For now, we assume that Jalen Mills and Ronald Darby are the Eagles' starting cornerbacks and that Sidney Jones will be pushing for significant playing time.
So where does that leave Rasul Douglas?
When Darby went down in last year’s season opener against Washington with a dislocated ankle, Douglas was the next man up. Over the next nine games, he averaged 42 snaps and played well. But when Darby returned to the lineup, Douglas' game reps evaporated. The next five games, Douglas played a grand total of 16 defensive snaps, then closed out the regular season with 68 snaps in a meaningless finale against Dallas.
When the playoffs rolled around, Douglas’ snap count was zero. He spent part of the offseason reflecting on his roller-coaster rookie campaign and vowed to get better.
Now the OTAs are here and Douglas is constantly working on improving and turning the coaches' heads his way. He’s not thinking about being a backup; his mindset is he’s competing to start.
“I feel like every spot is open," Douglas said this week. "No matter what the position, you have to ensure the coaches that you can play and that you understand everything mentally. Physically, we’re all in the league for a reason. It’s all mentally — can you sustain a playbook? Can you be a guy we can depend on? Be the same person every day.”
While the job description says corner, he’s not limiting himself to just that role.
“I like myself as a corner, but I can play anything," Douglas said. "Safety, nickel, it doesn’t really matter.”
He hasn’t practiced at safety at all this spring and the only time he practiced at safety last year was when the team was in Los Angeles for a week preceding the Rams game. And that was on the scout team. All he’s trying to do is make himself more versatile, more valuable so that he’s hopefully on the field more than on the bench.