Embed from Getty Images
By Paul Bowman, Sports Talk Philly Editor
The Senior Bowl oractices are taking place this week, which means scouting and draft preparation are taking place for all 32 NFL teams as they get a good look at draft-eligible players, available coaches and can probe other teams for potential trade ideas.
All the activity means that there will certainly be NFL News and some of that pertains to the Eagles.
On Tuesday night, Tony Pauline wrote for Pro Football Network that, “Word here in Mobile is that the Philadelphia Eagles will go hard after a cornerback in free agency. Chris Harris and Byron Jones are two of the names being thrown around, but I expect the Eagles to turn over every rock in free agency in an attempt to fill the position.“.
Jones and Harris are the top corners on the market this offseason, so corner looks to be the position that Howie Roseman intends to address the most via free agency.
Of the two, Jones is likely the better fit of the two, despite his being a Cowboy as Jones is younger and plays outside.
Chris Harris is an elite slot corner, but he is already 31 and the Eagles best corner play has come from Cre’Von LeBlance and Avonte Maddox in the slot; the Eagles have both of those players under contract in 2020.
Jones would cost more, but he is also the more likely of the two to leave his team as the Cowboys have just invested massive money into keeping Ezekiel Elliott and will have to do the same with both Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper to keep both of them. Both are likely to require record-setting deals for their positions and both will take effect immediately, unlike the contracts the Eagles have dealt out to players like Brandon Brooks and Lane Johnson. The cap hits those three players will carry in 2020 may very well take Dallas out of the running for Byron Jones.
Those two could just be the tip of the iceberg, however, as plenty of other talented players under 30 will be hitting the market, like James Bradberry, Logan Ryan, Trae Waynes and Kendall Fuller as well as veterans Jimmy Smith and Johnathan Joseph if the Eagles aim for older players.
Even if they sign one of those free agents, it remains rather likely that Jalen Mills is back in Philadelphia in 2020.
While a signing certainly wouldn’t preclude the Eagles from drafting a corner in the first round, a big free agent corner signing in Philadelphia would make it seem far more likely that the Eagles first-round pick ends up being a receiver instead of a corner.