Philadelphia Eagles: Timmy Jernigan Trade Fills Another Hole

Nov 6, 2016; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan (99) reacts after a third down stop in the first quarter against the Pittsburgh Steelers at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Eagles newly acquired defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan fills another hole on their roster.

For the Philadelphia Eagles, this offseason was a great opportunity to get better. And that is what they have done. With three more weeks until the 2017 NFL Draft, Philadelphia has already improved their roster. Also, their team will hopefully improve even more once they draft their newest players.

They started by signing former Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Torrey Smith. Smith gives second-year quarterback Carson Wentz a legitimate deep threat. Howie Roseman and company followed that up by signing former Chicago Bears wide receiver Alshon Jeffery, giving Wentz a true No. 1 target.

The Eagles also signed offensive linemen Chance Warmack and Stefen Wisniewski to bolster their offensive line. However, it wasn’t just an offseason of additions. There was one significant loss for the Eagles, and that was defensive tackle, Bennie Logan.

Logan, regarded as one of the best run defending defensive tackles, paired well next to Fletcher Cox. He may have been a limited pass-rusher, but Logan was a player the Eagles and their fans could count on to stop the run. He departed to Washington, and it left a big hole at defensive tackle.

It took some time, but the Eagles filled the gap before the draft. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported on Tuesday that the team had traded their third-round pick (74th overall) to the Ravens in exchange for the Ravens third-round pick (99th overall) and fourth-year defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan.

Just 24 years old, Jernigan projects to take the spot that Logan created when he left town. In his four years with Baltimore, Jernigan has only started 26 games, but has recorded 13 sacks. Logan only recorded 5.5 career sacks in 51 starts. So, Jernigan will add some juice to the Eagles pass rush, which was lacking in 2016.

The big worry is that the Eagles have to face running backs like Ezekiel Elliott without Logan. However, as Pro Football Focus pointed out, “Jernigan had the best run-stop percentage among 3-4 DEs in 2016.”

Philadelphia fans loved Logan, but this is an immediate upgrade to their defensive line. Jernigan is a much more complete player than Logan and Roseman said it best (via PhiladelphiaEagles.com),  “At 24 years old, his best football is still ahead of him.”

Jernigan is connected with the Eagles vice president of player personnel, Joe Douglas. Douglas was a scout for the Ravens when they selected Jernigan with the 48th overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. He has a good sense of knowledge of his skill set and apparently felt that he would be a great addition to this football team.

Philadelphia only had to move down 25 spots in the third round, which isn’t a hefty price considering what Jernigan will bring to the table. He is in the last year of his contract, though, the Eagles surely hope he plays well and they can retain him after 2017.

Usually, you can fill some of your holes in the NFL Draft, but if you can fill those holes before, you need to jump on it. That is what the Eagles did by trading for Jernigan, and this was a solid move for an improving team.

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