The swirling trade rumors that engulfed Budda Baker as an unforgiving hurricane ready to blast the Gulf Coast have mostly dissipated. Yes, the All-Pro safety remains without a contract extension but he doesn’t appear to be going anywhere.
Baker, who has two years and $27.3 million left on his current deal, had been lobbying hard to join the Philadelphia Eagles. He even openly pined for Nick Sirianni in a well-publicized interview back in April. But all that pandering and posturing is in the rear-view mirror after Baker revealed he won’t be skipping training camp.
“Oh yeah, of course, I’ll be there when it’s time to be there,” Baker told Cameron Cox of 12News in Phoenix. “When it’s time to be there I’ll be there smiling and (be) the same regular guy that I am.”
The five-time Pro Bowler has been absent so far from voluntary offseason workouts and OTAs. Not to worry. The Arizona Cardinals are giving him his space, and Baker doesn’t plan to cause a ruckus. He does want a new contract, though, so if something doesn’t get done between now and then … well, hope springs eternal of the Eagles possibly pulling off a blockbuster trade at the buzzer.
“For me personally, I’m just letting the business aspect handle the business aspect. Letting my agent handle all that type of stuff,” Baker told Cox. “I’m continuing to have tunnel vision on my work ethic, being the best person I can be outside of football, and just enjoying life. Enjoying this offseason, enjoying working hard each and every day, and just excited to go back and play football again.”
Eagles Land All-Pro Safety in Mock Trade
Bleacher Report has been churning out more mock trades than the Kardashians do reality shows this offseason. Their latest proposal, courtesy of Kristopher Knox, sends Budda Baker to Philadelphia in exchange for a 2024 fifth-round pick and a 2025 third-round pick. In it, the Eagles absorb his $13 million base salary and slide him right into a starting role alongside newcomer Terrell Edmunds.
Philadelphia, which has $12.7 million in cap space, wouldn’t have to create a ton of space to absorb Baker’s $13 million base salary. He would be a superior replacement for Gardner-Johnson over free-agent addition Terrell Edmunds and perhaps more ready than third-round pick Sydney Brown.
Cardinals Officially Release DeAndre Hopkins
The Cardinals officially released DeAndre Hopkins on May 30, thus ending four days of lingering trade speculation. The five-time Pro Bowler is free to sign with any franchise that wants to bring the star receiver in. And, in turn, work out a long-term contract extension.
The Eagles have been loosely linked to Hopkins, although the favorites to land him are the Buffalo Bills or Kansas City Chiefs. Both teams had “substantive” trade talks prior to Arizona dropping him, per Albert Breer. Hopkins is minding his own business by keeping quiet and letting his agent do the dirty work.
“We keep close attention to the tabloids,” Hopkins said, “but we don’t put anything out in the tabloids ourselves, we just — DeAndre Hopkins gonna do what DeAndre Hopkins is gonna do when I’m on the field. That’s all that matters.”