The free agent that most Philadelphia Eagles fans want the team to re-sign might be returning after all. Multiple reports indicate that the Birds are making a strong push to retain the services of starting safety C.J. Gardner-Johnson.
I’m told Eagles are making a big push and trying to re-sign safety CJ Gardner Johnson pic.twitter.com/qUaRbRsTSA— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) March 15, 2023
#Eagles are trying to secure a long-term deal with C.J. Gardner Johnson, sources tell @theScore.— Jordan Schultz (@Schultz_Report) March 15, 2023
Not there yet, but they want him back.
CJGJ played very well for Philly after the team acquired him in a trade with the #Saints before the season. True ball-hawk, with 6 INTs.
But three different reporters saying as much:
#Eagles save $17.5M against the cap for 2023, but still take on the remaining $8.6M. Post-June 1 allows them to spread Slay's dead money into 2024.— Jeff McLane (@Jeff_McLane) March 15, 2023
They should have room and flexibility to re-sign C.J. Gardner-Johnson. Both sides want to get something done. Still work left ... https://t.co/EjMN0uVUDC
The Eagles cutting Darius Slay and losing multiple other defensive starters — Javon Hargrave, T.J. Edwards, Marcus Epps, Kyzir White — in free agency is certainly not ideal.
But at least the team could feel good about retaining two playmaking defensive backs in James Bradberry and CJGJ.
Considering he remains unsigned (as of this original publish time) after legal tampering began at noon on Monday, it seems like CJGJ’s market has not gone quite as he may have anticipated. The Eagles might be able to bring the NFL’s interceptions leader back on a relatively reasonable number? Such was the case for Bradberry.
We’ll see if the two sides can get something done or if CJGJ will be headed elsewhere. If he doesn't return, the Eagles will have two new starting safeties AND one new starting corner in 2023.