Former Eagles Defensive Lineman wants to play with the Eagles
Between Mandatory Mini-Camp and the start of Training Camp, there isn’t really much to talk about as players and coaches are off spending time with friends and family. However, an interesting story has developed about former Eagles defensive end Connor Barwin
In a recent interview with Heavy.com, former Eagles linebacker/defensive end Connor Barwin stated that he would like to return to the Eagles and has been in contact with Eagles GM Howie Roseman.
“I’m trying to come back and play for the Eagles,” Barwin told Heavy.com. “I’m training right now and I’ve talked to [Eagles GM] Howie [Roseman] and they’re going to see if they need any depth on the edge and so I’m going to wait until camp starts before I sign anywhere else, but obviously I’m not going to wait too long. But the Eagles know that’s where I want to be.”
Performance Between the 4-3 and 3-4 defense
Barwin last played with the Eagles in 2016, but was cut for cap space the following off-season. After being released, Barwin has spent the last two seasons with the Los Angles Rams and the New York Giants. Barwin is now a free agent, looking to join back up with the Eagles. Could Connor Barwin be successful in this Eagles 4-3 defense? Probably not. Throughout his career, Barwin had been very successful in a 3-4 defense as a outside linebacker. His best season came with the Eagles in 2014. His 14.5 sacks helped get him selected to his only Pro Bowl.
In 2016, his final season with the Eagles, Barwin was converted to a defensive end in new defensive coordinator, Jim Schwartz’s 4-3 defense. The result, a mere 5.0 sacks. Ever since his standout 2014 season, Barwin has been on the decline. According to Pro Football Focus, in 2018 Barwin ranked 101st out of 109 at pressure rate for edge rushers.
What could Barwin bring to the team?
The Eagles could use some more defensive end depth with the departure of Chris Long. Barwin would provide veteran leadership however he won’t be able to produce enough to where it would be worth it. He’s 32 and hasn’t had more than 5.0 sacks since 2015 (including 1.0 sack last year with the Giants).
The Eagles have a bunch of young players (Derek Barnett, Josh Sweat, and newly drafted Shareef Miller) that need the chance to show they can perform on the field. Signing Barwin would be a roadblock for these young talents. Barwin is simply not successful in a 4-3 defensive, so despite being a fan favorite, the Eagles should not bring him back. If for some reason the Eagles do decide to bring him back, it should raise some serious eyebrows for a front office who has performed very well in recent years.