The Philadelphia Eagles signed cornerback Mac McCain III from the Denver Broncos’ practice squad on Tuesday afternoon, according to an official announcement from the team. Philly had an open roster spot to work with after clearing some space late last week.
McCain attended North Carolina A&T (Division I FCS) before signing with the Broncos as an undrafted rookie free agent following the 2021 NFL Draft. One Denver writer said McCain had a “very impressive camp” and the Broncos really wanted him back on their practice squad after waiving him.
The Eagles had a need for more depth with just Darius Slay, Steve Nelson, Avonte Maddox, and Zech McPhearson as the only four cornerbacks on the 53-man roster. The Birds also recently added Andre Chachere, who has cornerback experience, but he’s being listed as a backup nickel and third string strong safety on the team-issued depth chart. McCain profiles more as an outside option.
It might take some time for Chachere and McCain to get adjusted to Jonathan Gannon’s defense before they’re truly ready to see the field. The Eagles will hope they don’t have to play them anyway since it would mean injuries to the starters. In the meantime, the team will hope the new guys can get up to speed and provide depth as needed. As younger players, Chachere (25) and McCain (23) theoretically possess some upside so maybe they can compete for playing time in the future.
McCain will wear the No. 37 jersey with the Eagles. Given that they signed him from another team’s practice squad, his roster spot is guaranteed for at least three weeks.
Scouting report via NFL.com:
Productive outside cornerback with a penchant for making plays on the football. McCain is smart and plays with solid instincts. He lacks the smooth hips and chase speed to hang with NFL vertical targets, which is a major concern. While he’s instinctive, his losses to double moves might cause some hesitancy at times. He will struggle to maintain top position against size, but his length does help him out somewhat. His best shot could be on a practice squad of a zone-heavy cover unit.
Spider graph via Mockdraftable:
In related news, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reports the Eagles were planning to sign recently waived cornerback Jimmy Moreland after Week 1. The Houston Texans foiled Philly’s plans, however, by claiming him off waivers. Moreland was a seventh-round pick by the Washington Football Team in 2019 and it was a bit of a surprise to see them cut him. The Eagles’ interest in Moreland is moot for now but could still be worth noting if he shakes free again down the road.