Eagles Rumors

Eagles Sign WR John Ross

John Ross took part in the Eagles’ rookie minicamp, and his performance has earned him an extended look. The veteran receiver signed with Philadelphia on Thursday, per a team announcement.

Ross retired last summer, but he attempted a comeback in November. Without having found playing time at the end of the 2023 campaign, he has not played a regular season game since 2021. The 28-year-old will attempt to carve out a roster spot with the Eagles as they sort out the back of their WR depth chart.

Philadelphia is set in terms of starting spots with A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith. Both wideouts signed lucrative new deals this offseason, and they will be counted on to remain the focal points of the team’s passing game in 2024 and beyond. The Eagles lost Quez Watkins and Olamide Zaccheaus in free agency, which required the addition of new secondary contributors.

One of those is Parris Campbellwho inked a one-year deal in March. The former Colt had an underwhelming single campaign with the Giants last year, and he will spend the offseason trying to lock down a role in the Eagles’ offense. The same was presumed to be true of DeVante Parker, but he announced his retirement earlier this week.

Ross will now attempt to take advantage of the opportunity created by Parker’s absence. The former is best remembered for his 4.22-second 40-yard dash at the 2017 Combine. That performance led to Ross hearing his name called ninth overall, but he struggled during his four-year tenure with the Bengals. The Washington product played a single season as a Giant after his rookie contract expired, but that effort likewise did not yield notable production. To little surprise, Ross has been unable to find a permanent home since.

This agreement will no doubt represent nothing more than a one-year flier on the part of the Eagles. If he performs during the summer and can remain healthy, Ross could provide the team with a deep threat at the receiver spot. If not, Philadelphia will again need to turn elsewhere for depth options ahead of the start of the season.

The Biggest Wide Receiver Contract In Each Team’s History

This offseason has brought changes to the wide receiver market, but a host of wideouts chosen early in the 2020 draft have taken center stage. Additional raises to the WR market’s ceiling are likely on tap, with the Vikings (Justin Jefferson) and Cowboys (CeeDee Lamb) employing a pass catcher due a monster raise.

Most NFL teams have authorized a big-ticket (by today’s standards) deal for a wide receiver. Ranked by guaranteed money and excluding rookie contracts and accords acquired via trade, here is the most lucrative WR deal in each franchise’s history.

Arizona Cardinals

Larry Fitzgerald‘s seven-year, $113MM extension (August 2011) holds the Cardinals standard for total value, but Hopkins’ pact checks in higher in terms of guarantees and AAV.

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

In total, Michael Crabtree‘s 2018 deal (worth $21MM) and Derrick Mason‘s 2005 agreement ($20MM) surpass Beckham’s. But the 2023 Baltimore rental’s guarantee came in higher.

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

The Browns have featured three higher-paid receivers on their roster since Landry’s contract, but both Odell Beckham Jr. and Amari Cooper arrived via trade and played on contracts designed by other teams. Jerry Jeudy‘s AAV ($17.5MM) on his 2024 extension also outpaces Landry’s, though the recent trade pickup’s total guarantee falls short here.

Dallas Cowboys

Denver Broncos

Courtland Sutton‘s 2021 extension carries a higher AAV ($15MM) but included $18.85MM guaranteed.

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Brandin Cooks‘ 2022 re-up held a higher AAV, while the Stefon Diggs trade brought a higher per-year salary as well.

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Las Vegas Raiders

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

JuJu Smith-Schuster‘s 2023 deal trails Agholor’s in AAV but carried the same full guarantee. Danny Amendola‘s full payout ($28.5MM) in 2013 tops both deals.

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

Allen Lazard‘s 2023 deal and Santonio Holmes‘ contract back in 2011 brought more in total value ($44MM and $45MM, respectively) but did not match Davis’ for guarantees.

Philadelphia Eagles

Pittsburgh Steelers

Antonio Brown‘s four-year, $68MM extension in 2017 also included a $19MM guarantee at signing but trailed Johnson’s in terms of total guarantees.

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Chris Godwin‘s 2022 deal beats Evans’ for at-signing guarantees ($40MM), while the all-time Bucs receiving leader’s 2024 agreement leads the way in AAV ($20.5MM).

