The Philadelphia Eagles are aiming to sign three of their young talents to contract extensions this offseason, according to a report from NJ.com's Eliot Shorr-Parks.
"According to a person familiar with the situation who requested anonymity, the Eagles have prioritized getting new contracts done with offensive tackle Lane Johnson, tight end Zach Ertz and defensive end Vinny Curry."
It's already been reported that the Eagles have started contract talks with Curry, who is set to be an unrestricted free agent in March. As for Johnson and Ertz, this offseason marks the first time the Eagles will be able to negotiate a long-term contract with them. They're both set to be free agents following the 2016 season, though the Eagles could use the fifth-year team option on Johnson.
It's no surprise that the Eagles have interest in locking up their young talent. Curry, Johnson, and Ertz figure to be key home grown players on Philadelphia's rosters for years to come.
Curry has proved to be a very effective pass rusher in limited snaps. He might be able to find even more success if the Eagles move back to a 4-3 front under new defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz, as expected.
Johnson has been the team's starting right tackle since being drafted No. 4 overall in the 2013 NFL Draft. The 25-year-old also filled in at left tackle at times when Jason Peters got hurt during the 2015 season. Johnson is widely considered to be the team's future left tackle once Peters is no longer around.
Ertz got off to a bit of a slow start after dealing with an injury in 2015, but he was excellent down the stretch. In his final four games, he had 35 receptions for 450 yards (12.9 average) and one touchdown. The Eagles will hope he can continue to build on that progress.
The Eagles would be wise to lock up these talents now at reasonable rates before the players have a chance to hit the open market.
One player notably absent from this list is Fletcher Cox. Note that Cox isn't set to be a free agent until after the 2016 season. It's already been reported that the Eagles have had preliminary discussions with Cox. One would think it's only a matter of time before the Eagles also try to extend his deal as well.