It looks like the offseason of change for the Eagles is continuing full steam ahead. “Multiple teams” have contacted Philadelphia to express interest in trading for tight end Zach Ertz, and a deal “could happen in the coming days,” sources told Mike Silver of NFL Network (Twitter link).
This isn’t exactly a shock, as we heard last month that the veteran was expecting to either be traded or released and not return to Philly in 2021. Ertz had previously said in January that he wanted to be back with the Eagles. Ertz had a very bumpy 2020 campaign that saw him get into a heated argument with GM Howie Roseman over his frustration with extension talks. Philadelphia reportedly considered trading him at the deadline, but an ankle injury he suffered around that time nixed that.
The team clearly didn’t want to pay him the top of the tight end market money he’s looking for, and in their minds they’ve got his replacement waiting in the wings in the younger Dallas Goedert. Ertz has one more season left on his current deal with an $8.25MM salary and $12.4MM cap hit. Trading or cutting him would save the Eagles almost $5MM in cap space, but also leave almost $8MM in dead money.
Ertz is 30 now and is coming off easily his worst season as a pro, but he made the Pro Bowl in 2019 and was a first-team All-Pro in 2018. As such, it’s not hard to see why there’s legit trade interest in him. His struggles this past season were likely due more to the Eagles’ passing game woes as a whole than anything he was doing wrong.
In 11 games, he finished with only 36 catches for 335 yards and one touchdown. In 2019 he had 88 catches for 916 yards and six touchdowns. It sounds like we should know a lot more about where he’ll be playing next season very soon.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.