend. Sure, he’s a little long in the tooth as opposed to what we remember when Philadelphia Eagles fans first met him, but when you think about the fact that he’ll probably be used rotationally in pass-rushing situations, how can you not get excited?

Kerrigan’s addition, as well as other key defensive additions like that of Steven Nelson, Eric Wilson, and Anthony Harris (we won’t even mention what they did in the draft), should lead you all to one very real conclusion. This defensive unit could be very, very special in 2021.