The Philadelphia Eagles are a passing team but in football, you have to make teams honest. To do that they need to shore up the running game. They have been looking at bigger backs to create another thunder and lightning tandem in the backfield.
Last season Miles Sanders showed what he could do. He had 179 rushes for 818 yards. He was also a threat in the passing game. He had 50 receptions for 509 yards. It was one of the greatest all-purpose yardage seasons by a rookie in NFL history.
Sanders is one of seven rookies in NFL history to rush for 800 yards and have 500 receptions in a season. He and Saquon Barkley are the only players that are not in the Hall of Fame on that list.
The future is bright for Miles Sanders. He looks like the next coming of LeSean McCoy and Brian Westbrook. If the trend continues he could be one of the greats.
The Eagles need a complement to him though. A complement in the form of a bigger back. Sanders is not a between the tackles kind of runner. The Eagles need a bruiser to go along with Sanders’ shiftiness
Last season Jordan Howard was a good spell for Sanders. The problem was the fact he couldn’t stay on the field. He had 119 rushes for 525 yards.
One of the reasons the team needs a big back is for goal-line stands. Howard was great in that situation last year. He had six touchdowns. The Eagles were fourth in the NFL in terms of redzone touchdowns.
The Eagles have always done well when they have made sure they got a big back on their team. During the 2017 season, the Eagles went out and got LeGarrette Blount and that resulted in a Super Bowl win.
In 2008 when the Eagles made it back to the NFC Championship game they had the 6’0 223 pound Correll Buckhalter. You can even go back to the 2005 Super Bowl team. The Eagles went out and got Dorsey Levens that season.
This year they are interested in a couple of names. Some names that came up were LeSean McCoy, Carlos Hyde, Devonta Freeman, Jonathan Williams, Lamar Miller and Bilal Powell.
The return of LeSean McCoy would be special for all Eagles fans but he isn’t a bigger back. Carlos Hyde isn’t an option anymore as he signed with the Seattle Seahawks. Devonta Freeman may cost too much as he is just 28 and a former Pro Bowler. Lamar Miller is almost 30 and coming off an ACL Tear and Bilal Powell is too small.
The right fit appears to be Jonathan Williams. Williams has the size, the power, he hasn’t been injured and he won’t be expensive. As a fifth-round pick in 2016, he hasn’t had much production in the league yet.
That’s okay for the Eagles because they don’t need him to be an every-down back. They need him to move the chains on short-yardage situations and move the pile in short-yardage goal-line situations.
This team knows the formula for success. That’s why they are trying to get explosive receivers and big backs. If they can recreate what Torrey Smith and LeGarrette Blount gave them in 2017 watch out for the Eagles.