|One player the Eagles must try to keep is CB Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie. (US Presswire)|
But the Eagles also need to upgrade their secondary and their offensive line, and even though the secondary is in more need of repair, there’s a much better chance the Eagles will use their first-round draft pick, No. 4 overall, on an offensive linemen (like Texas A&M’s Luke Joeckel, for example), especially since there aren’t any QBs out there worthy of such a high selection.
No matter what happens, the new coach and his staff are going to have their work cut out for them, and here’s a look at who they need to keep and where they need to improve in 2013:
- CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie: He didn't play as well as expected this past season, but he was still the Eagles' best coverage CB and he did play better after the Eagles junked the wide-9 formation at the end of the year. Plus, the Eagles don't have anybody waiting in the wings, so they need to bring DRC back, but at a reasonable salary.
- S Colt Anderson: Special teams coverage was a problem for the Eagles, with one notable exception -- Anderson, their special teams MVP. He didn't play well when given a chance to start at SS, but his special teams contributions shouldn't be overlooked. Plus, he won't cost much.
- Safety: Nate Allen is a second-round pick who played like a seventh-round pick and Kurt Coleman is a seventh-round pick who played like a seventh-round pick. In today’s NFL. the safeties are supposed to be play-makers and game-changers, but the Eagles’ starters finished with just two interceptions, both by Coleman. The Eagles need an impact player at this position and right now they don’t have one.
- Cornerback: The Eagles were supposed to have the best CB tandem in the NFL with former Pro Bowl selections Nnamdi Asomugha and Rodgers-Cromartie, but they were big-time busts. Now the new coach has to decide if he wants to stick with them and hope that a new defensive coordinator or new system will revitalize them, but something has to be done to upgrade this critical position.
- Offensive tackle: The Eagles will get All-Pro OT Jason Peters back next season after he missed all of 2012 with a ruptured Achilles tendon. But if they use their No. 4 overall pick on an OT (like Texas A&M’s Luke Joeckel, for example) they could move RT Todd Herremans back to guard and strengthen two positions with one move.