Philadelphia Eagles

Will Eagles pursue the big-time CB who just hit free agency?


Another pretty good cornerback is suddenly on the free agent market, and it's one that could make sense for the Eagles.

Steven Nelson, who accused the Steelers of holding him hostage in a tweet earlier in the day... 

...was released Tuesday afternoon.

The Steelers had been trying to trade Nelson but soon after his tweet they simply released him.

The question now is what kind of contract is Nelson looking for. And in light of the Giants giving Adoree’ Jackson a three-year, $39 million deal with $26.5 million guaranteed, can the cornerback-starved Eagles afford someone like Nelson?

The Eagles scheduled a visit with Jackson for Monday, but he signed with the Giants before he made it to Philly.

Nelson, originally a 3rd-round pick of the Chiefs in 2015, spent the last two years with the Steelers. He has seven interceptions over the last three seasons and is considered an above-average starter. According to an article from CBS Sports, quoting figures from Tru Media Stats, he allowed a passer rating of just 57.0 over the past two years when quarterbacks targeted him.

But the market for cornerbacks keeps going up and as bad as the Eagles need a CB2 opposite Darius Slay, Nelson just might be too expensive.

So it really comes down to how much money he wants. 

The good news is that a bunch of free agent corners have already signed, so a lot of teams have already addressed their cornerback needs. William Jackson signed with Washington, Shaq Griffin with the Jaguars, Ronald Darby with the Broncos, Kyle Fuller with the Broncos, Patrick Peterson with the Vikings, Chidobe Awuzie with the Cowboys and so on. 

The bad news is that those signings have raised market value at a position the Eagles desperately need help.

Nelson had one year left on a three-year, $25.5 million contract he signed before the 2019 season, and if he’s looking for a deal in the neighborhood of Griffin (three years, $40 million), Jackson or Darby (three years, $30 million), it’s just hard to imagine the Eagles coming anywhere near that figure considering their cap situation and Darius Slay’s sizable contract, which the Eagles just restructured.

But Howie Roseman has been known to find a way in the past when there’s a free agent he really wants, and other than Slay, the cupboard is really bare for the Eagles at cornerback, where Avonte Maddox is the best of the next group of guys.

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