NFL Insider Not Optimistic About Eagles Signing Stud CB

Byron Jones

Getty Byron Jones

With NFL free agency set to kick off in only a matter of days, the rumor mill is heating up about what teams could land the league’s top free agents.

The Philadelphia Eagles are one of the many teams that could be a major player in free agency next week. The reigning NFC East champs are expected to upgrade both the wide receiver and cornerback positions this offseason.

In regards to the cornerback position, the Eagles have been linked to Darius Slay of the Detroit Lions, and unrestricted free agents Chris Harris Jr., Byron Jones.

All three cornerbacks would be an instant upgrade to a less than stellar Eagles secondary next season. However, NFL insider Adam Caplan is not high on Philadelphia’s chances to land Jones.

Caplan explained his reasoning on the latest episode of Inside The Birds with Geoff Mosher. The veteran NFL insider said that he is not “super optimistic” about Jones being an Eagle because of the many teams that will be involved for his services.

This latest piece of news coincides with Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports reported on Wednesday.

Robinson said that Jones’ market is expected to “start” at $16-$17 million per year, which would make him the highest-paid cornerback in the NFL. projected the 27-year-old defensive back’s market value at a five-year deal worth $70 million ($14.1 million).

Then to make matters more interesting, Tony Pauline of the Pro Football Network wrote last week to expect a bidding war between the Eagles and New York Giants.

It should not come as a surprise to the Giants in the market for Jones, especially with how their secondary performed last season. But as we see every year in free agency, there’s always one team willing to overspend.

What Does Jones Bring to the Table?

Therefore, the next question at hand, is should the Eagles put up the $16-$17 million per year or more for the 27-year-old cornerback?

One school of thought is that the Eagles can get a cheaper option in free agency or in the NFL Draft, which is not out of the realm of possibility. Philadelphia has 10 draft picks at their disposal and would be foolish by not at least drafting two young cornerbacks.

However, the other school of thought is that Jones is playmaker this team needs and gives you a legitimate No. 1 cornerback on Sundays.

Last season, the former safety turned cornerback accumulated 46 combined tackles, six pass deflections, and an interception in 14 games. Furthermore, Jones led all Dallas cornerbacks in completion percentage allowed on targets at 53.1.

When you compare that to what the Eagles’ starting outside cornerbacks (Jalen Mills, 57.4%, Ronald Darby, 64.2%) did last season. It is easy to see why Philadelphia has been a favorite to sign the 6-foot defensive playmaker.

Other Options at Cornerback for Eagles

As previously mentioned, the Eagles will be in a highly-contested battle for the services of Jones. There’s a chance that they could get him between $16-$17 million price tag but that could rise substantially.

If the latter of these two options happens, who else could Philadelphia be looking at to solve their cornerback woes? Here are some other free-agent options:

1. James Bradberry

2019 stats: 65 total tackles, 12 pass deflections, three interceptions

  1.  2. Chris Harris Jr.
  2. 2019 stats: 56 total tackles, six pass deflections, one interception
  3. Calculated market value: 3-yr, $33 million deal ($11 million AAV)

3. Bradley Roby

2019 stats: 38 total tackles, eight pass deflections, two interceptions

4. Jalen Mills

2019 stats: 41 total tackles, seven pass deflections, one interception

5. Prince Amukamara

2019 stats: 53 total tackles, 10 pass deflections

*Sleeper FA: Vernon Hargreaves III

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