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13 players the Philadelphia Eagles can trade or cut to save salary cap space

Who stays? Who goes?

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

With less than a month until the start of 2017 NFL free agency, the Eagles currently rank fourth to last in salary cap space. Over The Cap shows the Eagles at $9.8 million while Spotrac estimates the number to be $11.6 million. That's the bad news.

The good news is the Eagles can (and will) make more moves to free up space. As Jimmy Kempski recently reported, Philadelphia is expected to free up "significant" cap room this offseason.

Here's a look at some potential moves that could be happening soon. Keep in mind the Eagles are free to cut any player at this point, but trades can't be made until the new league year begins in March. The reason why the Eagles haven't made more cuts by now could easily be due to the fact they're hoping work out some trades. Howie Roseman makes more deals than any other executive.


These players are virtually guaranteed to be done in Philadelphia. The Eagles will save $17.35 million with these four players gone.

Ryan Mathews

Cut or traded: $4 million saved ($1 million dead money)

Moving on from Mathews is a no-brainer for the Eagles. The veteran rusher turns 30 in October and he just can't stay healthy. It's unclear if/when he'll ever play again following a significant neck injury late in the season. Mathews has some talent, so maybe he would have some value in a trade, but his health status could prevent a deal from materializing.

Connor Barwin

Cut or traded: $7.75 million saved ($600,000 dead money)

There's no question Barwin is a great guy. He does tremendous work for the community off the field and he gives maximum effort on every snap. But he turns 31 in October and he's just not a great fit for the Eagles' 4-3 defense. Barwin wasn't much of a threat as a pass rusher last year and he looked a step slow in defending the run at times. Barwin is reportedly open to taking a pay cut, but the Eagles shouldn't be looking to bring him back even if that's the case. It's time for Philadelphia to move on. Ideally the Eagles will be able to trade him to a 3-4 team.

Mychal Kendricks

Cut or traded: $1.8 million saved ($4.8 million dead money)

The Eagles are reportedly expected to trade Kendricks this offseason. The 26-year-old linebacker clearly fell out of favor with the new coaching staff. Kendricks only played 26.8% of Philadelphia's defensive snaps in 2016. Kendricks is a talented player but he's also very inconsistent. On the whole, he hasn't played very well since signing a contract extension prior to the 2015 season. He's also not a great fit for Jim Schwartz's defense because blitzing is a strength of his and Schwartz doesn't rely on blitzing his linebackers very often. The Eagles won't get a huge haul for Kendricks but he should have some trade value.

Jason Kelce

Cut or traded: $3.8 million saved ($2.8 million dead money)

The Eagles are reportedly considering moving on from Kelce this offseason as well. Moving on from Kelce isn't an easy call because he's a valued leader in the locker room. But he's struggled the past two seasons and he's the 10th highest paid center in the league. The Eagles are high on Isaac Seumalo so the team feels like they have a replacement for him. The feeling here is the Eagles might be willing to keep Kelce around if he takes a significant pay cut. But there's no guarantee that will happen. A trade might be possible here but you have to wonder how much value he has around the league due to the fact he's undersized and not a prototypical center. The Eagles might just have to cut Kelce.


These players might be gone, but it's not necessarily a lock. Keep an eyes on these ones.

Allen Barbre

Cut or traded: $2.1 million saved ($150,000 dead money)

Barbre had a nice season for the Eagles in 2016. He performed well at left guard and filled in adequately at right tackle at times. Despite this, Kempski reports Barbre "isn't safe" to return. Barbre turns 33 this offseason so the Eagles could be looking to get younger up front. The Eagles could also be figuring Barbre will only be a backup for them moving forward and the cap room is more valuable than he is.

Ron Brooks

Cut or traded: $1.6 million saved ($500,000 dead money)

Brooks didn't make much of an impact for the Eagles after going down with a season-ending injury in October. Brooks was the team's slot corner in 2016 and he could easily be brought back in that role. The Eagles already cut Leodis McKelvin and Nolan Carroll is set to be a free agent, so getting rid of Brooks would open another hole at cornerback. But, as with Barbre, maybe the team would rather just have the cap space. It's not like Brooks is irreplaceable.

Nigel Bradham

Cut: $3 million saved ($1.75 million dead money)
Traded: $4 million saved ($750,000 dead money)

This is an interesting one. Bradham played well for the Eagles in 2016. He may have been the team's most underrated player on defense. But his multiple off field issues might prompt the team to move on, just like the Eagles did in the case of Josh Huff. I expect Bradham to be back in Philadelphia next season, but it's at least worth noting the team can easily move on from him if needed.

Chase Daniel

Cut: $1 million saved ($7 million dead money)
Traded: $6 million saved ($2 million dead money)

Cutting Daniel isn't worth it for the Eagles, but trading him absolutely is. "But who the hell is going to trade him?" you might ask. Well, one NFL insider said there were up to six teams interested in Daniel last offseason, which should explain why the Eagles had to pay so much to get him. I'm not saying a Daniel trade is likely by any means, but it's not an impossibility.


Jason Peters

Cut or traded: $9.7 million saved ($2 million dead money)

The Eagles reportedly asked Peters to take a pay cut. The 35-year-old can easily reject the team's request. He's the 11th highest paid offensive tackle in the NFL, which is more than reasonable. Peters means a lot to the locker room and the coaching staff loves him. I'd be shocked if he's not back in 2017. If anything, perhaps the Eagles work on a restructured deal with him.

Darren Sproles

Cut or traded: $4 million saved ($0 million dead money)

The Eagles aren't cutting Sproles. Would the team trade him to a contender? I doubt it, especially considering how the Eagles are thin at running back. Sproles said 2017 will be his last season in the NFL.

Nelson Agholor

Cut: $2.3 million lost ($4.9 million dead money)
Traded: $17,511 saved ($2.5 million dead money)

Unfortunately for the Eagles, they can't cut Agholor. Doing so would actually cost them 2.3 million in cap space. Trading him, however, would save the Eagles a very small amount of money. Who is trading for Agholor, though? Probably no one. He's been downright dreadful up to this point in his career. But just because the Eagles have to keep him doesn't mean they have to rely on him heavily next season. You can bet the team will seek upgrades at receiver.

Brent Celek

Cut: $1 million savings ($4 million dead money)
Traded: $3 million savings ($2 million dead money)

Celek is a big "culture" guy for the team so he's certainly not being cut. A trade would be ideal, but no one is going to be trading for a 32-year-old blocking tight end.

Vinny Curry

Cut: $6 million lost ($15 million dead money)
Traded: $1 million savings ($8 million dead money)

Cutting Curry is virtually impossible. Trading him is possible, but very unlikely. Curry should have an opportunity at more playing time in 2017 with Barwin gone. But will the coaching staff trust him to step up? Note that Curry only played 42.5% of Philadelphia's snaps last season despite receiving a large contract extension.


Take the amount from the obvious cuts and increase it a little to account for any surprise cuts/trades and you have at least $20 million in savings. That would put the Eagles at around $30 million in cap space. The Eagles won't be able to go on a crazy spending spree with that type of money, but they should be able to fill some roster holes.

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