NFL Free Agency- Stay or Go: Marcus Epps

The Philadelphia Eagles have 20 free agents heading into the NFL offseason according to contract supersite Sportrac.  

Of the pending free agents, 13 of 20 were key contributors to the Eagles run towards another Lombardi Trophy.   

The staff from Sports Talk Philly –editors Paul Bowman and Michael Lipinski and Eagles writers Jennifer McGraw and Maranda Jo Shinn– have decided to play a game of “stay or go” with Jeffery Lurie’s money!

The crew deliberates on safety Marcus Epps.

Bill Streicher, USA Today Sports

Name: Marcus Epps

Position: S

Age: 27

Acquired: 2019 Mid-Season Waiver Claim

Achievements: N/A

2022 Regular Season Stats: 17G/17GS, 94 tackles, 70 solo tackles, 6 PD, 1 FF

Market Value: N/A

Potential Contract: N/A

Paul Bowman, STP Editor: I think the Eagles will do all they can to keep CJGJ and with the emergence of Reed Blankenship, they have a pair of potential starters. Still, I think the Eagles would like to retain Epps and reward another home-grown player particularly with second-year man Blankenship being the only quality player the Eagles currently have under contract for the position in 2023. My major concern here is that the Eagles may have to compete with others around the league. There’s probably 6-8 “name” safeties that teams may prefer to sign, but the Eagles now have two former defensive coordinators taking over defenses (Jim Schwartz, Browns and Jonathan Gannon, Cardinals) that may serve to inflate Epps’ value above what it might have otherwise been. That’s yet to be seen.

Verdict: Stay (provided Epps isn’t offered a mega deal in FA)

Michael Lipinski, STP Editor: Marcus Epps should be a shoe-in to return to the nest but it seems like the Birds might have some other competition from around the league.  There has been sports radio conjecture connecting Epps to former defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon in Arizona.  A scenario where another team or teams gets involved will likely inflate Epps’ value.  He’s a very good player and nice piece to the defense but he’s not worth getting into a bidding war over.

Verdict: Stay but not if it means a bidding war

Jenn McGraw, Eagles Writer: This is such a hard decision because our safety room is already pretty thin, but I think we need to prioritize keeping C.J. Gardner-Johnson and Reed Blankenship moving forward. After that, then we can discuss who should stay and go in that regard, such as Epps.

Verdict: Possibly Go

Maranda Jo Shinn, Eagles Writer: Marcus Epps finished third on the team with 94 tackles while also posting 6 pass breakups, a forced fumble, and no interceptions. When called upon, he brings a toughness and different kind of physicality to the field- I think we could give him 20-25 snaps a game and he could do some damage. As a slept-on asset, he puts the work in when called upon, and for that alone we should keep him in the Birds secondary position that he so thrives in.

Verdict: Stay

Consensus: Epps is a guy who is hard to project since it’s unclear what his valuation might be on the open market. He’s a player that everyone on our staff would like to have back if there was no cap and this was like the MLB, but it all depends on the contract offers he may get from other teams whether or not it makes sense for the Eagles to offer him a contract that competes with those offers.