Tennessee Titans

Washington Commanders

WR DeVante Parker Announces Retirement

MAY 22: The Eagles officially placed Parker on their reserve/retired list Wednesday. Barring a comeback attempt, Parker will wrap his career after seven seasons as a Dolphin, two as a Patriot and two months with the Eagles.

MAY 20: DeVante Parker is calling it a career. After signing with the Eagles earlier this offseason, the veteran wide receiver told ESPN’s Adam Schefter that he has decided to retire.

“I want to see my kids, spend quality time with them,” Parker said of his decision. “I want to be there for them whenever I can.”

The former first-round pick spent the first seven seasons of his career in Miami, including a 2019 campaign where he hauled in 72 catches for 1,202 yards and nine touchdowns. Parker ultimately finished his Dolphins career having collected 4,727 receiving yards and 24 touchdowns. While Parker didn’t necessarily live up to his first-round billing in Miami, he still left the organization ranked top-10 in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns.

“I also appreciate the Dolphins for drafting me and giving me the opportunity,” Parker told Schefter. “I always will have love for the Dolphins and their organization. And I want to thank all the teams, the Patriots and the Eagles, too. But the Dolphins were the first team, and I really want to thank them.”

Parker was traded to the Patriots ahead of the 2022 campaign and ultimately had two inconsistent seasons in New England. The Patriots’ QB uncertainty limited the wideout to only 933 yards in 26 games with the organization, including this past season where he finished with a career-low 394 receiving yards.

He was released by the Patriots in March and quickly caught on with the Eagles, where he was expected to compete for the third spot on the depth chart behind A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith. With Parker out of the picture, the job is now Parris Campbell‘s to lose. The veteran addition will be competing with the likes of rookie Ainias Smith (fifth round) and Johnny Wilson (sixth round) for reps.

Eagles Sign Second-Round CB Cooper DeJean

Entering Monday, the Eagles had only two unsigned members of their draft class. One of them – second-rounder Cooper DeJean – has now inked his rookie deal, per a team announcement.

DeJean was one of the more intriguing prospects in the 2024 class, one dominated at the top by offensive players. That was demonstrated by the historic run of quarterbacks, tackles and receivers to begin the opening round, but it still came as a surprise when DeJean did not hear his name called on Day 1. The Eagles traded up to select him at No. 40.

In doing so, they made another draft investment in the secondary. That unit struggled in 2023, and Philadelphia responded prior to the DeJean selection by adding Quinyon Mitchell as the first defensive back to hear his name called. The latter is positioned to see time alongside Darius Slay and James Bradberry as a perimeter corner, but the former’s NFL role is less clear.

DeJean played at corner during his time at Iowa, but he also had success when lining up as a safety. He was named the Big Ten’s top defensive back and returner last season, a sign of his skillset both on defense and special teams. A fractured leg ended the 6-1, 203-pounder’s college career prematurely, and it may have hindered his draft stock.

Nevertheless, DeJean will join the Eagles with expectations of being able to contribute in the third phase even if he does not land a starting job on defense right away. After ranking 31st in the league in passing yards allowed last year, the team has plenty of room for improvement in the secondary. New defensive coordinator Vic Fangio will spend the summer attempting to find DeJean’s ideal position during his rookie campaign.

Here is an updated look at the Eagles’ draft class:

Commanders Add Brandon Sosna As SVP Of Football Operations

MAY 20: Sosna’s title will be senior vice president of football operations, as first reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter. His duties will remain similar to the ones he held in Detroit, and as such he will be a lead figure in areas related to contract negotiations, salary cap management and the team’s analytics department.

MAY 19: The Commanders are adding a hot, young name to their front office to go along with a host of other new hires. To go along with relatively new ownership and a new coaching staff, new general manager Adam Peters is adding a strong piece to his front office staff in Brandon Sosna, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL Network.

Sosna, at 31 years old, is a fast-rising executive in the football world. A graduate of UPenn, Sosna began his front office work at the collegiate level with the Bearcats of Cincinnati. Starting at his hometown school in 2013, it took only three years for Sosna to be named chief of staff of the athletic department, a role in which he was responsible for organizing the search process that led to the hiring of head coach Luke Fickell.

