Jason Babin, who led the Eagles with 18 sacks last year, has been released. Babin had double digits each of the last two years, but at age 32 has dropped off. He was part of the “win now” mode moves before last season, and with the Eagles most certainly not winning now, he is the first veteran jettisoned. One has to wonder if there was something said, because there is little benefit to getting rid of him now versus the offseason.
Who might be interested in the veteran for defensive line depth or as a pass rusher?
He starred for Tennessee two years ago, and the Titans’ leading sacker in 2012 is Kamerion Wimbley, with 4.5 sacks. Tennessee is sitting with 4 wins, so they would have waiver priority, but may not want to make a claim based on salary. Other teams with losing records, like Cleveland or Arizona, might have to weigh whether it is worth it to bring him in for five weeks. What potential playoff teams might look to add him? Well, it would have to be a schematic fit. I don’t see a team utilizing primarily a 3-4 system bringing him in unless it’s for certain packages.
I could see the following teams discussing whether Babin could be part of a rotation:
1. Atlanta– they released Ray Edwards and have Kroy Biermann playing a prominent role. Outside of John Abraham, they have to scheme for pressure, relying on Johnathan Babineaux, better served inside, and Sean Weatherspoon. I could see them considering it. They make sense, but also have the worst waiver priority spot.
2. Cincinnati– they’ve got stud Geno Atkins at tackle and Michael Johnson at one defensive end spot. I could see them utilizing Babin in a rotation at the other spot on passing downs.
3. Tampa Bay– a team with plenty of cap room and now unexpectedly in the middle of the playoff chase in Schiano’s first year. No stud pass rushers means they can use an extra body to provide a pass rushing boost to protect their vulnerable secondary.
4. New Orleans– the Saints are now in desperation mode to win out, and could use an extra lineman to provide a spark. Schematically would fit with Spagnuolo’s defense.
[photo via US Presswire]