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Wednesday, March 14, 2012
Eagles keep tinkering

By Dan Graziano

Determined either to have the most boring first few days of free agency ever or to clear cap room for a big surprise move or two down the road, the Philadelphia Eagles continued to make small, internal moves Wednesday.

They traded offensive tackle Winston Justice and a sixth-round draft pick (the 17th pick in that round) to the Indianapolis Colts for the Colts' sixth-round draft pick (the second pick in that round). And they also announced that restricted free-agent defensive tackle Antonio Dixon has signed his one-year contract tender and will return to the team next year.

The Dixon signing is important. They view him as a key piece to their defensive line rotation and a player who has yet to reach his full potential. He'll play for about $1.9 million in 2012.

The Justice trade feels like a salary dump and it is. Justice's cap cost was $4.2 million this year, and the Eagles surely believe they can find a backup tackle somewhere who will cost them less. With Jason Peters and Todd Herremans set at the starting tackle positions, Justice was expendable, and they move up 15 spots in the sixth round while dumping his salary.

As for which linebackers they're looking at, your guess remains as good as mine. I still think they should get London Fletcher, and maybe all of this tinkering is setting up for a move like that. But the Eagles so far are quiet, which is the way they like it.