Over the course of this week, we'll be taking a look at each of the teams within the NFC East and exactly what each has been up to through the first week of free agency.
Up first? The reigning NFC East champions, the Philadelphia Eagles.
Last year: 10-6, first place in NFC East
How season ended: Philly was eliminated from the playoffs in the first round, falling to the New Orleans Saints.
2013 storyline: In his first season coaching in the NFL, Chip Kelly’s high-powered offense didn’t disappoint as Philly bounced back from a dismal 2013 to finish first in the division. Lesean McCoy established himself as one of the leagues best, capturing his first rushing title. Desean Jackson returned to form and Nick Foles showed the potential to be the franchise quarterback Philadelphia has longed for since Donovan McNabb was traded to Washington.
Free agent losses: With many players under contract, Philly hasn’t lost much from last year’s team. Clifton Geathers, who signed with the Redskins, remains the lone notable subtraction. Kurt Coleman, Michael Vick, Colt Anderson and Phillip Hunt are still free agents and at least Vick has made it known a return to Philly is not out of the question.
Additions: With nearly $30 million in cap space, Philadelphia went to work prior to free agency making sure not to lose its own. The Eagles re-signed Riley Cooper, Donnie Jones, Jason Kelce, Jeremy Maclin, Cedric Thorton and Nate Allen. In free agency, Philadelphia shied away from the Jarius Byrd sweepstakes and elected to sign Malcom Jenkins, instead. Nolan Carroll, Bryan Braman and Chris Maragos also signed with the Birds. Philadelphia acquired Darren Sproles from New Orleans via trade.
Still need: The Eagles could still use some secondary help, along with a pass rusher. Rumors circulated that the team was interested in Demarcus Ware’s services before the DE/OLB signed with Denver. Expect the team to focus on both areas in the draft, along with depth.
Outlook: Philadelphia added to an already explosive offense by adding Sproles and attacked its biggest issue on defense by signing Jenkins. Not to mention, re-signing both Cooper and Maclin is just icing on the cake for fans in the City of Brotherly Love. If the team can add a pass rusher in the draft, Philly may be the favorite in the East.
Grade thus far: A