Friday, February 29, 2008

Player in the market? Some suggestions

By Jeff Glauser
The Phanatic Magazine

Asante Samuel? Impressive (unless your name is Brown or Sheppard).

Chris Clemons? Actually, not a bad under-the-radar decision.

If both of them come to fruition, it’s certainly a good start to a critical offseason, where many fans are expecting the Eagles to do whatever it takes to prove that the Renaissance period in this franchise’s history has not officially expired – and that the quest for the elusive Super Bowl is still in the immediate plans.

Here are just a few names we should hope to hear about, as the Eagles continue (we hope) to make the plunge into free agency:

(Plus - and here’s the bonus - none of the following should break the bank, either.)

Bobby McCray, DE, Jaguars: Sure, he’s coming off a sub-par season, where he fell out of favor with Head Coach Jack Del Rio. But he’s also just a year removed from a breakout 10-sack, 2006 campaign. He’s got good size (6'6'', 261) and is only 26. A change of scenery might do him some good and help add some much-needed depth behind presumed starters Trent Cole and Juqua Thomas.

Gibril Wilson, SS, Giants: This one isn’t a reach – the rumor mill indicates the Birds are, indeed, interested. And they should be. First, very few are convinced that there is a proven starter at strong safety already on the roster. Sean Considine has not impressed when he’s had the opportunity to play and Quentin Mikell, though solid, isn’t necessarily a game changer – and is probably best utilized as the Eagles’ main man on special teams coverage. Wilson makes plays – four interceptions and close to 100 tackles last year is not too shabby. And this secondary is currently one living on a fading reputation.

Bubba Franks, TE, Packers: Yes, L.J. Smith was just franchised. But who here is confident that the injury-proned and butter-fingered Smith will finally live up to his potential? Franks, although older and now somewhat injury-proned himself, at least provides a veteran presence who is sure-handed and willing to do the dirty work.

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