March 1, 2023   3 MIN READ

Safety Nets

The Intel With Greg Cosell: Deep Class Of Free-Agent Safeties Poised For Big Paydays


Both starting safeties for the Philadelphia Eagles are pending free agents, joining a class that features multiple All-Pros at the position.

On the latest episode of “The Intel With Greg Cosell,” ITB hosts Adam Caplan and Geoff Mosher were joined by Greg Cosell to evaluate the upcoming free agent safety class.

The Eagles will look to pay C.J. Gardner-Johnson before he hits the open market

C.J. Gardner-Johnson

Greg Cosell: “He just sees the game exceptionally well. He’s very intuitive, very understanding of what’s going on. So much of playing safety, particularly when you’re playing on the back end, is understanding what comes from two-by-two sets,  three-by-one sets. That’s what you do all week in film study.”

Marcus Epps

Cosell: “He’s a complete safety. Not a phenomenal athlete, which is why you wouldn’t talk about him among the top five or six safeties, but I thought he played downhill in the run game really well, good tackler, filled well in the hole. I think he can play in the backend. He read routes really well.”

Jessie Bates

Cosell: “He’s a backend safety for the most part. He’s got post and split-field range to cover grass. He has scheme versatility, can play from depth and spin down in coverage, he can play in the box.”

Jordan Poyer

Cosell: “He is the epitome of a guy that’s not a superior athlete, but just knows how to play. He can match tight ends in coverage, he can track the ball from a single-high safety alignment, he can play split safety alignments, multiple roles in sub-packages. He has great play speed and range.”

Donovan Wilson

Cosell: “This guy always shows up on film. He’s probably better playing downhill. He will hit you, he has a really good frame. For the most part, he’s better closer to the line of scrimmage.”

Julian Love

Cosell: “He offers a diverse skillset because he can matchup and play man-to-man coverage, but he can also play in the backend and showed good enough range to be a single-high player. He’s a smart football player.”

Juan Thornhill

Cosell: “He’s a backend player for the most part. He really didn’t become a full-time starter until this year when Daniel Sorenson left. He has great length and really good size. I think he does have good ball skills.”

– Benjamin Paul is a staff writer for

Listen to the latest “The Intel With Greg Cosell” podcast with Greg Cosell, Adam Caplan and Geoff Mosher:

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