It’s no secret that the Philadelphia Eagles’ roster has a gaping hole at one of the two outside starting cornerback positions.
With Steven Nelson leaving to sign with the Houston Texans, the current starter across Darius Slay is ... Zech McPhearson, maybe? While the 2021 fourth-round pick showed promise last offseason, he’s hardly a sure bet.
The Eagles might want to add a more proven option. And they just so happen to be in luck with a new name on the market.
The New York Giants officially released James Bradberry on Monday. This after trying to trade him but failing to find a team that wanted to take on his hefty contract ($13.4 million base salary).
Bradberry isn’t getting cut because he’s a bad player. It’s more about New York valuing the $10.1 million in cap space they cleared by letting him go. It’s not like Bradberry figured to be a long-term piece for the Giants considering he turns 29 in August and would’ve been a free agent after the 2022 season.
It is true that Bradberry isn’t coming off his strongest year. He allowed a 93.0 passer rating when targeted — his highest mark in four seasons — and missed 21.7% of his tackle attempts. Not great.
Then again, it’s not like many players were excelling on a terrible Giants team last year. And Bradberry was a Pro Bowl cornerback as recently as 2020.
One would expect Bradberry to have a relatively competitive market now that he’s free to sign with any team. The Eagles hardly have the only roster that could afford more help at cornerback.
It’s for this reason that I don’t expect Philly to be the favorite to land Bradberry. The sense here is the Eagles, who rank 22nd in cap space with $10.2 million, aren’t going to break the bank to sign him. If he ends up being more affordable than expected then, sure, maybe it happens. But methinks the Eagles will ultimately be outbid.
Nick Sirianni and Howie Roseman alike have talked about how they’re intrigued by their youth at corner. They seem to be planning to throw a lot of young defensive backs at the wall with the hope that one of them will stick. It’s not the worst plan ever but it’s hardly guaranteed to work.
I’m not expecting Bradberry to be an Eagle. At least anytime soon. I think the team plans on getting a look at their young guys in spring drills and perhaps into training camp before making a move at corner. If they’re failing to see encouraging progress, they might go out and sign someone like Xavier Rhodes (Jonathan Gannon connection!) to a bargain deal similar to how they did with Nelson last year.
That’s my read on the situation. But maybe I’m wrong! What say you?
Should the Eagles sign James Bradberry?
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