Sign ‘Em Up
ITB: Hargrave, Slay Need New Deals
The Philadelphia Eagles defense boasts multiple Pro Bowlers.
How long it can remain that way, with key players due for a contract extension?
On the latest edition of the Inside the Birds podcast, Adam Caplan and Geoff Mosher delved into potential player extensions on the defensive side of the ball.
Javon Hargrave (3 years, $39 million)
Geoff Mosher: “He enters the third year of a three-year deal. With the rising rate of defensive tackles, especially good ones, it makes sense to get him extended now, maybe on another three-year deal. I would say it would be smart to do it now instead of waiting until the end of the year.”
Adam Caplan: “Other than Aaron Donald, for the first six games last season, he was the top in pressures. Hargrave was playing out of his mind. He’s a really good football player and he’s got scheme versatility…The Eagles have to look at their cap situation. They have less than $7 million. If they think they need more cap space, it would behoove them to do this [extension] now. It would give them more cap space at the end of the season Any unused cap space can be moved to next year. That is a trick the Eagles have used for years.”
Mosher: “With Hargrave, you’ve had him here for two years. You know what he is. The closer he gets to free agency – and he’s only got this coming year – the [higher] his price tag theoretically is.”
Caplan: “Hargrave right now is making $13 million a year. There are a bunch of guys in the $13 million range and then it jumps to almost $17 million. This is where he comes in. Hargrave is 29. He’s shown no slowing down. What if the tape, pressure numbers, sack numbers are better? If he blows it up, the Eagles will rue that day they didn’t extend him. I’d be shocked if this deal doesn’t get done either during the season or before the season.”
Fletcher Cox (1 year, $14 million)
Caplan: “If the pressure numbers are great, I’m all for bringing him back. As we said on the last show, $14 million for a fading player, I didn’t see it.”
Mosher: “It’s a difficult precedent that they set. If he has a better year than last year and he wants to come back on a one-year deal, now you have to give him over $14 million that he signed for because he theoretically deserves a pay raise for playing better.”
Darius Slay (3 years, $45 million)
Caplan: “He has actually had two restructures. They did what they always do: They lowered the base salary significantly this season to $1.2 million. Because of the signing bonus, he still has a $9.371 million cap number. Here’s the problem: because of two restructures, the cap number for next year is absurd. His base salary is 17 million in 2023. His cap number is an unhealthy $26.01 million – and because of the two restructures he has three dummy years through 2026. You got to be careful with older players. He turns 32 in February.”
Mosher: “This is a situation where I can see them waiting a little bit. With a player this age, you want to be completely sure and maybe wait until October or early November.”
Caplan: “I would do another three-year deal, fully guaranteed the first two years. You got to be able to get out after the first two years because at 34, you got to think the guy won’t have a lot left, and he turns 32 in January. And again, in 2023 the cap number is $26 million, you can’t play on that cap number. You got to lower it.”
– Benjamin Paul is a staff writer for InsideTheBirds.com.
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