Marcus Smith will go down as one of the Eagles strangest draft turnouts. After being selected in the first round during the 2014 draft, many expected him to add to an already improving Eagles Pass rush…many were wrong.
Now there were some issues in 2014 regarding his injury status and in 2015 a hamstring problem only made things worse. But in week 5 something changed..he made a play. Marcus Smith…made a play. He used his 4.7 second 40-yard dash time to burst off the edge and hit Quarterback Drew Brees in what was easily the best play of his short career…mainly because there aren’t really many other contenders.
As you can see, Smith is an absolute terror in the trenches…if the trenches were those being fought in at home when he’s playing Call of Duty.
Joking aside, Smith has all the credentials to be a solid linebacker but has never contributed on special teams and left very little reason for the Eagles to list him as active on gameday.
It’s largely debatable that had Barwin not gone out previously, Smith may not have played a snap against the Saints, but for what seems like the 14th time, he has one last chance.
Connor Barwin is listed as probable following a quad injury sustained last week and with Jordan Hicks sidelined, Smith may…just may see an increase in snaps..and he needs it.
Many expected Kelly to release Smith at the beginning of this off-season and prior to last week, his chances weren’t exactly sky high of keeping a spot after the season ends. But if he can put in a performance against a team who have allowed 16 sacks on their Quarterback in just 9 games then there may well be one final hope.
The Bucs Offensive Line may be just as inconsistent as the Eagles and with a lot of rotation predicted for the Eagles linebackers due to the amount of depth available despite injury setbacks, Smith needs to shine.
The only thing stopping Marcus Smith from taking on a greater role in this team, is Marcus Smith. A no-show against the Bucs could spell all she wrote in terms of his Philadelphia career but a good performance and a couple of tackles may give him the thinnest of lifelines to hold onto, it’s now or never.