Sosna broke into the NFL back in 2017 as a football administration intern with the Browns. It wasn’t long before he worked his way up to salary cap & contract analyst the following season. After dipping his toe in the NFL, Sosna was lured back to the University of Cincinnati in 2019, where he was granted the title of senior associate athletic director/chief revenue officer.

The USC Trojans poached Sosna later that year, hiring him as executive senior associate athletic director/chief of staff. In Los Angeles, Sosna was considered the athletic director’s right-hand man. Once again, he played a crucial role in the search that landed Lincoln Riley as the Trojans’ new head coach and reportedly played a key role in the school’s big move to the Big Ten Conference.

Most recently, though, the call of the NFL was too grand, and Sosna accepted a job as senior director, football administration for the Lions. Per Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, Sosna served as the point man in contract negotiations in Detroit. While his title in Washington has not yet been announced, his role will be “high-ranking” and will likely utilize his contract analyst talents.

Garafolo also reported that, whatever the job is, Sosna was not the only one to interview for the role. Eagles vice president of football administration Jake Rosenberg was also considered after the team allowed his contact to expire in Philadelphia so that he could pursue other opportunities. Rosenberg has been credited for his assistance in the Eagles’ unique strategy of utilizing void years on contracts to reduce current salary cap obligations, something the team has been regarded as ahead of the curve on for some time.

Tyler Steen Front-Runner For Eagles’ RG Job

In his first NFL training camp, 2023 third-rounder Tyler Steen was supposed to compete with 2022 second-rounder Cam Jurgens for the Eagles’ starting right guard post. But Steen, a collegiate tackle, had a difficult time adapting to the interior, and Jurgens quickly beat him out.

Ultimately, Steen appeared in just 71 offensive snaps last year, almost all of which came during his one and only start, a Week 9 victory over the Cowboys. Aside from that contest, for which both Jurgens and Sua Opeta were injured, Philadelphia typically called upon Opeta when it needed a reserve guard.

However, the Eagles allowed Opeta to depart in free agency this offseason, and a recent ESPN report confirms that Jurgens will move to center to replace retired franchise icon Jason Kelce (which was the plan when Jurgens was first drafted). That means that the RG job is again there for the taking, and the same ESPN report indicates that Steen is the front-runner.

In his admittedly small sample size of work in 2023, Steen did not receive high marks from Pro Football Focus, which assigned him a poor overall grade of 53.2 and a laughably low 21.9 pass-blocking mark (PFF also charged him with six pressures allowed). On the other hand, he held up reasonably well in the run game, and in the view of Jimmy Kempski of PhillyVoice.com, Steen — whose struggles in blocking Dallas superstar Micah Parsons are perhaps forgivable — showed enough promise to earn the pole position in the right guard race.

His top competition for the job could come in the form of free agent acquisition Matt Hennessy, whom the Eagles added on a one-year deal in March. Hennessy missed the entirety of the 2023 campaign due to a knee injury, and he appeared in just 175 snaps in 2022, all of which came as a left guard for the Falcons. However, he did acquit himself well during his LG cameo, and he was a highly-effective run blocker when working as Atlanta’s starting pivot in 2021. If nothing else, he will provide useful depth at center and the guard positions.

Day 3 rookies Trevor Keegan and Dylan McMahon could also push Steen for playing time at right guard.

NFC Front Office Notes: Eagles, Rosenberg, Falcons, Giants, Panthers, Bears

Jake Rosenberg‘s Eagles exit is now official. After a report earlier this offseason indicated Rosenberg would step down following a 12-year tenure with the team, the Eagles’ VP of football administration made the announcement (via PHLY.com’s Zach Berman). A friend of GM Howie Roseman‘s dating back to elementary school, Rosenberg assisted the Eagles on the salary cap front. The team has frequently been ahead of the curve in this area, as its 2024 offseason reinforced. It is not known where Rosenberg is headed, but this marks another key departure in the Eagles’ front office. Two years ago, four of Roseman’s lieutenants — Brandon Brown, Ian Cunningham, Catherine Raiche, Andy Weidl — left for assistant GM roles elsewhere. Another key piece will need to be replaced now.

