There’s been plenty of fan talk over the years about the Eagles moving to a 3-4 formation. The team seems to always draft players who would fit better in the 3-4 format rather than the 4-3 that the Eagles use. This year has been no different and there is plenty of buzz going around about the 3-4 yet again.
In the 2010 draft, the Eagles surprised a lot of people by trading up to the 13th overall selection to select defensive end Brandon Graham. They continued to surprise people by drafting a ton of other LB/DE types in the later rounds.
With the way the Eagles drafted, the typical 3-4 conversation began to come up. Out of their defensive ends, the Eagles seem to have two categories. There are a group of smaller guys who are high-motor pass rushers and another group of bigger guys who look like they could be DE/LB hybrid players.
Sean McDermott has acknowledged the fact that they will use some of these hybird players and show some 3-4 formations in 2010. So now that we know we will see it, the question will be how much?
You have to believe that they won’t overuse the formation. The Broderick Bunkley and Mike Patterson combination in the middle is too good to not utilize as much as possible. Also, they don’t have that super big body guy that’s essential for the 3-4.
However, I am excited to see what they can do in the formation. They have all different types of players that could fit in there and be effective. They’ve got a bunch of speed they could line up and send multiple pass rushers at a time, or they could use this speed formation to try and do a better job covering the tight end.
I think they will work on this a lot in Training Camp, so it’s going to be even harder for the rookies to pick up the defensive system. If the younger guys want to make the roster, they are going to have to grasp the concepts of both the 4-3 and 3-4.
If the Eagles can find success in the 3-4 in certain situations, it will definitely be a big help.