PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — It just feels a little bit different.
Heading into the 2017 season, there’s some extra excitement surrounding the Eagles — who have added established offensive weapons like Alshon Jeffery, LeGarrette Blount, and Torrey Smith — for second-year quarterback Carson Wentz.READ MORE: 1 Teen Killed, 2 Others Injured In North Philadelphia Triple Shooting
Third-year linebacker and defensive leader Jordan Hicks agrees. There’s a buzz in the air.READ MORE: Former Delaware Governor 'Pete' du Pont IV Dies; Ran For President In 1988
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“I think there’s a little bit more excitement,” Hicks admitted on Friday’s 94WIP Morning Show. “Out there on the field, it’s second year in the scheme, I think there’s just a lot of building of what we’ve done already and who we are already. We’ve built a little identity in trying to increase that identity and move forward, but I think the buzz and the excitement is just a little bit different than it has been in the past couple of years.”
Hicks, 24, was the Eagles’ third-round pick in 2015. Last season, Hicks recorded five interceptions and one fumble recovery in his first full campaign.
He believes first-round pick Derek Barnett will help the defense right away.
“I’ll tell you what, his motor is off the chains,” Hick said of Barnett. “He is a fast, get off the ball, strong, physical, really rangey type of d-end. Guy who reminds me a lot of a guy like BG [Brandon Graham]. Short stocky and can get off the ball really.”MORE NEWS: 12-Year-Old Girl Killed, 4 Other Children Injured After Minivan Overturns On I-95 North In Tinicum Township
The NFC East is one of the toughest divisions in football, but the expectations for the Eagles in 2017 are sky high.