3 Eagles Fighting For Their Jobs After Free Agency

These Eagles need to prove themselves to keep their roles on the team.

Nolan Smith, Philadelphia Eagles
Nolan Smith, Philadelphia Eagles / Kim Klement Neitzel-USA TODAY Sports
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1. Nolan Smith, Jr., EDGE

A first-round pick in 2023 Nolan Smith, Jr. was one of many former Georgia Bulldogs the Eagles added to their defense. Selected 30th overall, Smith never put it all together in Athens, finishing with 12.5 sacks in four seasons, with a career-high of 4.5 coming in 2021.

Despite the low numbers, he was seen as a player who could develop into a major weapon off the edge. Knowing he was a project, the Eagles brought him along slowly — but it might have been slower than expected. As a rookie, he finished with just 18 tackles and one sack in 17 games.

Smith doesn't have a great shot of producing more this season following the moves Philadelphia made in the offseason. Not only did they keep both Josh Sweat and Haason Reddick, but they re-signed Brandon Graham and picked up Bryce Huff in free agency.

Huff signed a three-year, $51.1 million deal following a breakout campaign with the New York Jets. The fourth-year pro had 29 tackles and 10 sacks and gave the Eagles four players who can get to the quarterback.

This leaves Smith on the outside looking in.

The good news for him is that he's not in danger of being released any time soon. Being a Round 1 pick will afford him plenty of time. However, another season with minimal production could be detrimental to his chances in the future.

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