Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Jamar Chaney To MLB And Casey Matthews To WLB For The Birds


It isn’t a shock to me but it may be to others. The Eagles have moved Jamar Chaney back to middle linebacker and moved rookie Casey Matthews to the Will linebacker.

I guess defensive coordinator Juan Castillo has shown that he’s not willing to stay with something that isn’t working. The Birds have admitted making a mistake by making this change.

I can tell you right away that I think it was a good move. Chaney is a natural middle linebacker, while Matthews may be able to play the middle linebacker position later in his career but he’s not ready for it right now. Putting Chaney at Sam and Matthews at Mike was effective making both positions weaker.

You saw Chaney get torched at the Sam spot last week as Pro Bowl and future Hall of Fame tight end Tony Gonzalez took him to the cleaners. While this was happening Michael Turner was running by and over middle linebacker Casey Matthews. I think making this move makes them a better defense immediately.

I can understand the Eagles coaching staff sticking with their decision for a while, but the truth is too obvious to hide. Matthews was getting swallowed up by the offensive linemen because of his lack of size and strength as well as lack of experience.

The rookie from Oregon was hesitating and that has been costing him quite a bit. The “Wide Nine” defensive alignment of the Eagles defensive front puts a lot of pressure on the linebackers in the run defense. They have to cover more area and more gaps than in the regular 4-3 alignment.

It was too much to ask of a youngster who has had much practice time because of the NFL lockout.

As things stand now, Chaney will be the middle linebacker, Matthews will play the weakside linebacker spot and Moise Fokou will be the team’s Sam linebacker.

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