Top 10 Most Important Eagles Heading into 2023


Jul 10, 2023

The Philadelphia Eagles are coming off a Super Bowl loss but are the front-runners to win the NFC again. Here are the ten most important Eagles to make that happen.

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1. Jalen Hurts  

If it weren’t for a minor injury in December, we’d be talking about Jalen Hurts as the reigning NFL MVP. The season Hurts is coming off speaks for itself, with an absolutely incredible Super Bowl performance under his belt where he looked like the best player on the field. The budding superstar outdueled Patrick Mahomes as he threw for 300+ yards and combined for four total touchdowns. Fresh off a five-year, $255 million contract extension, Hurts has the keys to the Eagles franchise in his hands and will continue to be one of the NFL’s elite quarterbacks for years to come.

2. Lane Johnson

Since Johnson is a less glamorous right tackle, he’s not typically discussed at the length he should be, but Johnson is one of the best football players in the NFL. He hasn’t allowed a single sack since November 2020 and is an absolute warrior, playing through a torn adductor throughout the recent playoff run. When Johnson is on the field, the Eagles are that much of a better team. Johnson likely will find himself in Canton in the future.

3. Haason Reddick

A native of the Philadelphia area and former Temple standout, Reddick’s first season back home couldn’t have gone better. Finishing fourth in the defensive player of the year running, Reddick logged 16 sacks in the regular season and put together a dominant postseason showing where he notched another 3.5 sacks. The new anchor of the Eagles’ pass rush, Reddick looks poised for another dominant season.

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4. Jason Kelce

One of the most beloved Eagles in franchise history, Kelce yet again opted against retirement as he is coming off his fifth first-team All-Pro selection over the last six seasons. The future hall-of-famer is the lifeblood of the Eagles roster and an invaluable voice in the locker room that seemingly is getting better with age.

5. Darius Slay

Darius Slay was released from the Eagles this offseason, but he and the organization were able to figure out a contract resolution to keep him donning midnight green. The five-time Pro Bowl cornerback is the leader of the Eagles’ secondary, repping a “C” on his chest, and will need to continue to be a dominant force in his upcoming age-32 season.

6. AJ Brown

AJ Brown’s first season in Philadelphia was the best of his brief NFL career. Squashing critics’ assertion that he always is injured, Brown tallied nearly 1,500 yards and 11 touchdowns over 17 games, cementing himself as one of the league’s best receivers and Jalen Hurts top target.

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7. Jordan Mailata

Mailata is responsible for protecting the blindside of the Eagles’ quarter-of-a-billion-dollar investment and will continue to need to be a dominant player to keep his quarterback safe. While Mailata didn’t elevate to the Pro Bowl level many hoped he would in 2022, he was still one of the league’s better left tackles who has only played football for five years.

8. Nakobe Dean

While the Eagles have one of the most complete all-around rosters in football, their most significant question mark is, without a doubt, their linebacker group. After TJ Edwards and Kyzir White both walked in free agency, 2022 third-round pick Nakobe Dean has lofty expectations on his shoulders to anchor the group. Many believed Dean would be a sure-fire first-round pick if not for his small frame, so he will now have every opportunity to squash that notion on one of football’s best defenses.

9. DeVonta Smith

Considered by many to be the Eagles wide receiver “1B” alongside AJ Brown, the former Heisman trophy winner finished ninth in receiving yards this past season and looks poised to create one of the league’s most dynamic offenses once again.

10. Fletcher Cox

Fletcher Cox is no longer the perennial Pro Bowl player he once was, but he’s still an excellent defensive tackle in the league, but he lands himself on this list for his leadership. The Eagles have already drafted Cox’s successors on the defensive line in Jordan Davis and Jalen Carter, and with Davis having a down rookie season and Carter coming in with off-the-field concerns, Cox’s mentorship in the locker room will be felt for years to come.

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Thumbnail photo via Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

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