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January 20, 2015

Eagles showing early interest in defensive backs at Senior Bowl

Birds working to improve 31st-ranked pass defense

Eagles NFL

MOBILE, Ala. -- In 2013, the Eagles had the 32nd ranked pass defense. In 2014, they were ranked 31st and gave up the third most pass plays of 20+ yards in NFL history. The failure of the defensive secondary was an enormous contributing factor to the end of their season.

If who they are conducting their interviews with on the first day of the Senior Bowl is any indication, the Eagles are trying to fix their personnel issues on the back end of their defense. Three defensive backs competing at the Senior Bowl told that they have meetings with Chip Kelly tonight. They are listed below:

Eric Rowe, CB/S, Utah (6'1, 204)

Rowe noted that he is meeting both with Chip Kelly and "the defensive coordinator," which of course is Billy Davis. We profiled Rowe as a player who could interest the Eagles on Monday. Here's what we said then:

Rowe started at CB for Utah this season after playing his first three seasons at safety. If the Eagles see Rowe as a CB at the next level, he has the long frame at 6’1, 201 and physical nature against the run that they have prioritized. If they view him as a safety in the NFL, he has versatility to cover receivers, which enables them to stay in their base defense against three WR sets.

Kurtis Drummond, S, Michigan State (6'1, 205)

Again, Drummond was a player we profiled on Monday:

Drummond was part of Michigan State's "No fly zone" defense. He is a cover safety with good size and ball-hawking skills. If the Eagles are looking for safeties who can handle slot receivers a la Malcolm Jenkins, a player like Drummond should be on their radar.

Check out this one-handed INT in 2013:

Quinten Rollins, CB, Miami Ohio (5'11, 193)

Rollins is an interesting prospect. He has ball skills (seven interceptions his senior season) and very impressive athleticism. He was a star player on Miami's basketball team. From his bio on Miami's website:

"Finished his career ranked second at Miami and 12th among MAC career leaders in steals (214) … one of only 15 players in MAC history to reach 200 career steals … ranked fourth at Miami in career assists (391), seventh in games started (106) and ninth in minutes played (3,448) … played in 116 career games … only player in Miami history to twice record seven steals in a game … owns four of the top six single-game steal marks at MU."

Follow Jimmy on Twitter: @JimmyKempski