"Starting to hear talks [between] Eagles and both Trent Cole + Brandon Graham aren't progressing very well."
Mosher's report follows news that emerged on Tuesday afternoon that Cole is unwilling to take a pay cut.
If true, this is obviously a concern for Philadelphia. Cole has been a key starter on the Eagles defense 2006 while Graham has been a very valuable pass rusher off the bench. It's been expected that the Eagles might have to part ways with one, but losing both would be unideal.
The issue with Cole is that he's due a large salary cap figure in 2015 at over $11.6 million. It's hard to justify that figure at this point in his career. Plus, Philadelphia can save nearly $8 million by cutting the 32-year-old veteran. Releasing Cole would create a need for a new starting outside linebacker, however.
Graham, who turns 27 in April, could potentially fill that roster hole. But the Eagles seem hesitant to fork over big money to their former first round pick. Graham is reportedly seeking $30 million over four years. If the Eagles aren't willing to pay him what he wants, the pass rusher can just wait until free agency starts on March 10 to see what he can get on the open market.
If Cole gets cut and Graham walks, all the Eagles would have left at outside linebacker is Pro Bowl starter Connor Barwin, 2014 first round pick Marcus Smith, and Travis Long. Smith only played a total of 105 snaps in his rookie season so he's still a total question mark. The team was high on Long heading into 2014 before he suffered a season-ending ACL injury in late August. Neither Smith nor Long are close to being proven options as a starter.
The Eagles will need to be aggressive in free agency if they can't work things out with Cole and/or Graham. Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Jason Worilds could be a name to watch based on reports from last year. Stay tuned.
UPDATE - Sounds like Trent Cole will be gone.
Did more digging. Told by two league sources that Trent Cole's days with the #Eagles are going to end. Team will eventually release him.— Geoff Mosher (@GeoffMosherCSN) March 3, 2015