Eagles To Add S Terrell Edmunds

Terrell Edmunds will be staying in Pennsylvania, but the former first-round pick will not re-sign with the Steelers. Instead, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com reports the Eagles are adding the veteran safety (Twitter link). It is a one-year agreement.

After re-signing with the Steelers on a low-cost deal in 2022, Edmunds could be poised for a first-string run with the Eagles. He has started 75 career games. Edmunds’ agreement comes days after the Eagles signed safety Justin Evans.

The Eagles have re-signed a few of their many free agents on defense, bringing back Brandon Graham, Fletcher Cox and James Bradberry. Others (Javon Hargrave, Kyzir White, T.J. Edwards and safeties Marcus Epps and C.J. Gardner-Johnson) have left. Edmunds, 26, figures to be an affordable stopgap in the wake of Epps and Gardner-Johnson’s free agency defections.

It cost Pittsburgh just $2.5MM to retain Edmunds last year. Terrell Edmunds, who joins brother Tremaine Edmunds in leaving for an NFC destination this month, served as a five-year Steelers starter. Most of Terrell’s run came alongside Minkah Fitzpatrick. The Steelers have Fitzpatrick attached to a top-market safety deal, which surely limited their interest in spending much to replace Edmunds. Pittsburgh did bring back former starter Damontae Kazee in free agency, giving the veteran a two-year, $6MM deal. Given those terms, it was not difficult to predict Edmunds would need to relocate.

Although Gardner-Johnson joined Justin Simmons in intercepting an NFL-most six passes last season, Pro Football Focus graded Edmunds as a superior safety. PFF graded Edmunds as slightly better in coverage compared to CJGJ and has slotted the former as a top-40 safety twice in the past three seasons. Edmunds graded as the advanced metrics site’s 22nd-ranked safety in 2020.

The Eagles wanted to re-sign Gardner-Johnson and offered him a multiyear deal early in free agency. But the converted cornerback turned down the Birds’ proposal, aiming for more. It turned out, his market was not quite as strong as anticipated. The Lions ended up signing Gardner-Johnson to an incentive-laden deal that checked in at $6.5MM in base value.

Evans may have a chance to push for a starting spot, but it should be expected the Eagles add at least one more starter-caliber safety to the equation. After they waited until roster-cutdown day to do so last year, the team standing pat in the draft will not automatically mean Evans will be ticketed to return to a starting role after several seasons have passed since his last such opportunity. Edmunds, however, will be a better bet to be a Philly first-stringer in 2023.

View Comments (10)