Eagles Insider

Which Eagles in their 30s are gone after this year?

Eagles Insider

Unless things change for the Eagles very quickly, there’s going to be a mass exodus this offseason of aging, underachieving, overpaid players.

  And the Eagles have quite a few of them.

  The Eagles have 13 players on the roster who are in their 30s – or will be by opening day next year. Most of them are carrying enormous contracts and sizable cap figures and many of them are seemingly on the down-side of their career.

  Aging, underachieving, over-paid.

  Not the kind of players you want to build with coming off a miserable season.

  So let’s take a look at those 13 players and whether or not they’re likely to be here in 2021.

  Brandon Brooks

Signed through 2024

Turns 32 on Aug. 19

Brooks is a perennial Pro Bowler when he’s healthy, and there’s no reason to think he doesn’t fit into the Eagles’ plans moving forward, but if for any reason they want to move on, they could anytime after the 2021 season with increasingly large cap savings. But what they really need is for Brooks to play a full healthy season, something he hasn’t done since 2017.

PREDICTION: Here  

Fletcher Cox

Signed through 2022

Turns 30 on Dec. 13

Cox has been good but not great this year, and with an $18.115 million cap figure – 3rd-highest among all NFL defensive tackles – and cap figures of $23.88 million next year and $23.78 million in 2022 he’s a bit overpaid. But he’s a five-time Pro Bowler and still one of the top 10 interior linemen in the NFL. He’s not going anywhere. Especially with the mountains of dead money he’d cost the Eagles even if they wanted to move on.

 

PREDICTION: Here  

Vinny Curry 

Signed through 2020

Turns 33 on June 30

Curry’s been a loyal Eagle and is still a fairly productive rotational defensive end. But it’s hard to imagine he’ll be back for a ninth season with the Eagles, even with another budget contract. Then again, we said the same thing last year. 

PREDICTION: Gone   

Zach Ertz

Signed through 2021

Turns 31 on Nov. 10

This is one of the more interesting ones. Contract talks between Ertz and the Eagles turned acrimonious before the season began, and since then Ertz had a terrible start to the season then missed a month with an injury. He’s already turned down a deal worth about $10 million per year, but considering everything I doubt the Eagles would even still make that offer. Dallas Goedert is capable of being a TE1, Ertz definitely has trade value, neither side seems happy with the other. I’m at the point where I don’t expect him back next year unless he has a huge last six games and proves he’s still the Pro Bowl-caliber tight end he’s been the last several years.

PREDICTION: Gone  

Brandon Graham

Signed through 2021

Turns 33 on April 3

B.G. is having a fine season in his 11th year with the Eagles. He’s got a hefty $17.928 million cap number next year, which is high for a 33-year-old. If he keeps producing like he did the first half of the season, all is well. At some point, Graham will slow down, but he hasn’t shown any sign of it yet. For the record, the Eagles could release him after this season - his 2021 cap hit is about the same as his potential dead money - but he’s their best pass rusher, and he’s not going anywhere.   

PREDICTION: Here  

DeSean Jackson

Signed through 2021

Turns 34 on Dec. 1

D-Jack has done basically nothing since Week 2 of last year. He’s due $8.2 million in base next year with $5.802 million in dead money if the Eagles release him. And considering the young WRs the Eagles have under contract, it’s hard to imagine Jackson returning next year for a 14th NFL season. 

PREDICTION: Gone

  Malik Jackson

Signed through 2021

Turns 31 on Jan. 11

The Eagles are tied to Fletcher Cox and Javon Hargrave, and factor in Jackson and that’s a ton of money – most in the NFL – at defensive tackle. Jackson’s dead money as a post-June 1 cut this offseason would be manageable and save $10 million in cap space in 2021, although the Eagles would pay the price with about $9 million in dead money in 2022.  

 

PREDICTION: Gone  

Alshon Jeffery

Signed through: 2021

Turns 31 on Feb. 14

The Eagles can finally escape from under Jeffery’s monstrous and disastrous contract by cutting him this offseason. They would inherit over $10 million in dead money but save nearly $8 million in cap space.   

PREDICTION: Gone  

Lane Johnson 

Signed through 2025

Turns 31 on May 8

Next year is actually the first year of new money in the contract extension Johnson signed a year ago this week. When healthy, he’s still one of the top right tackles in the league, but he’s got to find a way to get healthy and stay healthy. Contractually, he’s not going anywhere until after the 2023 season at the earliest.  

PREDICTION: Here  

Jason Kelce

Signed through 2021

Turns 34 on Nov. 5

The big question with Kelce is whether he wants to keep playing. Next season would be his 11th, and his $5.5 million cap figure and $8.4 million cap hit are manageable. He’s one of the few veteran Eagles who’ll make his own decision about when his Eagles career is over.  

PREDICTION: Here  

Rodney McLeod

Signed through 2021  

      Turns 31 on June 23

Another interesting one. McLeod has had a nice run here, but there’s a sense the Eagles need to get younger and faster at safety. Whether that means they move on from McLeod after this season remains to be seen, but they can do it with minimal cap damage, although the fact that his entire 2021 base salary is guaranteed could buy him one more year. I think it’s close to 50-50, but I’ll give him another year.  

PREDICTION: Here  

Jason Peters

Signed through 2020

Turns 39 on Jan. 22

See ya.

PREDICTION: Gone  

Darius Slay

Signed through 2023

Turns 30 Jan. 1

The new money (and big money) in Slay’s deal doesn’t even kick in until next year, but the Eagles do have an out after 2021. If they don’t think things are going well with Slay, they can cut him and erase his $19.75 million 2022 cap hit from the books for only $6.5 million in dead money.  

PREDICTION: Here