Jim Schwartz believes Tim Jernigan could provide element Eagles were missing

Jim Schwartz believes Tim Jernigan could provide element Eagles were missing

It seemed odd when the Eagles didn't seem to make much of an effort during free agency to keep defensive tackle Bennie Logan, who played at a consistent level for them during his four years in Philly.

It doesn't seem so odd anymore.

Logan went on to sign a one-year, $8 million deal with the Chiefs on March 13, and three weeks later the Eagles replaced him with Tim Jernigan, who they acquired from the Ravens as part of a swap of third-round picks.

Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz said Tuesday that Jernigan is actually a better fit for the Eagles than Logan because of his superior pass-rush skills.

He made sure to praise Logan but also made it clear that he believes Jernigan and Fletcher Cox will complement each other in a way that Logan and Cox did not.

Jernigan has 13 sacks in 43 career games. Logan has 5½ sacks in 59 career games.

“It’s just a different type of player," Schwartz said. "It’s not a dig at Bennie. Bennie played good football for us. But they’re different style players and I think that as a complement to Fletch, Jernigan has some [different] things.

"Jernigan might be able to complement him a little bit better. He’s really good in the pass rush. Maybe he’s as good as Bennie in the running game, maybe he’s not. But both of them are good players. Both of them have had a high level of success in the NFL. It’s just that they’re different styles.

"But I like what Timmy showed in camp and his ability to win those 1-on-1s. He’s slippery. He’s hard for those guards to handle. He made a significant impact as a pass rusher."

Cox had four sacks the first month of last season but just 2½ the last 12 games, and Schwartz said that was because opposing teams began double-teaming him more. He indicated that he expects Jernigan to have more success taking advantage of the opportunities he gets with Cox doubled than Logan did.

“He’s really hard to handle inside," Schwartz said. "Last year, when Fletch had such a good start, that first month, teams adjusted and they started taking him away, and we didn’t win enough 1-on-1s away from him because that other tackle got the 1-on-1s.

"Well, that happened in OTAs, and Timmy’s able to get that pressure."

Schwartz even said he expects Jernigan to make a bigger impact on the Eagles' pass rush than either rookie first-round pick Derek Barnett or veteran free agent Chris Long.

"It was a big acquisition for us and I think that’ll affect our pass rush as much as bringing a first-round draft pick or veteran player into the mix," he said.

The Eagles, who were expected to have one of the NFL's top pass-rush units a year ago, finished the season tied for 16th in the NFL with 34 sacks.

They ranked third in the league after four games with 14 sacks. But over the last 12 weeks of the season, they had just 20 — third fewest in the league during that span.

Schwartz believes having two tackles that have varied skill sets will help free up Cox and make the defensive line more dangerous. 

“It’s always ideal to have guys who complement each other," he said. "When I was in Detroit, it was (Nick) Fairley and (Ndamukong) Suh. One was stronger, one was a little quicker. Tennessee, I had Tony Brown and Albert Haynesworth. Buffalo, it was Marcel Dareus and Kyle Williams.

"Good players are good players, but it does help to have those complementary guys. But that’s anywhere. It could be safety, it could be corner, it could be defensive tackle. There’s something to be said for the total being greater than the sum of the parts.”

Torrey Smith says Carson Wentz is going to get PAID

USA Today Images

Torrey Smith says Carson Wentz is going to get PAID

We all know just how good Carson Wentz is. Heck, the entire NFL knows just how good Wentz is after the Eagles' QB put together a remarkable season with 3,296 passing yards and 33 TD tosses ... in just 13 games.

But we and the entire league also know what that means: Wentz is going to get a lot more zeros added to his paycheck soon.

Wideout Torrey Smith, recently traded by the Eagles to the Panthers, knows full well what Wentz's worth is and isn't shy to talk about it, as he did at his charity basketball event in Maryland on Saturday evening.

"When Carson's time comes, they're going to need a Brinks truck the size of this arena," Smith, who caught 33 balls for 692 yards and two TDs from Wentz last season, told ESPN's Jamison Hensley while noting the Eagles are taking full advantage of Wentz's discounted rookie deal right now.

Wentz is in the middle of a four-year, $26.6 million deal signed after he was drafted No. 2 overall in 2016. The deal expires after the 2019 season, but obviously Howie Roseman and crew know this all is looming. And they also know recent QB contract numbers have continued to skyrocket.

San Francisco recently made Jimmy Garrapollo, he of seven career starts but also of five straight wins to end last season after his trade from New England, the richest QB in league history with a five-year, $137.5 million deal. Detroit gave Matthew Stafford a five-year, $135 million deal prior to last season, a few months after Oakland gave Derek Carr a five-year, $125 million extension. Those three are the top-paid QBs in the league.

Long story short: With the way Wentz has performed with 7,049 passing yards and 49 TDs in 29 career starts, he's going to get PAID.

And Roseman's acts of salary cap magic are going to have to continue because Wentz is going to get paid sooner than later, and the whole league knows it.

Vinny Curry reportedly heading to the Buccaneers

USA Today Images

Vinny Curry reportedly heading to the Buccaneers

One day after being released from the Eagles, Vinny Curry has reportedly already found a new home.

The defensive end is heading to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on a three-year deal worth up to $27 million, with an $11.5 million injury guarantee, according to ESPN's Jenna Laine.

After signing him to a five-year, $47.25 million extension in 2016, the Eagles moved on from Curry and his scheduled $11 million cap hit on Friday. The transaction saved the Eagles $5 million in cap space, with $6 million in dead money.

While Curry, 29, had the best season of his career in 2017, his production still didn't match his high cap number and he became more expendable after the Eagles acquired Pro Bowler Michael Bennett from the Seahawks.

Curry will join former Eagles defensive tackle Beau Allen in Tampa Bay. Allen signed a three-year, $15 million deal with the Buccaneers earlier in the week.