Jay Ajayi has a new agent heading into the final year of his contract with the Philadelphia Eagles. After previously being represented by Select Sports Group, Ajayi is now working with NFL super agent Drew Rosenhaus.
Ajayi is now the sixth Eagles player to be repped by Rosenhaus. The others include: Nigel Bradham, Tim Jernigan, Derek Barnett, Jalen Mills, and Matt Jones.
Three of those players have signed deals with Philadelphia in the past year. Jernigan signed a multi-year extension last fall (before having his deal re-worked this offseason), Bradham signed a new contract earlier this year, and Jones was inked to a two-year deal with no guaranteed money back in May.
In other words, Howie Roseman and the Eagles have been able to successfully negotiate with Rosenhaus recently. Ajayi’s new representation shouldn’t prevent him from re-signing with Philly.
There are a number of other factors, however, that could make the 2018 season Ajayi’s final year with the Eagles. It’s hard to see the Birds committing a lot of money to a running back when they’re already tight on cap space, for example.
Then there’s the concern about Ajayi’s surgically repaired knee. The injury history seemingly contributed to Ajayi slipping to the fifth round in the 2015 NFL Draft. Ajayi has also been listed on NFL injury reports with a knee issue with both the Dolphins and the Eagles.
All of this isn’t to suggest that Ajayi doesn’t have value to the Eagles in 2018. He does. This is a player who averaged a very strong 5.8 yards per carry on 70 rushing attempts in 2017. Philadelphia’s coaching staff has made it clear that Ajayi is the No. 1 back in their running back rotation.
Still, with Darren Sproles back healthy and Corey Clement coming off a promising rookie season, Ajayi is going to have to share running back touches to some extent.
Even if Ajayi doesn’t re-sign with the Eagles after this year, there’s no question that trading a 2018 fourth-round pick (which Philadelphia received from the Patriots through the 2016 Eric Rowe trade) to get him was worth it. He helped contribute to the Eagles winning a Super Bowl. Plus he projects to make a meaningful contribution this year.
And in the event that Ajayi doesn’t re-sign, which seems likely, the Eagles can still recoup some value in the form of a compensatory pick in the 2020 NFL Draft if he inks a deal with some other team in free agency.
As far as replacing Ajayi in 2019 goes, the Eagles have time to figure that out. Maybe the Eagles can count on Clement to take over. The Birds also have 11 picks in the 2019 NFL Draft to work with.
Should the Eagles re-sign Jay Ajayi?
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