After missing the first three weeks of the season due to ACL surgery, veteran safety Rodney McLeod will make his 2021 debut this Sunday against the Chiefs.
With the injury to K’Von Wallace last week, McLeod’s return couldn’t have come at a better time. McLeod will presumably start opposite of Anthony Harris in Jonathan Gannon’s defense.
The Eagles pass defense has held up relatively well in McLeod’s absence, allowing the fifth-lowest passing yardage of any defense in the NFL. McLeod should only aid them in that department. The veteran safety is also one of the clear leaders of the team, and this defense could sorely use some leadership after losing Brandon Graham for the season.
Graham’s absence was felt on Monday night. Not only his play, but the team clearly needed a vocal leader to try and galvanize them during their putrid outing against Dallas. While McLeod may not be as vocal as Graham — no one really is — he’s a respected veteran in that secondary and someone who can certainly rally his troops in tough situations.
In 13 starts last season, McLeod was one of the best pass coverage safeties in the NFL. He surrendered a pedestrian 48.3 completion percentage and a 56.2 passer rating when targeted. With his addition to an already solid Eagles secondary, the team will be better equipped to slow down Kansas City’s explosive attack on Sunday.
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