Eagles Starter Named Surprise Cut Candidate After NFL Draft

With the Eagles making major additions in the secondary, the team could look to move on from veteran cornerback James Bradberry.
Jan 15, 2024; Tampa, Florida, USA; Philadelphia Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni
Jan 15, 2024; Tampa, Florida, USA; Philadelphia Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni / Kim Klement Neitzel-USA TODAY Sports

After seeing their secondary get torched last season, the Philadelphia Eagles made a concerted effort in free agency and the 2024 NFL Draft to add playmakers at cornerback and safety.

The Eagles brought back C.J. Gardner-Johnson in free agency, signing him to a three-year deal. And then in the NFL draft, Philadelphia used their first two picks on Quinyon Mitchell (No. 22 overall) and Cooper DeJean (No. 40 overall).

The additions of those two rookie defensive backs in last month’s draft could spell the end of James Bradberry’s tenure in the City of Brotherly Love. Ari Meirov of The33Team.com believes that Bradberry could be among the multiple veterans across the league who are the odd men out.

Here’s what Meirov said about Bradberry being a surprise cut, trade candidate:

"The Philadelphia Eagles made it clear they needed to improve the secondary in the draft, and they did, selecting Toledo’s Quinyon Mitchell in the first round and trading up for Iowa’s Cooper DeJean in the second round. James Bradberry was a disappointment last season, and it’s fair to wonder what his role will be if Mitchell and/or DeJean prove they deserve to be on the field right away alongside Darius Slay."

The 30-year-old cornerback had a horrible 2023 campaign with Philadelphia after getting a three-year, $38 million extension last offseason. Bradberry recorded 54 combined tackles, 13 pass deflections, an interception, and a fumble recovery.

However, Bradberry struggled immensely in pass coverage, which likely sounded the alarm for the Eagles to address the position in the NFL draft. 

The veteran defensive back recorded a 59.4 completion percentage allowed on targets, a 114.3 pass rating allowed when targeted (career-high), and gave up 11 receiving touchdowns (worst in his career).

Bradberry has a $15.1 million cap hit in 2024, so it won’t make him easy to trade. But if the Eagles were to cut him post-Jun. 1, the dead cap was $4.3 million with no cap savings ($0), per OverTheCap.

Nonetheless, it will be interesting to see what the Eagles do with Bradberry with training camp on the horizon as they drafted Mitchell with the intention of him starting year one.

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