How a top free agent offensive lineman could help the Eagles land a safety

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There’s the outside possibility that the Eagles could net a big acquisition at the safety position in the coming weeks. And it all could happen due to another team’s decision.

The Cleveland Browns have two key players slated to hit free agency next month — safety T.J. Ward and center Alex Mack. While Ward emerged as a Pro Bowler this past year, Mack has been that and more for several seasons. One is a playmaker on defense, the other an anchor on offense.

Teams have until next Monday (March 3) to designate the franchise tag to one player, and only one player. The clock is ticking on Cleveland to make a decision.

While Ward would be a tough loss, it should be kept in consideration that the Browns’ defense was actually pretty good last season. They ranked ninth in the league in yards given up per game, so you could argue that they have a solid foundation already in place.

The offense struggled though, and Cleveland appears to be in the market for another quarterback. Would this newly-minted toy influence their decision to franchise Mack, in order to offer top-notch protection for their signal-caller?

It’s tough to say, but one thing that Mack has going for him is his resume. He’s proven to be a high-caliber center, while Ward’s 2013 season was considered to be more of a breakout campaign.

With the recent news that Buffalo Bill’s safety Jairus Byrd likely isn’t going anywhere for free, Ward is now the next best thing at safety on the market. Eagles fans should keep an eye on the situation in Cleveland, considering the decision that franchise needs to make.

Alex Mack tops the charts as the No. 2 overall free agent offensive lineman for this offseason. Be sure to head over to cover32’s main page to check out the rest of the list.

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