Former Eagles cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (henceforth referenced to as DRC) has officially returned to the NFC East. This time around, instead of wearing Eagles green, he'll be donning the Giants' blue. The deal is worth up to $39 million over 5 years with $19 million guaranteed.
The Eagles originally acquired DRC back in 2011 when they traded Kevin Kolb to the Arizona Cardinals. Back then Eagles fans were excited to have a trio of corners that featured Asante Samuel, Nnamdi Asomugha, and DRC in the slot. The problem was that theses names looked better on paper than they did in reality. Samuel freelanced too often, Asomugha was too slow and couldn't cover for his life, and DRC just wasn't meant to be a slot CB. The Eagles traded away Samuel that following offseason and DRC took over as a starter on the outside in 2012. The results, at first, were good. Then the Eagles' season fell apart and DRC's level of play dipped accordingly. DRC became a free agent after the season and the Eagles made no attempt to re-sign him or franchise tag him; instead allowing him to sign a one-year deal with the Denver Broncos. DRC's performance curiously rebounded on a Broncos team that was one of the best in the NFL.
And herein lies the conflicting nature of DRC: his effort doesn't always match his talent. And there's no denying he has some real talent. He's one of the fastest cornerbacks in the NFL. As we saw in Eagles training camp, DRC is one of the few, if only, receivers who has a prayer of running step by step down field with DeSean Jackson. But DRC is hardly a player a team can count on to give it their all regardless of the situation. His performance with a struggling Eagles' unit in 2012 is perfect evidence. Tackling has never really been a strength for DRC, but it's an ever bigger problem when the effort isn't there. Look at this video of a Dez Bryant touchdown from 2012. And here's another effortless play against Miles Austin. Sickening.
DRC even admitted he didn't give it his best in Philly. Subsequently, DRC's love for the game has really been drawn into question. During Super Bowl XLVIII media week, DRC mentioned the possibility of early retirement despite being only 28 and coming off a great season where he would enter free agency as the top available cornerback on the market.
With all of that said, DRC is an interesting gamble for the Giants to take a chance on. If the team plays well, he might be worth the chance. But if things go south early like they did for the Giants in 2013, DRC can't be counted on to help turn things around.
So welcome back to the NFC East, DRC. Get ready for all of those screen passes Chip Kelly has planned to throw your way.