Seven Eagles who deserve Pro Bowl recognition in 2021

Eagles
PHILADELPHIA, PA – OCTOBER 18: Philadelphia Eagles Offensive Tackle Jordan Mailata (68) looks on in the second half during the game between the Baltimore Ravens and Philadelphia Eagles on October 18, 2020 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire)

We’re 12 weeks into the 2021 season and the Philadelphia Eagles have experienced it all. The team and its coaching staff are extremely young and were always going to endure teething problems early on. With that said, it doesn’t mean that they’ve been starved of elite play. It may not seem like it at face value, but there’s a handful of Eagles who should easily be in Pro Bowl conversations with voting now underway.

Darius Slay

Slay has three Pro Bowl appearances to his name and is absolutely pushing for a fourth this year. After a statistically quiet season in 2020, the former Detroit Lion has showed that so long as you remain consistent, the results will follow.

His hard work went unappreciated last year but that’s no longer the case. His 3 interceptions are the most he’s logged since 2018, the most of his career aside from that ridiculous 8 INT season in 2017.

The defense has been a mess for the most part this year, but Slay has been one of the lone pillars to lean on. A hat-trick of defensive touchdowns in the span of 5 games quickly turned heads back to play that has done nothing but improve as the year has gone on.

As sticky in man coverage as he ever has been, Slay has been invaluable to this defense and is going to be among the leading candidates to be given All-Pro recognition.

Avonte Maddox

This has easily been the best season in the career of the young cornerback, largely because the Eagles are actually playing him in the role he thrives in as opposed to throwing him around the secondary. The agile Pitt product has made consistent plays in the defensive backfield all year long and has been a menace when it comes to blocking opposing tight ends and contributing in the run game.

PFF currently has Maddox ranked as their eighth best corner in the entire league, which certainly speaks volumes about the level of production we’re seeing. He’s allowed one touchdown on 53 targets this year, batting down 7 of those and picking off another.

Tackling had previously been a weak point for Maddox, who often struggled to take the right angles. That’s not a problem this season, as his missed tackle percentage has plummeted to just 6.5%. It’s dropped every year, going from 10.3% as a rookie, all the way to where it is now.

There’s no doubting that Maddox is deserving of All-Pro recognition.

Jordan Mailata

The new franchise left tackle has picked up where he left off last year. Mailata is proving that he’s more than just a huge body. He brings plenty of heart to the table and his selfless nature on the field is as lovable as his sheer dominance.

Whether he’s clotheslining opponents or being the first teammate to run over to a fallen ball carrier and pick them up, Mailata is always in the picture. With a PFF grade of 84.3, Mailata has only allowed 2 sacks all season long and graded as the NFL’s second best tackle in week 12.

The gentle Giant should absolutely be in the conversation for a Pro Bowl nod. While he may not get it at the first time of asking, we should see the Aussie earn the honors sooner rather than later.

Jason Kelce

When is Jason Kelce not in the Pro Bowl conversation? It’s kind of scary that we’ve just accepted his generationally elite play as normal. A four-time Pro Bowler, Kelce is looking for his third nomination in a row as well as his third All-Pro selection.

This may well be his last season, but he’s playing like a 24-year-old center with as much juice as ever. He’s allowed one sack all year and has been ridiculously agile in the run-game.

There be no clearer indication of his value to this team than when he was pulled out of the Giants game with an injury and the offense seemingly collapsed in on itself until he returned.

Kelce should be a sure-fire selection here.

Lane Johnson

He did miss three games earlier in the year as he battled mental health issues, but since returning, Johnson has been back to his very best. The 31-year-old was left out of the conversation last year and despite having three All-Pro selections to his name, it’s about time he gets back to where he belongs – in conversations that discuss the elite at his position.

While he’s surrendered five penalties, he’s yet to allow a single sack. Pave the lane to another Pro Bowl and cast your vote!

Shaun Bradley

An Eagles linebacker?! In the Pro Bowl?! Yes…

After receiving a heap of praise from Head Coach Nick Sirianni, fans started to pay closer attention to the Temple product. Bradley actually sits third in the NFL when it comes to special teams tackles (10).

This isn’t rare for an Eagles player. Alex Singleton shined on special teams not too long ago and Trey Burton originally carved his future out by shining on the once prestigious unit. However, it still deserves praise.

Bradley has come up with some big-time plays this year and if he can keep up the pace, there’s every chance he earns recognition for his stellar play.

Jake Elliott

It wasn’t too long ago that Jake Elliott was subject to a world of criticism. It wasn’t really his fault. The Eagles paid him quite a big bag and a step back would’ve meant he was underachieving by the new pay-grade. However, he’s bounced back in a huge way this year.

Elliott is yet to miss a PAT and has knocked through 18/20 field goals. The only two he’s missed are from the 40-49 range and he’s a perfect 3/3 from 50-yards plus!

It’s definitely nice to see Elliott return to the kind of production that the Eagles paid him for. Is it enough for All-Pro recognition? There’s only one way to find out…

Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire

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