Coming off back-to-back 7-9 seasons with a still-unproven second-year head coach/quarterback tandem, the Philadelphia Eagles were hardly a trendy playoff pick entering 2017. And yet, they managed to prove the doubters wrong, posting a 13-3 record and winning the Super Bowl for the first time in franchise history. That they did so by winning three straight playoff games as an underdog — minus a starting middle linebacker, MVP-candidate quarterback and future Hall of Fame tackle, among other key injuries – speaks volumes to just how deep the Eagles are from top to bottom.
In fact, Philadelphia earned PFF’s top overall grade this season, combining the No. 2-graded defense with the fifth-best offensive grade by our analysts. Looking ahead to the 2018 season, Philadelphia will bank on that depth, along with a clean bill of health for the aforementioned players, in its quest to repeat as Super Bowl champions. After all, the team currently has minimal cap room and draft capital to work with.
Three additions we want to see for fantasy
Paul Richardson, WR: The Eagles could use a field-stretcher opposite Alshon Jeffery, and speedster Richardson certainly fits the bill after turning 80 targets into 703 yards and six scores. Torrey Smith caught just 36 passes while averaging 6.8 yards per target and a career-low 11.9 yards per catch. His $5 million salary for 2018 comes with a team option and no dead cap money.
More draft picks: The Eagles have the very last pick of the first round, and then won’t be on the clock again until Round 4 thanks to a series of trades. Fortunately for them, they have the luxury of having one of the better quarterback situations in the league. Assuming Carson Wentz stays on track to return from his knee injury ahead of Week 1, Philadelphia would be well served to find out how many early-round picks it can get for Super Bowl MVP (and one-time Pro Bowl MVP) Nick Foles.
Jay Ajayi to become the bell cow: With LeGarrette Blount headed for free agency, Ajayi is in line to become the lead back in Philadelphia, although Corey Clement and Darren Sproles figure to remain a key part of the weekly game plan. Ajayi has one more year left on his rookie deal and seemed to get more comfortable in Philly as the season went on. In seven games with the Dolphins, he averaged only 3.4 yards on 138 carries. Although his opportunities were virtually cut in half with the Eagles, Ajayi averaged 5.8 yards on 70 carries in seven regular-season games with Philadelphia, often seeing big openings in the run-pass option.