By Art Beitchman  

In recent years the Eagles’ below-average defense has kept the Birds from much success.

With the hire of experienced defensive coordinator and former Lions’ head coach Jim Schwartz (above), the Birds have a seasoned coach they’ve lacked since Jim Johnson patrolled the sidelines many moons ago.

Some key free agent signings should shore up some leaky spots in the secondary, but FA linebacker who played last season with the Lions, Nigel Bradham, got off on the wrong foot to say the least, when he was arrested two days before the opening of training camp.

Bradham was involved in a scuffle in Miami and was charged with aggravated assault, which is a second degree felony. With the stricter NFL policy on player conduct, it’s possible Bradham could face a four game suspension by the league before any court proceedings ruling against Bradham, one way or the other, this knucklehead move could leave the Eagles down a LB the first month of the season.

Last April’s NFL draft might have gotten them a diamond in the rough with Jalen Mills, a safety/CB from LSU. Mills showed up at training camp with his hair dyed green on a dare from his buddies back home. Mills has impressed early on, but was taking heat from his teammates with being called “Green Goblin”, “Lime Green Skittle”, “The Joker”, and “Starburst”, “I’ve been getting an earfull from the guys” he said smiling.

Mills is another player with some off field problems. Rated as a second-round pick, he fell to the Eagles in the seventh round because he was arrested for domestic assault in 2014. The charges were dropped after he completed a diversion program.

Over the weekend the Eagles hired all-time great Brian Dawkins as a scout, but with B-Dawk on the field at practice he appeared to want much more do with the organization that drafted him into the NFL in 1996.