How the Philadelphia Eagles Were Built

The “How Were They Built” series is a 32-part set of pieces showcasing how each team’s roster in the National Football League was constructed. I’ll dive into how the players were acquired, either by trade, the draft, or free agency, how much money is spent on each position, and give a brief summary of the the team. I will also give a bit of a 2018 outlook.

Here are the Philadelphia Eagles.

Name, Position (PS if on Practice Squad), College, (How Player was Acquired), 2017 Salary, When Player is a Free Agent

[dt_divider style=”thick” /]Defensive Backs

Malcolm Jenkins, S, Ohio State, (2014 UFA), $6,000,000, 2021

Rodney McLeod, S, Virginia, (2016 UFA), $4,000,000, 2021

Corey Graham, S, New Hampshire, (2017 FA), $1,775,000, 2018

Rasul Douglas, CB, West Virginia, (2017-3rd), $1,171,288, 2021

Ronald Darby, CB, Florida State, (2017 Trade with Bills), $800,426, 2019

Patrick Robinson, CB, Florida State, (2017 FA), $775,000, 2018

Jaylen Watkins, S, Florida, (2014-4th), $690,000, 2018

Jalen Mills, CB, LSU, (2016-7th), $540,000, 2020

Chris Maragos, S (IR), Wisconsin, (2014 UFA), $1,250,000, 2020

D.J. Killings, DB (PS), Central Florida, (2017 FA), $247,624, 2018

De’Vante Bausby, CB (PS), Pittsburg State, (2017 FA), $115,200, 2018

Tre Sullivan, S (PS), Shepherd, (11/17 FA), $57,600, 2018

Sidney Jones, CB (Non-Football Injury), Washington, (2017-2nd), $3,070,520, 2021

2017 Cash Spending: $20,492,658

[dt_divider style=”thick” /]Defensive Linemen

Tim Jernigan, DT, Florida State, (2017 Trade with Ravens), $11,017,284, 2022

Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State, (2012-1st), $9,000,000, 2023

Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee, (2017-1st), $7,951,016, 2022

Vinny Curry, DE, Marshall, (2012-2nd), $7,000,000, 2021

Brandon Graham, DE, Michigan, (2010-1st), $6,750,000, 2019

Chris Long, DE, Virginia, (2017 UFA), $2,250,000, 2019

Steven Means, DE, Buffalo, (2015 Signed from Texans practice squad), $800,000, 2019

Beau Allen, DT, Wisconsin, (2014-7th), $690,000, 2018

Elijah Qualls, DT, Washington, (2017-6th), $592,204, 2021

Destiny Vaeao, DT, Washington State, (2016 UDFA), $540,000, 2019

Bryan Braman, DE, West Texas A&M, (12/17 FA), $158,823, 2018

Winston Craig, DT (PS), Richmond, (12/17 FA), $28,000, 2018

2017 Cash Spending: $46,777,327

[dt_divider style=”thick” /]Linebackers

Mychal Kendricks, California, (2012-2nd), $5,000,000, 2020

Nigel Bradham, Florida State, (2016 UFA), $4,000,000, 2018

Najee Goode, West Virginia, (2013 Claimed off waivers from Buccaneers), $875,000, 2018

Kamu Grugier-Hill, Eastern Illinois, (2016 Claimed off waivers from Patriots), $540,000, 2020

