Tyrann Mathieu is the perfect fit for the Eagles’ defense
Eagles GM Howie Roseman has always been particular about where he allocates money in free agency. Howie has never paid too much attention to positions like linebacker but is known to throw money around the defensive line and secondary.
One of the top players available when free agency kicks off in a few weeks is Kansas City Chiefs safety Tyrann Mathieu. The Honey Badger is in the prime of his career at 29-years-old and would be the perfect spark that this defense needs.
The 2021 season wasn’t great for Mathieu. According to PFF, he ranked 32nd out of 65 starting safeties with a defensive grade of 67. Almost all of his stats ranked near the bottom of the NFL but honestly, it’s tough to lay blame solely on the Honey Badger.
Tyrann Mathieu in 2021:
|65 (28th)||3 (11th)||367 (17th-most)||9 (8th)|
Kansas City’s secondary was an atrocity in 2021, allowing over 4,200 yards passing and 1,999 yards rushing this past season. In total, they allowed over 6,200 yards this past season, the 6th most in the NFL and most of any playoff team.
It’s impossible for one player, especially a safety, to take full blame for a defense that was miserable the entire season.
Philadelphia doesn’t need much coverage-wise from a safety, so the Honey Badger will surely thrive with fewer responsibilities over the top. Darius Slay and Avonte Maddox are far better than any duo that he has worked with during his time with the Chiefs.
Like former Eagle Malcolm Jenkins, Mathieu is a force in the running game and could be a fourth off-ball linebacker for this defense. In 2021 he totaled 65 tackles, more than either Eagles safety last season.
438 of Mathieu’s 996 snaps this past season had him lined up in the box, the most in his career. Howie hates linebackers, but he loves going after safeties who play close to the LOS.
Even though he’s great up-front, Mathieu is still a two-way safety, recording a 76.4 coverage grade from PFF.
Philly has the money to make it work, with Mathieu projected to be paid roughly $16 million a year and the Eagles having potentially over $40 million in space after restructures.
Roseman will be sure to evaluate all of their options on the market, but with Anthony Harris and Rodney McLeod both free agents, it could be a perfect fit.
Mandatory Credit: Kansas City Star