PHILADEL­PHIA

USA TODAY Sports Weekly - - SPORTS -

Sto­ry­line of the week

Re­ly­ing on the ‘D’: It’s likely to be the de­fense that keeps the dream of a Su­per Bowl re­peat afloat. A vet­eran front of­fers ver­sa­til­ity and star power with DE Michael Ben­nett and DEs Chris Long and Bran­don Gra­ham. Then you have the po­ten­tial for pure dom­i­nance in spurts from DT Fletcher Cox and DE Derek Bar­nett. In LBs Nigel Brad­ham and Jor­dan Hicks, the Eagles have in­te­gral pieces. In the sec­ondary, they have depth, lead­er­ship and the po­ten­tial in S Mal­colm Jenk­ins and FS Rod­ney McLeod. CB Sid­ney Jones is set for a big­ger role, while Jalen Mills and Ron­ald Darby will man the cor­ners. Add tal­ented 5-9 CB Avonte Mad­dox, and they have the po­ten­tial for flash and ver­sa­til­ity in the slot.

Rookie watch

The Eagles traded up in the sec­ond round to take Dal­las Goed­ert. The big and ath­letic tight end has pro­vided a replica and com­ple­ment to Zach Ertz. Goed­ert, in three pre­sea­son games, has nine catches for 149 yards and a TD.

Glenn Erby, Eagles Wire

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