Eagles fans got quite a shock when the news broke that Darius Slay would be cut. But it appears the reactions thinking he was gone were a bit hasty. Because now we know Darius Slay is staying in Philly. The two sides are expected to agree to a reworked deal.
With the move, the Eagles retain the CB room that gave up the least passing yards per game last season. James Bradberry was a 2nd Team All-Pro. Slay made the Pro Bowl and was named to the new Players Union All-Pro Team. They easily made for the best CB tandem in the league. But the common consensus was the Eagles would be able to hold on to both of them. At first it was assumed Bradberry would leave. When they resigned him it looked like it would be Slay who was gone. Now we know the Eagles somehow managed to hold on to both.
Where that leaves the Eagles in the CJ Gardner Johnson market? Who knows? One would think it would put them out of it. But we all thought they were out on both Bradberry and Slay at one point. Howie Roseman works in mysterious ways. The market for corners does not appear to be what Bradberry or Slay thought it would be. The Eagles were clear all along that they wanted to stay in on both players and let them go out and see if they could get better deals elsewhere. But the better deals never game. The Eagles seem to be using the same strategy with CJ. If another team blows him away, he will likely be gone. But if no other team wants to break the bank for a Safety, he could always return.
But whether they resign CJ or not, retaining both Bradberry and Slay is a massive move by Howie. The CB duo, along with Avonte Maddox, is a big reason why the team put up historic sack names. Some of those were just the Eagles rushers winning off the snap. But a lot of them were coverage snaps too.
The defense once thought to be in danger of losing most of its players, is coming together. Cornerback is no longer an immediate need. they retain Fletcher Cox and Brandon Graham to give the D-Line some consistency. Nakobe Dean and Jordan Davis are expected to be able to step into larger roles. There are still holes. But not nearly as many as first thought. And the Eagles have two first-round picks to start filling those remaining holes in.
Per Jeff McLane, the new deal will contain no new money, and open up some cap space for the Eagles.
Darius Slay’s reworked deal isn’t expected to include new money and should help clear salary cap space for the #Eagles this season, a source said. https://t.co/aDtyR2EK6m— Jeff McLane (@Jeff_McLane) March 16, 2023