NFL free agency rumors are heating up as we’re only a few days out from the start of legal tampering on Monday, March 11. On Friday, NFL insider Mike Garafolo joined the 97.5 The Fanatic Midday Show with Anthony Gargano and Jason Myrtetus to talk about the latest buzz on the Philadelphia Eagles.
TEVIN COLEMAN IS ON THE EAGLES’ RADAR
GARGANO: The big ones, [Antonio] Brown and [Le’Veon] Bell, have you ruled them out for the Eagles?
GARAFOLO: I don’t know that I’ve ruled them out completely. I don’t think — Antonio Brown, that’s not happening. As far as Le’Veon Bell, um, I would not think that he is going to be an Eagle just because that’s going to be a lot of money. It’s going to be a ton of money. It just doesn’t make sense for them knowing that they’ve go so many other resources. Now, what are they going to do in the backfield? I think there are going to be some other options, whether, in free agency or perhaps via trade. There’s going to be a move made by the Eagles in the backfield. If I pull up my free agency chart —
GARGANO: I’ll tell you one thing. I hear, the [NFL] Combine broke, and I heard that Tevin Coleman is a guy they’re interested in.
GARAFOLO: Why can’t you just let me say it? I was going to pretend like I didn’t know that that was potentially the case and I was going to say it and be like ‘You know, don’t be surprised if Tevin Coleman was on the radar.’ [laughs] You’re right, dude. Tevin Coleman is 100% on the Eagles’ radar.
Garafolo went on to say that Coleman’s next contract is “probably going to be north of $7 million per year.”
If that’s the case, that seems like it could still be too much for the Eagles’ taste. But perhaps Coleman’s value will be closer to Spotrac’s projection of $5.3 million per year.
Putting money aside for a second, Coleman does make sense for Philly. The 25-year-old has proven himself as an efficient runner (4.4 career yards per rush attempt) and he also has receiving chops to boot. In four season with the Falcons, Coleman logged 92 receptions for 1010 yards (11.0 average) and 11 receiving touchdowns. Coleman could be enticed to join Philly as a 1A in their running back rotation.
Still, the feeling here is that Coleman’s market will outprice the Eagles’ interest. There’s been a lot of buzz that the Jets, who have a lot more cap space than Philly, could be targeting Coleman.
EAGLES LOOKING TO ADD SPEED
GARAFOLO: I’m not 100% sure on my info here but I believe they are going to make a significant move for a speed wide receiver. This is where I don’t want to play the game of matchup. Hey, John Brown with them. He’s the speed guy out there on the market. But I do believe that’s an element they’d love to be able to bring to this offense right now. And, in a sense, Mike Wallace was supposed to be that guy last year. Never really got the chance to see that happen. I don’t know … he claims he’s faster than when he came into the league when I [last] talked to him. Maybe they try and bring him back if they fall flat on some other options. I’m looking for them to add some speed to the offense. I believe that is something they’re interested in based on what I have heard [about them being] interested in adding to their offense.
It should be no surprise the Eagles have interest in adding a deep threat. It’s something they sorely lacked in 2018, especially with Wallace being hurt for most of the season.
It’s funny how Garafolo said he didn’t want to play the matchup game but then he threw John Brown’s name out there. That’s a speedster who would certainly make sense for the Eagles. Again, it’s just a matter of price. Other teams are also going to have interest in Brown’s burner ability.
I also think Garafolo’s note about Wallace potentially coming back makes sense if Philly does strike out on other deep threat receivers. Not the worst fallback plan.
CHRIS LONG BACK?
GARAFOLO: My understanding, [from] someone who has spoken to Long recently, said that he was talking like he is going to come back. So, listen, that’ll be a key piece for them if he comes back and there’s no kind of contract thing that blows that one up.
I could be wrong but my guess is that Eagles wouldn’t be so seemingly willing to move on from Michael Bennett if they knew Long also wasn’t going to be back. I think the Eagles are moving on from Bennett in part to ensure Long will be back with the team in 2019.
NICK FOLES TO THE JAGUARS
GARAFOLO: That’s my expectation, yeah. We’ll see what the numbers come in at because Jacksonville pretty much knows they’re going to be bidding against themselves. Listen, there’ll probably be a team or two that checks in [on Foles]. Just to say ‘Hey, come here for $10 million.’ Something like that. But right now, indications are — and have been all along — that it’s going to be Jacksonville for Foles.
Garafolo was first to report Foles and the Jags had “mutual interest” in each other about a month ago. It’s apparent that there’s no real market for Foles outside of the Jags, who have been clearing up cap space in order to make room for BDN.