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The Eagles have a ton of free agents waiting until Jalen Hurts' contract extension is over

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As for the Eagles’ 20 future unrestricted free agents, business is off until the end of the season.

A survey of the majority of these players or their agents over the past month revealed that few, if any, attempts have been made to extend existing contracts ahead of the offseason.

The unlikely. 1 reason: Jalen hurts.

The quarterback is eligible to receive a new contract after this third season, and the massive expected salary – somewhere in the $50 million per year range – will impact every major salary cap decision the Eagles make in the future. over the next few years or more.

The team can actually start negotiations with Hurts from January 1. 9, the day after the end of the regular season. Technically, there may be a contract made during the playoffs, although Hurts can’t sign it until the Eagles are eliminated.

Both sides, however, may want to avoid the distraction until the football is over. General manager Howie Roseman certainly has a plan in place and would prefer to be first out before overtime for quarterbacks Joe Burrow, Justin Herbert and Tua Tagovailoa. But the structure of a potential deal will also have a ripple effect.

There are, of course, a myriad of other reasons the Eagles might not retain Miles Sanders, CJ Gardner-Johnson and their other free agents that could hit the market when the league’s new year kicks off on March 15. . The rest of the season could have affected their market value.

Roseman relatively quickly bounced back from a purgatory ceiling after eating dead money from the Carson Wentz trade and other bad deals. But Hurts’ franchise contract will be a monolith and will make it difficult to bring back players who come out of good seasons, even those who are homegrown.

Here’s a look at each of the free agents, sorted by tiers from least to most likely to return:

A quick look around the rest of the NFL and there could be as many as a dozen quarterback jobs open after this season. Gardner Minshew does not want to be a backup. That could possibly be his reality, but it’s hard to believe there won’t be suitors who will at least give him the opportunity to compete for a starting spot.

He had strong numbers in 20 starts for the Jaguars in his first two seasons and won here last December when he was forced to replace the injured Hurts. Minshew, 26 years old has only been on the field cleaning this season, but if the Eagles land the No. 1 seed next week, he could get two showcase starts.

“I think a high tide lifts all ships,” Minshew said when asked about the Eagles’ success increasing his value. “I think when you win, it uplifts everyone. So I think just being a part of something so special here is good for me, and I just want to keep learning as much as I can.

The rise of Jordan Mailata from football neophyte to starting left tackle has softened the Andrew Dillard missed in the first round. The best draft of 2019 acquitted himself every time he was pressed for the job, but the Eagles understandably didn’t choose his fifth-year option in the spring.

Dillard has been hanging in the market for the past few years, but Roseman’s asking price was significant. The GM has long appreciated the depth of the offensive line. Dillard, despite struggling early in his career, should receive offers that reflect his positional value.

The 27-year-old left tackle has added guard to his resume this season, but that versatility won’t matter with teams expected to consider him a starter.

“I think people know I’m a left tackle,” Dillard said. “I’m just doing what I have to do for the team right now.”

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Roseman has touched on nearly every addition he’s made to the team this year, but the acquisition of Robert Quinn for a fourth round before the trade deadline was a relative failure. The defensive end didn’t do much in the five games he played for the Eaglesand now he’s on the injured list after a knee injury until the end of the regular season.

Quinn could do something in the playoffs, but the 32-year-old was brought here primarily for the hopeful Super Bowl run.

Defensive tackles Ndamukong Suh35, and Linval-Joseph, 34, made bigger contributions after Roseman lured the veterans out of semi-retirement. Both seem motivated to win second titles and not just to pocket one last paycheck. But the Eagles will likely have to find cheaper, younger backups for next season.

Might bettor Brett Kern, who signed this week, will supplant the injured Arryn Siposs? Maybe for the playoffs, but the 36-year-old hasn’t been on a roster all season for a reason.

Miles Sander is healthy and having the best season of his four-year career. He already has over 1,000 rushing yards and has 11 touchdowns. He patiently hits the hole, runs harder and makes fewer mistakes. He’s going to be paid, which will likely cost the Eagles dearly.

