May 20, 2016
Any free agents left on the open market this time of year come with significant flaws, or they'd be on an NFL roster. Still, there are useful players who can be found after the draft, although you're typically looking at them as guys who would have to compete for jobs on the 53-man roster.
The Philadelphia Eagles have some positions where they could use more depth, most notably at running back and linebacker. Here are some players who might still make some sense to bring in for a look.
A number of fans have suggested Chris Polk as a potential free agent signing, and it's one that makes some sense, seeing as he was an old Andy Reid acquisition in 2012. The Eagles need bodies at running back and Polk fits in a West Coast offense. While he is most often thought of as a tough, hard runner, his real appeal is as a pass-catcher out of the backfield. As long as he can stay healthy, which was always a concern, he would give the Eagles a competent backup who can run, catch, and pass protect at reasonably competent levels.
Bell hasn't been much as a runner in Detroit's offense's lately, averaging 3.9, 3.9, and 3.5 yards per carry over the last three season. However, over the last four seasons, he has amassed 161 receptions. Again, the ability to make plays in the passing game seems to be a focus of the running back position in Doug Pederson's offense.
Butler was becoming a really good player in the NFL when he received a seven-year contract extension worth $51.8 million after the 2013 season. Two years later, the Chargers cut him. Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune wrote a scathing piece about Butler, saying that he essentially quit on the team after he got paid.
Still, the Eagles have nothing in the way of depth at linebacker, and it might not cost a lot to get Butler into camp to see if he has interest in being a football player again.
Hill has been around a while, as he was a former fourt- round pick of the Lions in 2009, which was Jim Schwartz's first season as head coach there. He played behind a talented starting pair of DTs in Detroit for Schwartz for four years before signing a decent contract in Tennessee, where he's been for the last three seasons. The Eagles already signed some some depth at DT recently when they added Mike Martin, also formerly of the Titans.
With Fletcher Cox staying away from Eagles' OTAs and Beau Allen out with an injury, Taylor Hart was getting first team reps at DT. You can never have enough defensive linemen, and Schwartz has familiarity with Hill.