The Jacksonville Jaguars officially signed two former Philadelphia Eagles linebackers on Wednesday: Najee Goode and D.J. Alexander.
Goode last played for the Eagles in 2017. After winning a Super Bowl with Philly, he signed a one-year deal with the Colts in 2018. Now he’s staying in the AFC South by going to Jacksonville.
Alexander is the bigger name of interest here for the Eagles, though, because of his potential impact on Philadelphia’s compensatory pick formula. If Alexander signed a qualifying contract with the Jags, who don’t need to worry about comp picks because they’ve already signed more players than they’ve lost, that would be great news for the Eagles. It’d mean that Philly can receive that 2020 fourth-round compensatory they’re projected to receive for losing Jordan Hicks. That Hicks pick is currently being cancelled out by the Eagles’ signing of either Andrew Sendejo or L.J. Fort.
It’s entirely possible Alexander didn’t receive a qualifying deal. He’s signing a contract nearly two months after free agency began and he’s always been more of a special teams contributor than a guy who regularly plays on defense.
And even if Alexander DID sign a qualifying deal, there’s no guarantee he even makes the Jaguars’ roster (and lasts on it for at least ten weeks). In addition to signing Alexander and Goode, Jacksonville also inked Ramik Wilson and claimed James Onwualu off waivers on Wednesday. Wilson and Onwualu are both linebackers.
Hopefully we’ll get some clarity on Alexander’s contract details in the near future.
Another angle to this news is that the Jaguars could be filling out linebacker depth in anticipation of trading Telvin Smith. Smith is skipping Jacksonville’s offseason workouts — to the public ire of Tom Coughlin — and his future with the team seems to be in question.
Dave Caldwell on if he expects LB Telvin Smith to be a part of the team in 2019: “We’ll see. I don’t want to get into hypotheticals.” #Jaguars— Phillip Heilman (@phillip_heilman) April 27, 2019
Smith has base salaries of $9.75 million, $10 million, and $10.25 million over the next three years. That very well might be more than the Eagles are comfortable paying to a linebacker in addition to Nigel Bradham. Then again, the Eagles could afford to upgrade that position and they have about $26 million in cap space to work with right now.
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