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Eagles News: James Bradberry to ... the Cowboys?

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 3/13/23.

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Philadelphia Eagles v Dallas Cowboys Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Let’s get to the Philadelphia Eagles links ...

13 NFL free agency predictions on Cowboys, Patriots, Bears, and Lamar Jackson - SB Nation
Dallas Cowboys sign James Bradberry. C.J. Gardner-Johnson might not be the only member of the Eagles 2022 secondary on his way out of Philadelphia. Darius Slay has been given permission to explore a trade, and James Bradberry is set to hit free agency as well. Heading into the offseason, the Dallas Cowboys have needs at wide receiver, and cornerback. They would be wise to add Bradberry and put him across from Trevon Diggs, giving the Cowboys a very solid 1-2 punch in the secondary. Then they can add to the wide receiver room via the draft. Or...they could do this.

Some encouraging signs from James Bradberry on eve of free agency - NBCSP
“I know there’s definitely interest from the Eagles,” Bradberry said, according to Anderson’s tweet. “I would love to play for the Eagles. I definitely see how bright the future is for the team. I’m just waiting to hear on the exact terms from them. “I believe they’re also waiting for what the market tells us as well, because I’m also anticipating interest from other teams, too. So they told me whoever calls, just make sure I also give them a chance to match.”Bradberry said a few days after the Super Bowl the two determining factors where he would sign were the chance to return to the postseason and of course money. “I think it will be a combination of winning and money,” he said on locker cleanout day. “Those two things are the most important to me – being on a good roster, having the ability to get to the playoffs and make a run in the playoffs. But also I don’t want to play for cheap, you know?” Bradbery’s situation could be affected by close friend and secondary colleague Darius Slay, whose own contract situation is another issue facing the Eagles right now.

Eagles mock mailbag: Free agency, offseason questions the team could ask - The Athletic
I would be surprised if Bradberry returns — especially if Slay is back. It seems unlikely the Eagles will commit big money this year to two cornerbacks north of 30, and Bradberry earned the big contract that’s coming his way. Gardner-Johnson’s age (25) and versatility would make him the type of player the Eagles would try to keep, and they were willing to pay big for Marcus Williams last season. But if Gardner-Johnson makes top-of-the-market money, it might be too rich for Philadelphia. My guess is the Eagles are patient with the secondary. Remember: Bradberry and Gardner-Johnson weren’t added until after the draft last year. I don’t think Sean Desai will know his five likely starters until then.

Free Agency Preview - Iggles Blitz
The smart option is probably for the Eagles to draft a CB. Rookies can come in and contribute right away. The Eagles have had luck in finding veteran corners in recent years. They traded for Darius Slay back in 2020. In 2021 they signed Steve Nelson in July. Last year they added Bradberry in May. The Eagles don’t have to rush into making a move. If they want to sign a young corner, Byron Murphy or Sean Murphy-Bunting could be good options. If they want a veteran, Patrick Peterson would make sense. He will turn 33 this summer, but still had 5 INTs last year and could be a good temporary solution. Marcus Peters is another older corner. He’s been a playmaker throughout his career. I think they’ll wait to see what happens with the draft.

Scratch one name linked to Cowboys as Jalen Ramsey is traded to Dolphins - Blogging The Boys
Ramsey was seen by many as a logical target for the Cowboys, who had some real cornerback issues after Anthony Brown and Jourdan Lewis were both lost to IR last season. He is one of the top corners in the league, and the thought of him in the secondary alongside Travon Diggs was certainly appealing. But, as with all the big names linked to Dallas in the past few years, it was something that was never very likely to happen. First, ever since the Brandon Carr acquisition and the trade up to snag Morris Claiborne, both of which were seen as not living up to the expectations, the Cowboys have become very risk averse to investing too much cap space or draft capital in players. Their normal approach now is to avoid big trades or free agent signings and to prefer trading back to trading up when they do elect to move around in the draft. The owners, particularly EVP Stephen Jones, are very committed to their way of doing things. They are willing to sometimes package late-round picks to move up, or to send them to other teams for a player they think can help, like the sixth-rounder they used to acquire Johnathan Hankins last season. Amari Cooper is the exception to this in the recent past.

Eagles’ departures will hammer home how brutal the Super Bowl loss was - PhillyVoice
If you want to believe and dream wholeheartedly, I won’t stop any fan from doing that. That’s the beauty of fandom, the highs and lows that make the eventual championship win oh-so sweet. I can’t, however, shake the feeling that I just covered the best Eagles team of all time, they didn’t get it done on the big stage and the path back there is as fierce as a trek to Mordor. Frodo and the gang, against all odds, did finish the job, so maybe this Eagles fellowship gets it done next February, but windows are always smaller than we want to believe. If this was this group’s best shot at winning it all, the loss will hurt more as the years go on than the collective hangover that the Delaware Valley had on the morning of Feb. 13.

Eagles All-22 Film Review: Probably need to say goodbye to Miles Sanders - BGN
Spotrac has his market value at 2 years $14m which would rank 10th at the position on a per-year basis. It is hardly a huge commitment, but it is still a lot for a team with cap limitations. The Eagles need money this year and I don’t think they can afford to commit any to a running back. I do think Sanders is probably better than a lot of people think, and he did have a really good year as a runner, but I just don’t think this is a smart choice. However, I will add, that the Eagles do need to replace Sanders. Those of you who have followed me for a while know I really like Trey Sermon and I would love him to get a chance, but there is no way the Eagles should go into the season next year with Kenneth Gainwell and Boston Scott as their 1 and 2. The running back is a big part of this Eagles’ offense and it may have to carry the team next year, so this team needs a legitimate option at starting running. I just don’t think that guy will be Miles Sanders.

