A breakdown of the Philadelphia Eagles' 2019 free-agent signings.
Malik Jackson, defensive tackle
What it means: The Eagles have one of the most potent defensive tackle duos in the NFL with Jackson joining Fletcher Cox. Cox consistently commands double-teams, but the decision will not be so easy for offensive coordinators with the presence of Jackson, who had eight sacks in 2017 and has averaged five quarterback takedowns over the past six seasons.
What's the risk: The Eagles have no shortage of veteran players on sizable contracts and have just added another. Jackson's deal is expected to be three years and worth $30 million, per ESPN's Adam Schefter. The going rate for quality defensive tackles at $10 million per season lines up with the type of money Star Lotulelei and Linval Joseph received the past couple of years. It's a significant investment, but the Eagles are big on investing heavily in their offensive and defensive fronts.
Vinny Curry, defensive end
The Eagles have signed Curry to a one-year deal. Here's a closer look at the defensive end who spent the past season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
What it means: It's an offseason of reunions for the Eagles, who followed up the re-acquisition of DeSean Jackson by bringing Curry back into the fold. He was selected by the Eagles in the second round of the 2012 NFL draft and played his first six seasons in Philly, including during the team's title run in 2017. Defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz knows exactly what he's getting: a solid rotational end who will hold up against the run and make some plays in the backfield.
What's the risk: Chris Long has not committed publicly to playing in 2019. One priority that will factor into his decision is playing time. The defensive end group is getting a bit crowded with Brandon Graham, Derek Barnett and Curry all in line for meaningful snaps. And it's another move for a player with some miles on him, just like Graham (30), DeSean Jackson (32), Malik Jackson (29) and Andrew Sendejo (31). They're adding age to an already veteran-laden roster.
L.J. Fort, linebacker
The Eagles have agreed to terms with Fort on a three-year deal. It includes $1.9 million in guarantees and can be worth up to $10 million, according to Jeremy Fowler. Here's a closer look at the linebacker who spent the previous four seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
What it means: The Eagles get some much-needed linebacker depth. With Jordan Hicks leaving for the Cardinals in free agency, Philly needs to bolster a group that currently includes Nigel Bradham, Kamu Grugier-Hill, Paul Worrilow and Nathan Gerry. Fort played 300 snaps on defense, primarily in a third-down role. He played inside in Pittsburgh’s 3-4 defense and has outside linebacker in his background.
What's the risk: At worst, the Eagles get a quality special teams player who adds depth. At best, Fort will carve out a role on defense and be a contributor in that capacity. With just three career starts in six seasons, the Eagles can’t rely on Fort to fill the current void left by Hicks.
Ronald Darby, cornerback
The Eagles have agreed to terms with Darby on a one-year deal worth up to $8.5 million, according to Adam Schefter. Here's a closer look at the cornerback who has played 17 games for the Eagles over the past two seasons.
What it means: The Eagles get some insurance at corner while the 25-year old Darby, who suffered an ACL tear in November, gets a chance to increase his value for 2020. The Eagles have some young talent in the secondary, a group that includes Jalen Mills, Sidney Jones, Avonte Maddox and Rasul Douglas. With 45 NFL starts under his belt, Darby brings some experience to the table and will be part of what should be a fascinating competition at corner.
What's the risk: It's no sure bet that Darby will be at full force by the start of the season. He has had two significant injuries in as many years for the Eagles -- he dislocated his ankle in 2017 as well. It's fair to question whether they should continue to invest in a player who has missed 15 games over the past two seasons.
Andrew Sendejo, safety
The Eagles have agreed to terms with Sendejo on a one-year deal. Here's a closer look at the move.
What it means: The Eagles add safety depth behind Malcolm Jenkins and Rodney McLeod. Sendejo, 31, has appeared in 99 career games, racking up over 400 tackles and 31 passes defensed over that time. He could deployed in the Eagles' "big nickel" look, featuring three safeties, which defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz uses a fair amount.
What's the risk: Sendejo appeared in only five games last season because of a groin injury. Entering his 10th season, his best playing days appear behind him, and it is questionable whether he could step in as an effective cover safety should one of the starters go down.