Monday, February 8, 2016

Eagles get Babin

The Eagles have agreed to terms with free agent defensive end Jason Babin, NFL sources confirmed.

Eagles get Babin

Jason Babin returns to Philadelphia, where he played for the Eagles during the 2009-10 season. (Associated Press)
Jason Babin returns to Philadelphia, where he played for the Eagles during the 2009-10 season. (Associated Press)

The Eagles have agreed to terms with free agent defensive end Jason Babin, NFL sources confirmed.

Jay Glazer of first reported the story. The Eagles can't officially announce the move until Friday at 6 p.m.

A year and a half after not re-signing Babin the Eagles bring back the 31-year-old. The five-year deal is worth $28 million with roughly $5-6 million guaranteed, according to Jim Wyatt of The Tennessean.

The move reunites Babin with defensive line coach Jim Washburn. Under Washburn's guidance in Tennessee Babin recorded 12-1/2 sacks last season. Babin spent just one season with the Eagles in 2009 when he notched just 2-1/2 sacks in part-time duty.

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"Back to Philadelphia, Back with Washburn," Babin tweeted.

He's been a journeyman most of his career despite being the Houston Texans' first-round pick in 2004. Prior to last season, his top sacks total was five for the Texans in 2006.

But with the Titans Babin had a Pro Bowl season. Washburn utilized Babin's straight speed by splitting the end out wide in the nine-technique. The coach is expected to bring that front line scheme to the Eagles. Babin is also considered a clubhouse leader and the Eagles could use a few of those on defense with safety Quintin Mikell off to the Rams and linebacker Stewart Bradley likely not back.

Most important, the 6-foot-3, 260-pound Babin will be expected to improve a defensive line that struggled down the stretch last season and one that isn't expected to have 2010 top pick Brandon Graham for most of the season. Graham tore his ACL last December and also needed microfracture surgery.

Babin will also help overused end Trent Cole. Cole has recorded double-digit sack totals in three of his last four seasons. Last season he finished with ten, but notched only three in the second half of the season.

Getting Babin means the Eagles passed on Ray Edwards, considered the best available end still on the market. The 25-year-old is expected to command a large pay day.

The Eagles also seemingly lost out on another Washburn project when the Redskins traded defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth to the New England Patriots for a 2013 fifth-round draft pick. The Eagles may not have been interested in the 30-year-old former All-Pro, however.

Staff Writer
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Birds' Eye View is the Inquirer's blog covering all things Philadelphia Eagles and the NFL.

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