UPDATE: Well, this is strange. Schefter basically immediately reversing course.
In this case, JuJu Smith-Schuster’s agent called the Eagles to gauge their interest; those were the discussions. The Eagles did not wind up courting him. JuJu back to Pittsburgh, which was what he wanted. https://t.co/IWTvGIfzxs— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 19, 2021
ORIGINAL STORY BELOW.
The Philadelphia Eagles haven’t been very active in free agency, to no surprise, but apparently not for a total lack of effort.
The Eagles actually offered “more money” on a multi-year deal to free agent wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster, who returned to the Pittsburgh Steelers on a one-year, $8 million contract on Friday morning. This much was reported by NFL insider Adam Schefter.
JuJu Smith-Schuster also turned down more money on a multi-year deal from the Eagles than he took to return to the Steelers, per source. The Eagles’ were a secret suitor. But Smith-Schuster loved Pittsburgh and its fans too much to leave. https://t.co/X8gitZYxwd— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 19, 2021
Multiple things to unpack from this news:
- Maybe not the best sign of your franchise’s health that a free agent is turning down more money to play with a 39-year-old quarterback who looked cooked at the end of last season.
- The Eagles don’t have a lot of cap space but they’re not just sitting on their hands.
- Signing JuJu was a reasonable target for the Eagles from a profile standpoint. The 2017 second-round pick is only 24 years old. He also might be a little undervalued after his first two seasons went better than his last two. But maybe he’s just not as good as he was once thought to be and paying him would’ve been a mistake.
- No player ran more routes from the slot than JuJu last season. The Eagles appear to have interest in upgrading on Greg Ward, as they should.
- Perhaps the Eagles will try to sign another free agent wide receiver? We recently wrote about how they should be looking to take advantage of a soft market at that position.
- While the Eagles’ exact offer isn’t known, NFL Network’s Taylor Bisciotti reported the other ones:
Sources tell me these were the other offers— Taylor Bisciotti (@TaylorBisciotti) March 19, 2021
KC 8 mill with 3 mill incentives
Steelers 8 mill
Baltimore 9 mill 4 incentives