Just after the 2016 season ended, Eagles vice president of football operations Howie Roseman talked about Band-Aids. He was talking about the corner position.
Nnamdi Asomugha, Cary Williams, Bradley Fletcher, Byron Maxwell, Leodis McKelvin. You get the idea.
The Eagles have tried several times to sign a free-agent cornerback to solidify their secondary and it hasn’t worked. This past season, the trio of Nolan Carroll, Jalen Mills and McKelvin finished out the season after Ron Brooks was placed on IR.
Brooks is still recovering, McKelvin has been cut, Carroll is set to become a free agent, and Mills will enter his second NFL season in 2017. The Eagles need help at cornerback and they need it bad. The good news is that this is a great and deep draft at the cornerback position. But there are also options in free agency if the past doesn’t scare the Eagles out of it.
We know the Eagles will be players in the wide receiver market. They've been linked to just about everyone with hands.
But here’s a look at 10 corners who will hit the market:
The 27-year-old Alabama product is going to be one of the top corners on the free-agent market this offseason after a three-interception season with the Bengals in 2016. At 6-2, he has great size for a corner and could be someone the Eagles would be able to build around.
Gilmore, 26, has a connection to the Eagles because he played for Jim Schwartz in Buffalo in 2014. Now, that connection didn’t work out with McKelvin, but Gilmore is a better player. He’s physical, which Schwartz likes, but Gilmore could get the biggest payday of the bunch.
The Texans signed Bouye as an undrafted free agent out of UCF in 2013, but he didn’t become a star until this past season. He’s going to go from virtual unknown to a highly-paid top CB.
Webster might be a case where the Eagles can find value for a guy who has been stuck behind some talented players in Denver. The Broncos already have a ton of money invested in their secondary.
The former first-rounder from the University of Houston would be somewhat of a reclamation project. He’s super fast and wouldn’t be expensive. But signing him wouldn’t fix the Eagles' problems.
The 27-year-old cornerback had four interceptions for the Cardinals last season in his best year yet. He hasn't been getting as much love as the others on this list, but he has upside.
After his time in New York, Amukamara played 2016 on a one-year deal with the Jaguars and didn’t have an interception, but he wasn’t bad.
Shields is a good player when he’s healthy, but that’s the big question. He missed most of the 2016 season with the Packers because of concussions and is now a free agent. He's only 29, but there’s a chance his career is over.
Ryan starred at Eastern High School in South Jersey long before he ended up with the Patriots as a third-rounder in 2013. He’s started 27 games over the last two years, with six interceptions.
Claiborne’s 2016 regular season with the Cowboys ended early with a groin injury he suffered against the Eagles. Before that injury, though, he was playing at a high level. He played last season on a one-year contract with the Cowboys but might be able to find a longer deal elsewhere.