Brian Dawkins is long gone. The man who vocally took over for Dawkins as Philly’s defensive leader — safety Quintin Mikell — is in St. Louis.
The Eagles are searching for defensive leadership, and a leader hasn’t presented himself yet. Marcus Hayes of the Philadelphia Inquirer suggests newcomer Cullen Jenkins, who is unsure of his place.
“It’s kind of hard because you don’t want to overstep your boundaries,” Jenkins said. “When do you speak up? How do you do it? . . In time, you start feeling more comfortable to do things.”
Jenkins and Jason Babin have lived up to their billing as free agent pickups thus far. But the loss of Trent Cole will hurt the defensive line, the linebackers are mediocre at best, and the secondary is trying to figure out how they fit into Juan Castillo’s scheme.
It’s not a surprise that all these new players are struggling in a brand new system.
“Not just knowing what you’re doing, but knowing what you’re doing so well that when you start getting tired, and things start moving a lot faster, you don’t second-guess yourself,” Jenkins said. “You can just react.”
The Eagles defense doesn’t have a lot of time. They have a tough test Sunday in Buffalo. A four game losing streak awaits if they don’t step up soon.