Free agent cornerback A.J. Bouye is drawing interest from the Philadelphia Eagles, according to a report from Eliot Shorr-Parks of NJ.com. ESP reports “the two sides have spoken” since the NFL’s legal tampering free agency period began at noon on Tuesday, Mar. 7.
The 25-year-old Bouye is arguably the best cornerback on the free agent market, so he’s expected to command a big pay day. Bouye is coming off a strong season but there’s reason to be skeptical about spending big on him:
Bouye is expected to get a huge pay day in free agency. Buyer beware. Bouye entered the season with just eight career starts in three seasons, and began it as a backup, not starting for the Texans until Week 5. From there he locked down the starting job, and he was impressive in the playoffs. But despite not starting for a full season, he was 2nnd in the league in pass interference calls and was the 4th most penalized cornerback in 2016.
Bouye has only started 19 games for the Texans since being drafted in 2013. He doesn’t exactly have an extensive track record of success.
The feeling here is the Eagles aren’t serious contenders to sign Bouye. Philadelphia only has $8.7 million in cap space and I don’t think they’re going to look to spend a lot of money on a corner after being burned by that route in the past (see: Nnamdi Asomugha, Byron Maxwell).
The Eagles do need cornerbacks, though, so that would explain why they’ve reportedly been in contact with Bouye. I think it’s more realistic the Eagles sign a less expensive player (or two) in free agency and then look ahead to a 2017 NFL Draft class that’s supposedly loaded at cornerback.
UPDATE: Looks like the Eagles aren’t a serious suitor, as I expected.
Among the teams expected to be extremely competitive for A.J. Bouye: Texans, Titans, Jaguars, Colts, 49ers, Browns— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) March 7, 2017
Eagles have inquired about A.J. Bouye, but not expected to emerge as a serious player for his services at this time. Fluid situation— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) March 7, 2017