STAY OR GO: The Linebackers

The Eagles linebacker group was the cheapest and by far the worst in the NFL last season. Their struggles led to the downfall of the Eagles once proud record of being the best team against the run, and they were regularly torched by tight ends. With a new defensive coaching staff with the team this year, they will have some interesting decisions to make.


Nate Gerry


Gerry was one of the main villains of the 2020 season. Despite his constant struggles against the run and covering receivers, Jim Schwartz stuck with the former-fifth round pick. His season ended early due to injury, and the Eagles linebacker play did improve.


Verdict: GO. There is no reason for the Eagles to keep Gerry. They decided against franchise tagging him, and with the tape, he showed last year, it is hard to reason with keeping him. His time in Philly will come to an end as he is an unrestricted free agent.


Duke Riley


The Eagles traded for Riley a couple of years ago. Riley impressed the coaching staff very quickly and became a special teams captain. Despite his play on special teams, his defensive performances were below par as he was a big contributor in the Eagles linebacker struggles.


Verdict: GO. Riley is an unrestricted free agent, and it is hard to see them extend him. They already have four linebackers contracted on the team that will be on the roster in 2021, and his play on defense does not warrant a new deal.


Alex Singleton


Singleton was the unsung hero of the 2020 season. His performances helped revitalise the linebacker core, and he was one of the best players for the Eagles. Singleton shone in the win over the San Francisco 49ers with a pick-six, and he also had impressive stats. He started 11 games, had 120 total tackles, two fumble recovers, two sacks and five tackles for loss as he became a mainstay on the Eagles defense.


Verdict: STAY. The Eagles must keep Singleton. Not just because of his play last season, but because he is owed less than $1 million. He is proof that hard work can go a long way, and he is the fighting underdog that Philadelphians will love. His contract runs out after 2021, so he will be playing for his future next season.


TJ Edwards


Edwards played in his second season for the Eagles last year and once again impressed. He now has two years of NFL experience which will be vital heading into 2021. He started 12 games in 2020 and had a pair of sacks and forced fumbles to add to his resume.


Verdict: STAY. Similarly to Singleton, Edwards has proven to be a solid linebacker in the NFL and is on a cheap contract. Depending on what the Eagles do in the draft, he could be starting once again next season. Edwards is also out of contract after the season. So expect he and Singleton to be playing at 110% on every snap.