When looking at X-Factors on the Eagles defense, Josh Sweat is the first name that comes to mind. This defensive front has the potential to be really scary. Sweat is the one player that can take it over the top. Fletcher Cox, Javon Hargrave, and Malik Jackson is a great trio at the interior. Brandon Graham and Derek Barnett are a solid group on the outside. What happens if Josh Sweat breaks out in 2020?
Can Josh Sweat become a feared pass rusher for Philadelphia? It’s one of the story lines Eagle fans should be paying attention to as the season inches closer. Sweat was a player I was super high on coming out of the draft. There was zero reason he should have fell in the 4th round. The Eagles were smart enough to scoop him up.
The former Florida State edge rusher had all the tools. He just needed to get a tad bigger and stronger. He did this past year and turned into a solid contributor. Sweat played in all 16 games and saw action in 355 defensive snaps which was roughly 34 percent. Mostly rotating in at the edge.
Despite being the 4th guy in the rotation behind Vinny Curry, Sweat was the most efficient rusher on the team. In 2019, Sweat had 4 sacks, 21 tackles, 7 TFLs and 10 QB hits. He averaged one sack for every 88 snaps. Nobody else had a better rate on this team out of the edge rushers.
Sweat looks like a real monster now. He’s up 15 pounds from his rookie year and looks just as athletic as before. Heading into year 3, I think there’s a real chance Sweat turns into a game wrecker. I think Za’Darius Smith is a good comp who took some time to get in a swing. Smith recorded 10 sacks his first 3 years in the league. Then you woke up one day and Smith is killing people. I think that trajectory is very realistic for Josh Sweat.