Eagles Star’s $70 Million Contract Named One of NFL’s Best

howie roseman

Getty Philadelphia Eagles GM Howie Roseman.

Philadelphia Eagles general manager Howie Roseman has been no stranger to adding veteran playmakers to buttress a Super Bowl-caliber roster in recent years, and those moves have mostly been big winners.

Even before Roseman and the Eagles won the Shaq Leonard sweepstakes, signing the former three-time All-Pro linebacker despite an overture from the Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia previously plucked veteran safety Kevin Byard from the Tennessee Titans just before the NFL trade deadline.

Byard has already made a big impact on the Eagles’ secondary, producing 42 total tackles with one interception through his first five games in Philadelphia.

While Byard has helped backstop an inconsistent secondary, the flexibility provided by how the cap hits on his contract are structured could ultimately wind up being an even more valuable asset to a general manager as aggressive as Roseman, according to ESPN’s Aaron Schatz, who listed Byard’s contract as one of the NFL’s best relative to the value he provides his team.

Schatz noted that “Philadelphia’s complex use of long-term contracts with void years made this a tough choice” — for other teams he featured the best veteran contract deals, but for the Eagles he named a newcomer.

The Biggest Benefit of Kevin Byard’s Contract

The Eagles have been one of the teams most aggressive about signing players to long-term contracts and structuring those contracts to maximize cap space. But unlike the structure of Jalen Hurts’ deal, which continues to pay significant dividends for the Eagles, Roseman deserves only partial credit for Byard’s, Schatz point out.

“So I cheated a little bit and chose a player who was just recently traded to the Eagles,” Schatz wrote in the December 1 story. “That trade meant that most of the bonuses on Byard’s contract accelerated onto Tennessee’s cap, not Philadelphia’s cap. The Eagles are on the hook for a cap number of just $1.7 million for Byard this year. Next year’s cap number is colossal, but the Eagles can get out of most of it by cutting Byard before a March 19 roster bonus. That would leave just $1.4 million in dead money on the cap for next season. That $3.1 million, even for just half a season of a Pro Bowl-level safety, is a pretty good deal.”

The way Roseman and the Eagles have structured deals has allowed Philadelphia to continually be in the mix for players the organization believes can boost their chances of winning the Super Bowl, including being linked to recently released tight end Zach Ertz and others.

The Titans signed Byard to a five-year, $70.5 million deal in 2019 that was restructured into a two-year, $25.1 million deal in July 2023. The “colossal” cap number Schatz wrote about is $14.3 million if the Eagles do not release Byard. That would be the third highest cap hit on the team, after those of offensive tackle Lane Johnson ($16.1 million) and linebacker Haason Reddick ($20.9 million), according to Over the Cap.

Former Eagles Make College Football Hall of Fame

The Eagles will be well represented at this year’s College Football Hall of Fame enshrinement.

Former Eagles stars Brian Westbrook, Troy Vincent, and Jeremy Maclin will be members of the this year’s class of inductees, after their stellar careers at Villanova, Wisconsin, and Missouri, respectively.

Vincent and Westbrook have previously been inducted into the Eagles’ Hall of Fame, for their impact they left on the franchise.

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