3 free-agency moves from rival NFC East teams that should terrify Eagles fans

Is the NFC East still a two-team divisional race?

Carolina Panthers v Jacksonville Jaguars
Carolina Panthers v Jacksonville Jaguars / Courtney Culbreath/GettyImages

For the most part, it's been an active offseason for the NFC East.

Whether it was Saquon Barkley staying in the division, the Giants trading for arguably the best available edge rusher, or whoever Washington takes at quarterback in next month's draft, the division has, perhaps unsurprisingly, stayed front and center in the news since the offseason began back in February. The Cowboys are the only team that hasn't done much, but they're the Cowboys, so it's not like anyone's going to forget about them.

Since things will stay relatively quiet – at least, as quiet as the NFL calendar can really be – until the Draft kicks off in April, now's a good time to take a look back at how the division has been reshaped so far.

These are the three NFC North free agent moves that should probably terrify Eagles fans, at least a little bit.

Washington Commanders

Signing LB Frankie Luvu

NFC East teams should probably be losing sleep about Washington's linebackers at this point. By bringing in both Luvu and former Seahawks great Bobby Wagner, the Commanders will go into next season with two of Pro Football Focus' top 10 linebackers from 2023.

If you want to be skeptical about how much longer Wagner, 33, can play at an elite level, we won't stop you – but Luvu, who's only 27, has been quietly ascending as one of the league's best linebackers over the last 3-4 years. Last season, in his first season of 17 starts, Luvu set a career-high in tackles (125), forced fumbles (2), and QB hits (11).

He had his 2nd-best overall PFF grade (80.0) while ending with the best coverage (67.6) and pass rush (90.1) grades of his career to boot. The Commanders finished 2023 with one of the worst run defenses in football – league-wide, they were 27th in yards allowed and 17th in touchdowns – so fixing that as quickly as they did should make Eagles, Cowboys, and Giants fans nervous.

New York Giants

Trading for Brian Burns

What was it about the NFC East this year that attracted basically every sneaky-good player from the Panthers? Burns has a little more notoriety than Luvu, with the Carolina edge rusher making two Pro Bowls over the last three seasons.

Burns doesn't miss time – he's played in at least 16 games in all but one season of his career, when he played in 15 – and consistently puts up elite numbers. He already has 46 sacks in just five years, with eight in every season besides his rookie year, when he had 7.5. Now that Burns joins Dexter Lawrence, who was PFF's #1 interior defensive lineman last year, and
Kayvon Thibodeaux, who had a career-best 11.5 sacks last season, the Giants have one of the premier defensive lines in football.

Only three teams had less sacks than New York did last season, so adding Burns made all the sense in the world. He's also only 25 and is under contract for the next five years, so he's officially the Eagles' problem for the foreseeable future.

Dallas Cowboys

Signing Eric Kendricks (Maybe?)

This one is a little bit tougher because the Cowboys haven't really done anything this offseason -- like at all.

Their biggest signing was bringing former Chargers linebacker Eric Kendricks, which isn't exactly top-of-the-fold news, especially for a team like the Cowboys. To his credit, Kendricks was good last year – even at 32, he finished among Pro Football Focus' 25 best linebackers, and he has plenty of experience playing for new defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer from their time together in Minnesota.

But still, it's not like bringing in Kendricks is going to make or break their season, even if he's a much-needed upgrade in their linebacker room. Losing guys like Stephon Gilmore and Tyron Smith hurts, but maybe this is them trying to slowly but surely get younger?

To be honest, it's hard to see what they're doing. They have Dak, though, so they'll be good enough regardless.