The Philadelphia Eagles “addressed” their need at cornerback over the past several days by re-signing Orlando Scandrick and adding two experienced corners to their practice squad. But who cares about that, Howie Roseman? The fans want you to trade for Jalen Ramsey!
Fortunately, NFL insider Chris Mortesen offered up some information on the Eagles’ pursuit of the Jacksonville Jaguars’ star cornerback in a recent interview with Bobby Carpenter on ESPN Radio. (Hat tip to r/Eagles on the find.)
CARPENTER: Another guy that we’re waiting to see what the future holds for him on or off the field, Jalen Ramsey. Traveled with the team this weekend but was not suited up, did not play in this game. We know the back tightness, the illness, the birth of a child this last week. How do we expect this to play out now going into the next week after all that?
MORTENSEN: It’s going to be very interesting to me because he was on the sidelines as you saw yesterday. He had never missed a pro, college, or high school [game]. So that he missed yesterday, that means he’s really, really hurting. Also didn’t get a chance to have practice and missed a couple days of treatment on that back. He was in treatment once he re-joined the team on Friday.
But it also, Shad Khan, the owner of the Jaguars, he does not want to trade him. For a couple good reasons. One is he’s willing to pay him. He’s a heck of a player. And you don’t want to set this precedent of players forcing themselves out.
Now, realistically, winning a game, the owner allowing to see that we can win a game with that guy not playing, maybe gives him a little more comfort level if Jalen Ramsey’s going to hold his position [and says] ‘I’m not playing until my back’s gonna get well or I’m traded.’
Anxious to see what happens. We know that the Philadelphia Eagles and other teams are still highly, highly interested. I think a team like the Eagles, going into last week, were willing to trade a one and a two, but the Jaguars are saying ‘No.’ Will their minds change today? Well that’s why we work.
CARPENTER Do you think the Eagles are by the front-runner or are there several other teams that you think could nab Jalen Ramsey, one of them being Kansas City?
MORTENSEN: It’s easy to call the Eagles the front-runner because they’re a little bit desperate with their injuries in the secondary and they know they have a Super Bowl caliber team. They have an offensive line that is just dynamite and just kind of take the pressure off [Carson] Wentz and the whole group. Plus, their defensive front doesn’t have great pass rushers but they are strong so this gets stronger on the back end, they’re willing to do it.
But there are other teams. The Baltimore Ravens are another team. They already have one of the best corners in Marlon Humphrey. Put Jalen Ramsey back there.
The Kansas City Chiefs are an obvious one.
One not so obvious one, and I haven’t been knocked down on it, just to kind of monitor, are the Chargers. Because Gus Bradley was in Jacksonville when they drafted Ramsey, he fits what he wants to do. And that defense, yeah, Derwin James is missing, but either way, they still want — Philip Rivers, you know, we’ve got to try and win a Super Bowl. Oh, and by the way, we have to face that guy [Patrick Mahomes] in Kansas City twice a year, minimum.
TL;DR version - Jaguars ownership wants to keep Ramsey. So much so that they turned down a first-round pick and a second-round pick from the Eagles. Mort thinks the Eagles are a logical favorite for Ramsey but they’re hardly the only dog in the race.
So, where does that leave things? Well, the Eagles could try to up the ante and offer two first-round picks for Ramsey. I don’t think Roseman wants to go that high, though, especially given how valuable those contracts could potentially be as the team builds around Wentz’s mega-deal. There’s also a CBS Sports report out there that the Jags actually turned down first-round picks for Ramsey so that offer might not even be enough to get Jacksonville to move him.
Mort’s point about the Jags winning a game without Ramsey is interesting. Perhaps that makes ownership more willing to move him if they feel like they’ll be OK without him. On the flip side, ownership could be less willing to trade Ramsey if they feel like they have a team that’s ready to win now. The AFC South is currently wide open since all four teams are 2-2.
The Eagles are in a tough spot from a negotiating standpoint because they don’t have a lot of leverage. Everyone knows they have a struggling secondary that’s only been exacerbated by injuries to the likes of Ronald Darby, Avonte Maddox, and Sidney Jones. The only healthy corners on Philly’s roster right now are Rasul Douglas, practice squad call up Craig James, and an over-the-hill Scandrick. Far from ideal!
The Eagles could really use Ramsey right now and the Jags know that. Therefore, the price tag is going to be very high, assuming the Jags are even willing to move him at all.
We’ll continue to monitor how this situation develops. Deadlines typically spur action and the NFL trade deadline is about four weeks away: 4:00 PM Eastern on October 29. We’ll see if Roseman can find a way to get a deal done.
Should the Eagles trade two first-round picks for Jalen Ramsey?
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