The Philadelphia Eagles were not going to keep all of the free agents on their excellent roster. Of course, the organization expected key players to go this summer. Still, the Eagles tried their best to keep the free agents on their radar. They eventually elected to bring back key veterans while allowing some younger guys to go to other clubs. Here we’ll look at the absolute sneakiest signing of the Eagles during the first wave of 2023 NFL free agency.
Truth be told, we can consider the Eagles’ offseason as successful because they managed to keep Darius Slay and James Bradberry together. This was despite the losses of Javon Hargrave, CJ Gardner-Johnson, TJ Edwards, and others. Without a doubt, there is still so much work to be done in Philadelphia. However, the Eagles have a 2022 draft class that basically redshirted last season owing to the team’s depth at several spots. If those guys can step up big time, the Eagles should once again be a force in the NFC.
Of course, the Eagles made a wise decision by bringing back Bradberry. He willingly took a pay cut to ensure he and Slay would remain as the team’s starting cornerbacks for the next few years. Considering the Eagles’ depth at the position, it was crucial to retain Bradberry after his impressive performance last year. With Bradberry and Slay locking down opposing quarterbacks and receivers, the Eagles have two exceptional No. 1 CBs. That’s something most other teams can only dream of. It’s a key ingredient for a successful defense in the upcoming 2023 season.
And since we’re already talking about Slay, there were initial doubts about his future with the Eagles. That was due to a contract dispute. However, both sides eventually agreed on a three-year extension. Despite the reduced cap number, though, there are concerns about Slay’s performance as he enters his mid-30s. Still, he is a highly skilled cornerback and a valuable leader in the locker room. These make him an important asset for the Eagles moving forward.
Don’t forget, too, that they brought back Jason Kelce. Right now, Kelce is still the most effective center in the NFL. He also shows no signs of slowing down despite being 35 years old. When he’s on the field and in the locker room, the Eagles are a better team. Also, when Isaac Seumalo left in free agency, it was clear the Eagles needed Kelce back.
As we said earlier, though, the Eagles’ 2023 free agency also included a sneaky signing that could really turn out to be a massive positive for the squad this coming season.
Despite losing TJ Edwards and Kyzir White, the Eagles focused on bolstering their secondary. This approach led them to sign Nicholas Morrow. We consider him the best outside linebacker available in the second wave of free agency. With Nakobe Dean as the Eagles’ only starter in the position, Morrow is expected to pair up with him as a starter for the upcoming 2023 season. Although Morrow excels in coverage more than against the run, he has been consistently improving in his last three years. He has also proven to be durable, having played all 1,086 defensive snaps for the Chicago Bears last season.
Nicholas Morrow was a backup offensive lineman in high school and played in the school’s marching band.
Going from division III Greenville University to the NFL is astonishing.
The guy has an incredible story. pic.twitter.com/y9VUFVOqgj
— DIE-HARD Fans (@Eaglesfans9) March 21, 2023
Keep in mind that Morrow signed a one-year veteran salary benefit deal worth $1.155 million, with no guaranteed money. He also spent four seasons with the Raiders, where he played in 62 games with 29 starts. That was before moving to the Bears for the 2022 season. Morrow started all 17 games for the Bears last season. He also had a team-high of 116 total tackles, including 11 tackles for loss. Strangely enough, despite Morrow’s impressive performance, teams overlooked him in the first week of free agency. This allowed the Eagles to add a promising player to their linebacker room, which lost two starters in the offseason.
With the addition of Morrow, the Eagles’ linebacker room now consists of young talents like Dean, Christian Elliss, and Davion Taylor. They provide Eagles defensive coordinator Sean Desai with excellent competition and various options. While it is not yet clear where Morrow will play under the new coordinator, the Eagles are likely to continue seeking even more depth for the team’s defense.
Morrow also has a great story to tell. If he makes a big impact as we expect him to, everyone in Philly will know about the “off the beaten path” he took to reach the NFL.
He was an offensive lineman in high school – and a backup until 12th grade – and wasn’t on the radar of any major institution. He wasn’t on anyone’s radar, so he ended up playing collegiately at Division III Greenville College in Illinois, where he switched to the defensive side of the ball and the linebacker position.
Then his brilliance began to take control. Morrow pushed the weights, focused on his speed, and attacked the game’s technique until he was a senior at Greenville and NFL scouts were all over him. Morrow personifies how the NFL is just able to find talents even from the most unconventional places.
The post Eagles’ sneakiest 2023 NFL free agency signing appeared first on ClutchPoints.