All-Pro linebacker Shaq Leonard was cut by the Indianapolis Colts a few weeks ago and the wait to see his next team has been the talk of the NFL world. It seemed to come down to a few teams and we finally got a decision as Shaq Leonard will be signing with the Philadelphia Eagles.
— Jordan Schultz (@Schultz_Report) December 4, 2023
It seems like the decision for Shaq Leonard was between the Dallas Cowboys and the Philadelphia Eagles. The four-time All-Pro linebacker helps solidify even further the Eagles’ defense to the point where they are going to be able to contend with some of the best in the NFL.
Shaq Leonard was a second-round pick in the 2018 draft out of South Carolina State. In his career, he has recorded 614 total tackles, 15 sacks, 17 forced fumbles, six fumble recoveries, 12 interceptions (one returned for a touchdown) and 31 pass deflections. This is a huge addition to the Eagles coming off a 42-19 home loss to the San Francisco 49ers yesterday.
What does the addition of Shaq Leonard mean for the Philadelphia Eagles?
This is a two-pronged answer as this is someone the Eagles wanted while also taking him away from the Dallas Cowboys. The contract is a one-year deal and will be a huge addition to the defense that currently is the weakest link of a team that remains as the top seed in the NFC with a 10-2 record.
The Eagles needed to find ways to fix their defense as that has been dreadful as their 24.0 points per game given up places them 24th in the NFL. As a result, the Eagles have a +39 point differential despite having the best record in football.
Shaq Leonard is going to be elevated as the starting linebacker over Zach Cunningham as he is out with injury to pair with Haason Reddick and Nicholas Morrow in the Eagles 4-3 base defensive scheme. It’s very rare to see someone as talented as Shaq Leonard become available at this point of the season but it helped address a serious hole in the team and continues to stockpile incredible talent for a team looking to find its way back in the Super Bowl after losing to the Kansas City Chiefs a year ago.
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