The Eagles defense had some obvious struggles last year. One of the problems that stuck out most existed with the linebackers. Sean McDermott was forced into making up a bunch of different lineups and the team had to try to bring in players not on the team already to fix the problem.
So when did this problem start? Flight Night 2009. This is the night that Stewart Bradley sustained his season ending injury on a freak play while tackling Reggie Brown. The 2009 season was set to be Bradley’s “breakout” season, but when he went down that night we knew that we were in trouble.
Not only did the Eagles lose a very talented linebacker that night, they lost the guy who was going to take on a big leadership role in the absence of Brian Dawkins. It was a terrible night for the team, and the 2009 season shows just how much he means to the defense.
We received good news this week when we heard that Bradley was cleared by the doctors to start practicing with the team again. Also, we heard that Bradley took his rehab very seriously and that having Cornelius Ingram experience the same thing he was going through was very beneficial for the both of them. They were able to push each other in their returns to the field.
In 2010, Bradley will be back in the center of the defense and will take over the play calling. Having a healthy Bradley in 2010 will have a HUGE impact on this defense. It looks like he will be joined by Ernie Sims and either Moise Fokou or Akeem Jordan which definitely looks like any lineup they put together last year.
I am extremely excited for Bradley’s return and think it’s definitely a big step in the right direction for the Eagles defense.
What are your thoughts on Stewart Bradley’s return?