Alrighty, Philly fans, now that we have all had a minute to digest the news of the Philadelphia Eagles trading tight end Zach Ertz, it is time for this franchise to look at some other members on this roster who should move off from. This time last year, the Eagles were considered sellers, but not much came about when the trade deadline came and went.
However, this year could and should be different. The Eagles are exactly in cap hell next year but aren't able to freely spend wherever. The Birds this year have a tick over 20 million in available space that they will be looking to carry over into 2022. This will provide a solid cushion but is still not ideal for a team trying to rebuild.
The Eagles need to take a serious look at this roster and start moving off of aging and expensive players. Many things can happen before the trade deadline, including nothing, but we will take a crack at who should be moved off from this team solely on merit.
Here is who we are thinking:
1. Derek Barnett, Defensive End.
This should not come as a shock to most. Barnett just never lived up to his first-round hype. He has had flashes of being an elite player, but those flashes were few and far between. The Eagles picked up Barnett's fifth-year option in 2021, but it would be wise for them to move on and get anything they can in return. If they pick up his option moving forward, they are looking at upwards of 8 million.
Highside would be a fourth-round pick, low-side would be a possible fifth. Teams will not be looking to trade significant assets for a player who more than likely will not be getting a contract from the Eagles.
2. Brandon Brooks, Right Guard.
Another non-shocking trade candidate. Brandon Brooks, who was regarded as the best guard in football at one time, has heavily fallen off the tracks. He is an elite player when he plays, but the injury bug has bitten Brooks and has bitten him hard over the past few seasons. He has been in and out of the lineup and, since 2019, can't seem to stay on the field.
This is a bit of a tricky one when evaluating because of two significant factors. One of them is Brook's ability to stay on the field, and the second is his hefty contract. The Eagles signed Brooks to a massive four-year, 56 million dollar contract extension back in 2019, which locked him up through 2024. The downside of this all is the majority of that contract has yet to be paid out to Brooks.
So that leaves the Birds with two options. The first option is not a good one, but it is the main play if you are trying to clear cap space. This option will involve Philly sending a pick along with Brooks to a team to take on his contract, which would be about 36 million dollars. The second is the Eagles will have to take on some dead money from his contract, and at best, would probably receive a fourth-round pick.
3. Fletcher Cox, Defensive Tackle.
Many fans sway back and forth on whether or not it is a good idea to trade Cox. The six-time Pro-Bowler is not precisely elite anymore but still is an excellent player. Cox would likely bring on the most value out of any Eagle on the roster. His contract would be more than manageable for another team to take on a restructure, especially since a majority of it has already been paid out.
For a team that is in a win now mode, the Eagles on the high-end should be able to secure a second-round pick for Cox's current level of play. On the low end, the Eagles would not take anything less than a third-round pick.
It is going to be a curious few weeks as we inch closer to the trade deadline. It will ultimately be interesting to see how general manager, Howie Roseman, handles it moving forward.