In a surprise move, the lowly Philadelphia Eagles cut defensive end Jason Babin, who led the team in sacks. For a team who struggles – well, everywhere on the field – you would think that they would want every player available to use on both sides of the ball. While there may be more to this move than Andy Reid letting the younger players get more time while allowing Babin the opportunity to play for a contender, Babin will either be claimed off of waivers or clear and be able to sign with a new team for the NFL Playoffs.
Here is a look at 5 NFL teams who should consider signing Babin as they make a push for the postseason.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – The Bucs are making a strong push for the playoffs, although their late loss at home against the Atlanta Falcons did not help. Still, Tampa Bay has been one of the more pleasant surprises this season, and is a legitimate postseason contender. But they rank just 28th in the NFL with only 18 sacks. Babin could step in immediately and help out on the defensive line, at least against the pass, where the Bucs are the weakest.
4. Washington Redskins – In the “anything can happen” NFC East, the Redskins crawled back into the NFC playoff picture by taking out the Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving. If they can ever do the same against the New York Giants this week, they are officially back in contention. Having lost so many players on defense already this season, Babin would be a decent replacement for Washington, who has recorded just 20 sacks this season, having been forced to play most of it without Adam Carriker
3. Baltimore Ravens – One of those cases where the rich seem to get richer. The Ravens are great about picking up other teams’ castoffs who can step right in and help the team, especially on defense. Babin is not the same player he was last season in Philadelphia, but if you put him on a team with so many great leaders including Ray Lewis, Terrell Suggs and Haloti Ngata, there is no telling how much he can contribute right away as the Ravens are getting healthier and hitting their stride once again.
2. New England Patriots – The Pats have struggled to replace Andre Carter from a season ago, and rank in the middle of the pack in the NFL in sacks. They have now lost Jermaine Cunningham to a four game suspension, and Chandler Jones is battling an injury in a stellar rookie season. With New England often playing with a lead, opponents are often back in the pocket passing. Add a player such as Babin and make him force the opposing quarterback to get rid of the ball a bit sooner than he would like, and then wait and see what happens.
1. Atlanta Falcons – The NFC best Dirty Birds have been looking for a compliment to John Abraham for quite some time now. They thought they had it when they signed Ray Edwards. It did not work, and they cut him a couple of weeks ago, freeing up a space on the front line. Atlanta looked into signing Babin before the Eagles locked him up, meaning they were interested not too long ago. That would lead you to believe that they will show some interest this time around as well.