How much salary cap space do the Eagles have in 2023? - DraftKings Nation
Philadelphia Eagles 2023 salary cap space (as of March 13, 6 a.m.). Over The Cap: $6,602,537. NFLPA public salary cap report: TBD. The OTC numbers reflect all reported deals even if paperwork is not completely finalized with the league and/or the players’ association. The NFLPA numbers reflect all deals in which paperwork has been finalized and submitted to the players’ association.

NFC free agency needs: Cowboys, Giants, Packers among teams that must prioritize wide receiver -
While the Eagles’ defense had success in 2022 by recording 70 sacks and causing pressure on 33.4 percent of dropbacks, the unit will likely undergo changes this offseason. The Eagles retained Brandon Graham on a one-year deal, but other key members of the defensive front, Javon Hargrave and Fletcher Cox, are set for free agency. As for the secondary, Philly allowed a -6.4 completion percentage over expected on passes of 10 or more air yards last season, and though the Eagles can credit impending free agents C.J. Gardner-Johnson and James Bradberry for such success, it might be a challenge for GM Howie Roseman to keep this group together. Not to mention, Darius Slay could also be on his way out. With running backs Miles Sanders and Boston Scott hitting the market, Philly may choose to move on in favor of someone new who’ll pair well with dual-threat QB Jalen Hurts.

Trade Notes: Jalen Ramsey goes MIA, Bears Send No. 1 Pick to Panthers for D.J. Moore and More - FMIA
Sam Bradford was in Carson Wentz’s league for costly players. From Shaun Meyer: “You may very well be right that no player has cost so much and delivered so little as Carson Wentz, but since you did say ‘in NFL history,’ I’d like to nominate Sam Bradford as a contender. I’d love to see a similar breakdown.” I got 12 such emails in the past few days, all saying, What about Sam Bradford? It is comparable. Let’s see: Wentz has earned an average of $18.39 million in seven NFL season. He has not won a playoff game. In his best year, 2017, Wentz went 11-2 as a starter for Philadelphia with 33 TD passes before injuring his knee and being lost for the season—the year the Eagles won the Super Bowl. To acquire Wentz in trade, three teams traded a total of nine picks for him—three first-round picks, a second-, four third-round picks and a fourth-. Bradford earned an average of $16.24 million in eight NFL seasons. He never won a playoff game. In his best year, 2016, Bradford completed a league-best 71.6 percent of his passes with a 20-to-5 TD-to-interception radio for the Vikings. To acquire Bradford in trade, two teams dealt—combined—picks in the first, second and fourth rounds. The big difference, obviously, is that teams spent eight picks in the first three rounds to acquire Wentz, while teams spent two picks in the first three rounds to acquire Bradford. It’s close, but the wasted value for Wentz outweighs the waste for Bradford.

Washington Commanders Free Agency: Daron Payne signs 4-year, $90 million deal - Hogs Haven
The Washington Commanders have signed DT Daron Payne to a 4-year, $90 million deal with $60 million guaranteed. He was set to be a free agent next week, but Washington placed the non-exclusive franchise tag on him which would have paid him $18.937 million for the 2023 season. They planned on negotiating a long-term deal with Payne, and have now locked him up along with Jonathan Allen last year, to bring stability to their defensive line. Daron Payne was playing on a 5th year option contract last year, and had the best season of his career. Payne had 11.5 sacks, 64 combined tackles, 20 QB hits, and 5 passes defended. He was voted an alternate to the Pro Bowl games this year, and was in Las Vegas to participate. Payne was looking to get paid as he entered free agency for the first time, and he is now the 2nd-highest paid DT behind Aaron Donald. [BLG Note: Great news for Javon Hargrave.]

Sterling Shepard returning to New York Giants, per report - Big Blue View
Sterling Shepard is returning to the New York Giants for the 2023 NFL season, according to a report from Jeremy Fowler of ESPN. The 30-year-old wide receiver has missed significant chunks of the last two seasons with injuries. He played only seven games (with 36 receptions) in 2021 before missing the rest of the season with a torn Achilles tendon. Last season, he had 13 receptions in three games before suffering a torn ACL that sidelined him for the remainder of the season. Paul Schwartz of the New York Post is reporting that Shepard is getting a one-year, veteran minimum deal. Shepard appeared to confirm the news via his Instagram page. That makes this a low-risk, high-reward signing for the Giants. Art Stapleton provided more details on Shepard’s deal. It is a one-year deal with a total value of $1.317 million, $1.165 million base salary, $38,125 per game active roster bonus.

Celebrating the Life of Bud Grant - Daily Norseman
Philadelphia Eagles: 1952-53. Bud decided to play football again after his two-year stint with the Lakers and signed with the Eagles who had drafted him in the first-round two years earlier. He had a successful if unusual two-year career with the Eagles. His first season, Bud played linebacker and led the team in sacks. His second season, he switched to offensive end and finished second in the league in both receptions (56) and receiving yards (997). But after two seasons with the Eagles, Bud reportedly told Eagles’ team president Frank McNamee he didn’t like Philadelphia nor the people of Philadelphia and decided to move back closer to home- to Winnipeg. It was also reported that the Eagles weren’t willing to pay Bud what he thought he was worth, so he contacted the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and became the first professional football player to “play out his option” and switch teams. Apparently, the Blue Bombers offered Grant the rich sum of $10,000/year to play for them, while the Eagles offered only $7,000.


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