Eagles Pro-Bowl Participants reflect the best of Howie Roseman and FO

Darius Slay
LANDOVER, MD – JANUARY 02: Eagles cornerback Darius Slay (2) waits for the game to start during the Philadelphia Eagles versus Washington Football Team National Football League game at FedEx Field on January 2, 2022 in Landover, MD. (Photo by Randy Litzinger/Icon Sportswire)

There’s no such thing as a perfect offseason. There are mistakes that are made: some in free agency, some in the draft, but the main mark of a good GM, is being able to limit mistakes and still put forward a championship-level roster.

For several years after the Eagles 2017 Super Bowl run, Howie Roseman was public enemy #1 in Philadelphia due to poor drafting, poor free agent pickups, and historically bad contract extensions.

Since the debacle of the 2020 season though, Roseman has seemingly changed the approach of the Eagles front office. It’s brought in some really solid players and has set the team up for extended success down the road.

The players participating at this year’s Pro Bowl for the Eagles are just further proof of the success the Eagles front office has enjoyed over the last year. The Eagles only sent five players to the Pro Bowl this year, but the stepping stones are there for more to join them in the years to come.

DT Javon Hargrave

Javon Hargrave signed a three year contract with the Eagles last offseason. As a player entering his prime, it was a much-needed bonus to a team that was dealing with massive cap hits from players like Malik Jackson, Alshon Jeffrey, and Carson Wentz.

The former Pittsburgh Steeler came to Philadelphia in search of a scheme change. Hargrave was a nose tackle in Pittsburgh but the move to the 4-3 Philadelphia defense allowed Hargrave to rush the passer more.

He responded with thebest season of his career. Hargrave set career high’s in tackles, sacks, QB hits and tackles for losses. At one point early in the year, Hargrave had six sacks in his first five games.

Hargrave showed he can be an excellent complement to Fletcher Cox and even out-performed him on numerous cases throughout the season. He was rewarded with his first pro bowl appearance.

At only 28 years old, Hargrave represents the commitment Roseman makes along the defensive line. It’s the reason the Eagles have been so successful for over two decades. Hargrave has one year remaining on his deal, but another strong season can put him in an excellent situation for even more money as he continues the prime of his career.

DE Josh Sweat

Josh Sweat has been the anti-Derek Barnett. A high-motor player who rarely makes poor decisions post play. He has been extremely consistent through his first four years with the Eagles.

In 2021, Sweat earned a new three year extension worth close to $40 million. It was a pretty big price increase for one of the Eagles rising stars on the team.

Sweat responded with his best season to date. 7.5 sacks, a PFF grade of 76, and among the top of the league in QB pressures.

Sweat has gotten better every single season he gotten into the league. As he continues to get more snaps as the premier edge rusher on the team, his numbers will only go up. Sweat represents Howie Roseman’s commitment to not only the defensive line, but also a commitment to it’s younger stars.

From 2017-2019, the Eagles were one of the oldest teams in football. Since 2020 however, they’ve made a concerted effort to not only get younger, but to extend some of their younger studs. Sweat joined Dallas Goedert and Avonte Maddox with contract extensions. All three were drafted in the same year, and all three have shown how good the Eagles front office can be in a draft.

K Jake Elliott

Another first time Pro-Bowler for the Eagles!

Elliott will always be a hero in Philadelphia for his heroics during the 2017 season. Since that season however, Elliott has been extremely inconsistent.

That changed in 2021. Elliott had a career year this past season, hitting on 90% of field goals, not missing an extra point, and giving the Eagles one of the few confidences on the special teams group.

Alot of people were stunned that Elliott was signed to a massive extension in 2019 – a top five contract given to a kicker. After 2020, fans were furious at the missed investment.

Elliott responded with his best season, and if his numbers continue to stay as high as they were this season, he’ll represent Howie Roseman’s continued success with sticking with his younger players.

CB Darius Slay

It feels good to have a lockdown corner again, doesn’t it Eagle fans?

Slay came via a trade in 2020 with the hopes he’d FINALLY give the Eagles much needed stability at a position they have failed to solve for over a decade. Slay has been everything the Eagles could hope for and more.

Slay was among the elite corners this year, giving up one of the lowest passer ratings when targeted, leading the team in interceptions and was in the conversation for the All-Pro team this year.

Slay is still relatively young (only 31) and hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down. The Eagles have him under contract for two more years. It’s a matchup made in heaven for Slay while this defense continues to get better.

Slay has been one of the best, on a long list, of trades Roseman has made since he has become GM of the Eagles. It represents the understanding Roseman has of some of the weaker points to the team. Roseman’s biggest strength as a GM is getting good value in trades, and cap manipulation. He has worked wonders to get a number one corner here, and Slay has rewarded him for being one of the best lockdown corners this franchise has ever had.

Center Jason Kelce

Kelce opted out of playing in the Pro Bowl this year, but after the season he had, who can blame him?

One of the main leaders of the Eagles franchise for years now, Kelce put in one of the best seasons of his career. Named a first team All-Pro for a fourth time of his career, Kelce helped paved the way for one of the best in-season turnarounds in team history.

There have been 11 centers in football history that have been named first team All-Pros four times throughout their career. 10 of the 11 are in the Hall of Fame. Kelce being the 11th, is well on his way to getting his gold jacket in Canton.

Kelce is one of the greatest draft steals in NFL history, and Eagles history. While there has been discussions on if he will retire or not, Kelce has won the hearts over the city of Philadelphia and represents the best of not only Howie Roseman’s decisions, but as the Philadelphia Eagles as a whole.

The ones deserving of a shot

The Eagles sent five players to the Pro Bowl, but there were many other players deserving of enjoying the festivities as well.

Lane Johnson, Dallas Goedert, Jordan Mailata and others definitely deserved their moment in the sun after excellent seasons. The Eagles roster has gotten younger over the last year. It’s something that seems to be the focus for Howie Roseman and the Eagles front office.

And as long as the wins keep coming, the Eagles best players will reflect very highly on a front office continuously looking to prove themselves.

 Photo by Randy Litzinger/Icon Sportswire

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