Eagles could be set for biggest roster overhaul of Chip Kelly era


Chip Kelly cleaned house prior to the start of the 2015 season and in doing so caused a lot of controversy both on and off the field. But the stability is still the last word that comes to mind when thinking about the future for the Eagles.

The one word to describe last off-season would be explosion. Within a matter of months we saw the heart of the Offense replaced whilst the Secondary was subject to a complete rebuild. But as we approach the end of the 2015 season, it’s clear that the team still need to improve in some vital areas..some of which should have been improved with the moves made already.

Without getting into the nitty and gritty, let’s take a look at the areas in which we are most likely to see some changes:

Like it or not, Sam Bradford’s future is still up in the air. His recent performances have been indicative of improvement but the start of the season was wobbly. There’s no guarantee he will be back, there’s no guarantee he will go.  Has he proved enough this season to earn a long term deal? How much will it cost the team? Does it make sense to turn to free agency or even the draft?

Running back:
DeMarco Murray’s massive contract is a dark cloud looming over the Linc as we begin to think about the future. It doesn’t make sense to cut Murray due to how much it will cost the team but not many teams will be willing to buy out such a big deal for such an underperforming player. The Eagles backfield has been sub-par all season and whether it’s signing a new back or getting rid of a current one, Kelly has to approach this minefield level headed to avoid another disaster.

Wide Receivers:
Miles Austin’s one year tenure lasted just over half of the season. After releasing two of the best Eagles receivers in the last decade, Kelly didn’t really fill the void. Drops hurt the team from start to finish and a spike of improvement from Matthews may have been enough to salvage his own season..but you can’t ignore the disappointing seasons from the others on the roster. Expect some big moves here this Off-Season.

Offensive Line:
This…doesn’t really need an explanation. Similar to the wideouts, Chip seemed to go out with the old…but then have a mental block and forget the in with the new part, leaving a group of backups to somehow battle through a season. This could lead to more roster moves down the line.

This is interesting. With Vinny Curry (technically a DE but plays LB too) in his last year, Alonso underperforming, Ryans heading towards the end of his career and Marcus Smith being…Marcus Smith, the Linebackers could well become the Secondary of last off-season. The new core (if there was to be one) would likely be built around Jordan Hicks, Connor Barwin and Mychal Kendricks..where does Alonso factor into this? Let’s not go down that road just yet..

Of all the moves made to improve the unit this year, the acquisition of Thurmond perhaps stands out as the lone good point. Drafting Eric Rowe has proven to be successful but has largely been overshadowed by the disappointment of Byron Maxwell. Whilst Nolan Carroll played exceptionally well all season until his ankle injury and we’re still yet to see JaCorey Shepherd take a snap, we could see a surprise or two come the Off-Season.

So after a brief analysis of the glaring points of need, let’s look at the Eagles players who are set to become unrestricted free agents at the end of this season.

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This is just a list of players who are out of contract by the end of this year..there are 26 players whose contract runs out in 2017…26…that’s close to half of a 53 man roster. Now this isn’t taking into account inevitable extensions but it’s also not taking into account the Eagles cutting them due to the dead money being close to minimal as they will head into the final years of their contract.

It’s probably slightly too early to start speculating about what kind of roster moves are going to be made in the coming months but if this and the last two years are anything to go by..the Chip Kelly revolution is just beginning.