Eagles

Eagles

Howie Roseman season is off to a fast start. 

It looks like the Eagles have found their new defensive tackle next to Fletcher Cox after that position was not nearly productive enough in 2018. They are reportedly expected to sign Malik Jackson. 

The deal was initially reported by ESPN as three years, $10 million, which would have been ridiculous. Still, even at $10 million per season, this will greatly improve the Eagles’ defensive line. 

And since it’s a relatively short deal, this shouldn’t prevent the Eagles from using a draft pick early during this great defensive line draft class. 

Jackson, 29, was recently cut by the Jaguars, who saved $11 million by making the move. Coincidentally, the Jaguars probably cut Jackson to make some room to sign Nick Foles. 

The important thing to note about Jackson is that because he was released, the Eagles don’t have to wait until Wednesday to sign him. The league year begins at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, which is when teams can sign pending free agents, but because Jackson is on the street, he’s fair game. And because he was cut, he also wouldn’t count against the compensatory pick formula. The Eagles have become very intrigued with that in recent years. 

Jackson made it through just three seasons of his six-year, $85.5 million deal in Jacksonville. He made his only Pro Bowl team in 2017, when he piled up a career-high eight sacks. 

The Eagles have already decided they won’t pick up Tim Jernigan’s option for 2019, which will save them $7 million in cap space. But without Jernigan, they needed to find a replacement. They do that nicely with Jackson. 

 

Here’s a look at the Eagles’ possible starting defensive line in 2019: Brandon Graham, Fletcher Cox, Jackson and Derek Barnett. Even with a rotation in place, that’s a really solid starting defensive line. 

After rotating through Haloti Ngata, Destiny Vaeao, Treyvon Hester and then eventually Jernigan in 2018, the Eagles will definitely be happy to have a more consistent threat next to Cox. Just the ability to beat a 1-on-1 will be really important next to Cox, who has turned into one of the best defensive players in the league. The Eagles hope they have that in Jackson. 

Cox seems to approve. 

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