Joe Walker, Oregon, (2016-7th), $465,000, 2020

Dannell Ellerbe, Georgia, (2017 FA), $370,588, 2018

Nathan Gerry, Nebraska, (2017-5th), $300,883, 2020

Jordan Hicks, (IR), Texas, (2015-3rd), $633,000, 2019

2017 Cash Spending: $12,184,471

[dt_divider style=”thick” /]Offensive Linemen

Lane Johnson, T, Oklahoma, (2013-1st), $7,984,375, 2022

Jason Kelce, C, Cincinnati, (2011-6th), $5,000,000, 2021

Brandon Brooks, G, Miami (OH), (2016 UFA), $5,000,000, 2021

Stefen Wisniewski, OL, Penn State, (2016 UFA), $2,525,000, 2020

Chance Warmack, G, Alabama, (2017 UFA), $1,713,125, 2019

Isaac Seumalo, G, Oregon State, (2016-3rd), $574,000, 2020

Halapoulivaati Vaitai, T, TCU, (2016-5th), $540,000, 2020

Will Beatty, T, Connecticut, (11/17 UFA), $370,588, 2018

Jason Peters, T (IR), Arkansas, (2009 Trade with Bills), $11,250,000, 2020

Josh Andrews, OL (PS), Oregon State, (2014 UDFA), $122,400, 2018

Darrell Greene, G (PS), San Diego State, (12/17 FA), $28,000, 2018

2017 Cash Spending: $35,107,488

[dt_divider style=”thick” /]Quarterbacks

Nick Foles, Arizona, (2017 UFA), $4,000,000, 2019

Nate Sudfeld, Indiana, (2017 FA), $285,882, 2019

Carson Wentz, (IR), North Dakota State, (2016-1st), $1,662,561, 2021

2017 Cash Spending: $5,948,443

[dt_divider style=”thick” /]Running Backs

LeGarrette Blount, Oregon, (2017 UFA), $1,250,000, 2018

Kenjon Barner, Oregon, (2017 FA), $568,235, 2018

Wendell Smallwood, West Virginia, (2016-5th), $540,000, 2020

Corey Clement, Wisconsin, (2017 UDFA), $475,000, 2020

Jay Ajayi, Boise State, (2017 Trade with Dolphins), $325,588, 2019

Darren Sproles, (IR), Kansas State, (2014 Trade with Saints), $4,000,000, 2018

Donnel Pumphrey, (IR), San Diego State, (2017-4th), $930,761, 2021

2017 Cash Spending: $8,089,584

[dt_divider style=”thick” /]Tight Ends

Zach Ertz, Stanford, (2013-2nd), $4,100,000, 2022

Brent Celek, Cincinnati, (2007-5th), $3,000,000, 2019

Trey Burton, Florida, (2014 UDFA), $2,746,000, 2018

Billy Brown (PS), Shepherd, (2017 UDFA), $122,400, 2018

2017 Cash Spending: $9,968,400

[dt_divider style=”thick” /]Wide Receivers

Alshon Jeffery, South Carolina, (2017 UFA), $16,000,000, 2022

Torrey Smith, Maryland, (2017 FA), $5,000,000, 2020

Nelson Agholor, USC, (2015-1st), $1,287,489, 2020

Mack Hollins, North Carolina, (2017-4th), $1,102,132, 2021

Shelton Gibson, West Virginia, (2017-5th), $722,237, 2021

Marcus Johnson, Texas, (2016 UDFA), $465,000, 2019

Greg Ward (PS), Houston, (2017 UDFA), $108,000, 2018

Bryce Treggs (PS), California, (12/17 FA), $21,600, 2018

Rashard Davis (PS), James Madison, (2017 FA), $7,200, 2018

2017 Cash Spending: $24,713,658

[dt_divider style=”thick” /]Special Teams

Donnie Jones, P, LSU, (2013 UFA), $1,250,000, 2020

Rick Lovato, LS, Old Dominion, (2016 FA), $540,000, 2019

Jake Elliott, K, Memphis, (2017 Signed from Bengals practice squad), $465,000, 2019

Caleb Sturgis, K (IR), Florida, (2015 FA), $1,050,000, 2018

2017 Cash Spending: $3,305,000

Despite the setbacks the Eagles faced under the Chip Kelly regime, some notable players were added like Jordan Hicks, Darren Sproles, Nelson Agholor and Lane Johnson. After his firing in late December of 2015, the hierarchy shifted back to general manager Howie Roseman. From there, he dealt what was a king’s ransom to Cleveland to select quarterback Carson Wentz second overall in the 2016 NFL Draft. To give him some receiving options after his rookie year, Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith were added while Agholor and tight end Zach Ertz were still developing. After the loss of three time pro bowl left tackle Tra Thomas to free agency, the Eagles went out and traded for another pro bowl player, Jason Peters. Despite adding running back LeGarrette Blount in the 2017 offseason, the Eagles traded with the Dolphins for Jay Ajayi, giving them a more potent running game. A month before the start of the season, the Eagles acquired cornerback Ronald Darby through a trade with Buffalo, a move that gave the defense a number one corner and with the uncertain return from injury from second round pick Sidney Jones. Safety Malcolm Jenkins was added to help sure up the secondary and strengthen a defense that allowed the most passing yards in 2013. After the injury to kicker Caleb Sturgis at the beginning of the 2017 season, Philadelphia signed Jake Elliott from Cincinnati’s practice squad. If you recall, Elliott hit a 61-yard field goal as time expired to beat the Giants in week three.

For 2018

Probably the first order of business is to check up on the health on quarterback Carson Wentz and linebacker Jordan Hicks. Tight end Brent Celek has tumbled down the roster and could be released before the start of the new season. Trey Burton, the emerging number two behind Zach Ertz will be a free agent leaving the Eagles with a depth issue at the position. The physicality pending free agent LeGarrette Blount provides when pounding the rock will be missed in the backfield. He’s a different runner then what the Eagles have and should be re-signed. 2016 Free agent acquisition Nigel Bradham has had another stellar season at linebacker for the Eagles. He might be looking for a payday this offseason. With two other linebackers in the mix to hit free agency, the Eagles would need a linebacker anyway even if they re-sign Bradham. A relatively young secondary with starters drafted in the past two years should get better with experience from 2017. Possible extensions would need to be done for Jay Ajayi, Ronald Darby and Brandon Graham as they will be free agents in 2019. With the head coach vacancies filled, Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz and quarterbacks coach John DeFilipo look to remain intact for next year. The 2019 cycle may be a different story. However, offensive coordinator Frank Reich’s contract is set to expire after the Super Bowl. Teams such as Indianapolis, New England, and Tennessee are still in need of an offensive coordinator. We’ll see what happens what Philadelphia and Reich decide on in February.

Follow Derek on Twitter @derekdonald91. Check out Derek’s other work here, including a breakdown of the NFC West, a look at each of Casey Hayward’s 2016 interceptions and his analysis of how the Lions use Golden Tate out of the backfield.

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