For a team that hasn’t looked outside of its own building yet, the Philadelphia Eagles have been very busy in free agency. Contrary to the “Dream Team” signing period of 2011, 2012 has been more about taking care of their own players.
For the most part.
The first domino to fall when the league year started on Monday was a three-year extension for right tackle Todd Herremans. The deal gives Herremans $11-million in guaranteed money and would keep him in Philadelphia through 2016.
That was followed shortly by an extension for defensive end Trent Cole. Cole’s deal was for four-years and $48.525 million with $15 million guaranteed. The extension would keep Cole on the right end through 2017.
Then came the release of the longest-tenured Eagle, center Jamaal Jackson. Injuries ravaged his recent career and with Jason Kelce solidifying himself as a rookie, Jackson was expendable.
More news came as former second-round pick Winston Justice was traded to Indianapolis along with the 17th pick in the sixth round in return for a pick 11 spots higher. Justice’s departure frees up about $2.3 million in cap space.
In another move on the defensive side of the ball, the Eagles agreed to a one-year deal with space-eating defensive tackle Antonio Dixon, which should help shore up the middle.
With the appetizers cleared, it was time for the most savory portion of the Eagles’ offseason thus far.
After all the talk of what DeSean Jackson was and wasn’t worth, he and the Eagles finally agreed on an exact amount.
Jackson was signed to a five-year, $47 million dollar contract with $15 million guaranteed. The contract is said to be worth up to $51 million with escalators being reached. With that, DeSean Jackson was worth what he was asking for, at least to the Eagles.
Just to add a little extra, Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that the Eagles are currently negotiating with LeSean McCoy on a new deal. It is expected that McCoy will be paid similarly to star running backs Adrian Peterson and Chris Johnson.
In stark contrast to last year, the Eagles made their own players the top priority. Also, this latest group of moves shows maybe more emphatically than ever that the Eagles believe in the current roster and philosophy of the team.