Running backs have been devalued across the league, but Roseman has been more reluctant than others to offer a second or third contact beyond a year. LeSean McCoy was the last local running back he extended on a multi-year contract.

Sanders, 25, would be the first to say that Hurts and the Eagles’ O line gave him extra running room. He has more rushing yards before contact than any other running back in the NFL. It’s not a blow for Sanders, but likely a stat that will have Roseman looking for more profitable options in the position.

CJ Gardner Johnson he’s missed the last two games, but his six interceptions still have him tied for the NFL lead. Roseman, knowing the Saints were not going to honor Gardner-Johnson’s desire for a new contract, traded for the cornerback before the season and got him to safety.

Gardner-Johnson had some early hiccups, and he’s still not completely polished in the position, but he’s made up for it with athleticism and instinct. He is only 23 and has made his contractual intentions clear. The Eagles are unlikely to match the bids at a non-priority position.

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Starting linebackers TJ Edwards and white kyzir are in contract years. The Eagles can’t keep both, and with Nakobe Dean waiting in the wings, they’re probably not that worried. Edwards, 26in his first full season as a starting center linebacker, has been excellent.

The undrafted former rookie won’t receive the national recognition he deserves, but NFL evaluators should know his worth, and the Eagles have been reluctant to dip into their portfolio for linebackers. White signed a one-year contract last offseason and helped upgrade the unit.

Dean played in the middle at Georgia, so he could theoretically step into Edwards’ shoes. But the Eagles, based on past practice, will likely try harder to keep a player they’ve nurtured than a free agent — depending on price, of course.

James Bradberry was unable to test for free agency as he would have liked last offseason. The New York Giants retained the cornerback after the draft before releasing him in early May. For that reason, he’ll probably want to see how much he can fetch on the open market, especially given how he’s played in 2022.

“First of all, I would look at all the teams in the running,” Bradberry said when asked how he would approach free agency. Of course, that’s when you look at the numbers, you look at the list, you look at the city, the region. There are a lot of variables that go into this decision.

This could be bad news for the Eagles if they hope to pair 29-year-old Bradberry alongside Darius Slay for next season or beyond.

Javon Hargrave He admitted that his next contract was on his mind in the spring, but he has settled into the rhythm of the season and has not recently considered the future. The defensive tackle is in the final year of the $39 million deal he signed in March 2020.

Hargrave has been the Eagles’ top interior lineman the past two seasons and has 15½ sacks over that 29-game stretch. He slipped under the free agent radar somewhat three years ago, so there may be more interest, even though he turns 30 in February.

He doesn’t get praise from his fellow O linemen, but keeps straight Isaac Seumalo has been almost as reliable as any of them. He hasn’t missed a beat since returning from a season-ending foot injury. The Eagles have replacements waiting in the wings, but the 29-year-old might not be too expensive, and Roseman enjoys the trenches.

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Whether Jason Kelsey wants to play another year, how could the Eagles say no? They may have drafted Cam Jurgens in the second round expecting the finish to be close, but Kelce is still competing at the All-Pro level.

The instinct here is that the 35-year-old will retire after the season, even if it doesn’t end with another ring. But if Kelce wants to back him up, Jurgens could slip to guard, which would make Seumalo expendable.

Cox Fletcher is not quite in the same category in terms of the ability to decide on its own. He nearly left after the Eagles released him last offseason. But he appears to want to end his career with the team that drafted him and may be willing to take another pay cut as a role player. Cox has been regressing for years, but when he turns it on, he can still be disruptive.

In terms of construction, the Eagles need low-roster players they can trust but don’t cost a lot. For various reasons, the following people are unlikely to get competitive offers that would take them away from the comfort of their current team.

Maybe the Eagles let them walk, but everyone has accepted their role in the team from the start (safety Marcus Epps), to save (receiver pascal pascal and run back Boston Scott), reserve (keep Sua Opeta) to long snapper (Rick Lovato).

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