Report: Eagles expected to make run at free-agent wideout Alshon Jeffery

Report: Eagles expected to make run at free-agent wideout Alshon Jeffery

DeSean Jackson. Pierre Garcon. Kenny Stills.

Now Alshon Jeffery officially has joined the rumor mill. 

According to CBSSports' Jason La Canfora, the Eagles are expected to make a run at the 26-year-old Jeffery, considered to be the prize free-agent receiver available. 

Take it for what it's worth — given the Eagles' well-documented need at wide receiver, they should at least kick the tires on any potential upgrade. 

Which the 6-foot-3 Jeffery certainly would be.

The 26-year-old, five-year veteran has two 1,000-yard receiving seasons and a 2013 Pro Bowl nod on his résumé. He's a vertical threat and viable red zone option.

But there are the question marks. He was suspended for four games last season for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances. He's had some problems with injuries, too, missing seven games in 2015 and eventually ending his season on injured reserve with a hamstring problem.

Bigger than all that, however, is whether the Eagles could afford him. Last season, he played under the franchise tag, worth $14.6 million. The Eagles still have issues with their salary cap, despite the $3.2 million freed up by releasing CB Leodis McKelvin. While there are expected to be more cap casualties and restructured contracts, Roseman still has a way to go to free up enough money.

A middle-tier free agent like Stills is more realistic. The Eagles almost certainly will target a receiver in the draft too (see options here)

Free agency begins March 9.

Eagles pick up compensatory fourth-round pick from Browns

Eagles pick up compensatory fourth-round pick from Browns

The NFL announced the list of compensatory picks for the 2017 draft and the Eagles weren't awarded any.

They're still going to get one, though. 

Thanks to the trade with the Browns to move up to No. 2 in last year's draft, the Eagles got back a conditional fifth-round pick that has now turned into a fourth. 

Basically, if the Browns received a fourth-round compensatory pick, the Eagles would get it. The Browns were awarded two (Nos. 139 and 142), so the Eagles get one. According to a league source, the Eagles will get No. 139 overall, the higher of the two.  

This is the first year teams are allowed to trade compensatory picks. The Bengals, Browns, Broncos and Chiefs were each awarded four compensatory picks. The highest compensatory pick awarded this year belongs to Miami at No. 97 in the third round. 

The Eagles still don't know where they'll pick in the first round -- either No. 14 or 15. That will be determined by a coin flip next week at the combine in Indianapolis. They have eight draft picks in total.

Eagles wise to bring Jason Peters back, even with full salary

Eagles wise to bring Jason Peters back, even with full salary

This isn't a big surprise, but Jason Peters will be back with the Eagles -- big salary and all -- for the 2017 season.

While the Eagles approached the veteran left tackle about his contract in January, Peters has not restructured his deal, according to a league source. 

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport on Thursday morning reported that Peters will be back next season on his normal contract. 

Yes, Peters is expensive in 2017. His base salary after hitting another Pro Bowl escalator written into his contract is up to $10.45 million for next season (plus a $250K workout bonus), which comes with a big cap hit of $11.7 million. That cap hit is the highest on the team, but not outlandish for a high-caliber left tackle. 

The Eagles could have very well cut Peters and moved on. It would have saved them significant cap space to use elsewhere. They just wouldn't have found any player more valuable to pay with that money. 

Peters, 35, is still their best option to protect Carson Wentz's blind side. He made his ninth Pro Bowl in 2016 after playing all 16 games. The team hasn't been shy about wanting him back and Peters toward the end of the season said he wanted to return for another year. 

"We certainly want to have him back," Eagles vice president of football operations Howie Roseman said of Peters in early January.

“I love him. I want him on the team,” head coach Doug Pederson said with two games remaining this past season. “I don’t want him to go anywhere."

With Peters back, it means Lane Johnson's eventual trip to left tackle will be held off for another year. Eventually, he'll take over that spot … just not right now. 

During the season, Peters opened up about his future, saying he hopes Wentz can be the guy who finally gets him a Super Bowl ring (see story).