Post-draft front office changes are common around the league. Here is the latest from the NFC:

  • Despite not being a Terry Fontenot hire, Tokunbo Abanikanda will rise to a key post in the Falcons‘ front office. The team is promoting the veteran scout to its college scouting director post, InsidetheLeague.com’s Neil Stratton tweets. Abanikanda has been with the Falcons since midway through Thomas Dimitroff‘s GM tenure, arriving in 2012. He will now take a pivotal role in the team’s draft preparation. Elsewhere in the Falcons’ front office, the team’s player personnel coordinator — Brian Zeches — is moving on, Stratton adds. Formerly an exec in Washington and Kansas City, Zeches was named to this post during the 2023 offseason.
  • In addition to adding Chris Snee to their scouting staff, the Giants are making multiple in-house promotions. They are bumping Nick La Testa to assistant director of pro scouting and naming Charles Tisch their football operations manager, The Athletic’s Dan Duggan tweets. Charles Tisch, who had been a football ops assistant, is the nephew of Giants co-owner Steve Tisch. With the Giants since 2017, La Testa had previously worked on the scouting level for the team.
  • A Carolina-to-Washington pipeline formed during Ron Rivera‘s NFC East stay, but the Commanders will now lose an exec to the Panthers. Carolina is hiring David Whittington for a college scouting role, according to Stratton. Whittington had been with Washington since 2009, holding several positions. Most recently, he worked as a national scout with the Commanders. The Panthers are also adding Eric Eager to their analytics department, per Stratton. Eager, a former Pro Football Focus staffer, worked most recently as the vice president of SumerSports, an analytics-based website that also employs Dimitroff presently.
  • The Bears are going through with a round of promotions as well. GM Ryan Poles is elevating Breck Ackley from assistant college scouting director to the director post, while Stratton notes national scout Francis St. Paul will become the assistant director. Area scouts Brendan Rehor and John Syty are also moving to national scouting roles.

NFL Draft Pick Signings: 5/15/24

Here are the NFL’s midweek draft pick signings:

Arizona Cardinals

Kansas City Chiefs

New York Giants

Philadelphia Eagles

San Francisco 49ers

Titans Add A.J. Highsmith, Keenan Agnew To Front Office; Team Interviewed Josh Scobey

May regularly brings change in teams’ scouting departments, as staffs are often kept intact ahead of the draft for continuity purposes. The Titans are one of the teams making changes shortly after the draft.

Second-year Titans GM Ran Carthon is hiring A.J. Highsmith as the team’s scouting director, according to InsidetheLeague.com’s Neil Stratton. This will mark a reunion for the two second-generation NFLers. Carthon and Highsmith worked together with the 49ers during the late 2010s.

The son of NFL personnel vet Alonzo Highsmith, A.J. spent the past five years with the Bills and finished that tenure as a national scout. A defensive back at Miami from 2009-13, A.J. Highsmith worked his way up from an area scouting post in Buffalo. Alonzo also reentered the NFL this offseason, moving back from a role with the Hurricanes to work under Eliot Wolf in the reshaped New England front office. A.J. Highsmith will hold both pro and college scouting duties in Tennessee, Stratton adds.

Staying on the subject of veteran execs’ sons, Keenan Agnew is also joining Carthon in Tennessee. The son of Lions assistant GM Ray Agnew, Keenan is coming aboard as a scouting assistant, Stratton adds. Keenan will become the second of Ray Agnew’s sons to land in an NFL front office; Ray Agnew III is part of Joe Douglas‘ Jets scouting staff.

The Titans have also spent some time with other candidates to join their scouting department. Josh Scobey, who separated from the Cardinals after 12 years recently, interviewed for a Titans position, according to veteran Titans reporter Paul Kuharsky. Scobey, a former NFL running back, finished his Arizona tenure as the team’s college scouting director. Scobey’s separation from the Cardinals comes in ex-Titans exec Monti Ossenfort‘s second offseason as GM.

Also part of the recent Titans interviews: Eagles pro scouting director Max Gruder, per Kuharsky. The Eagles promoted Gruder during the 2022 offseason. The Titans had most recently employed Jon Salge as their college scouting director and Brian Gardner as their pro scouting director. While it is unclear where that duo will stand going forward, Carthon’s second offseason in charge is bringing some changes beyond the coaching staff.

NFL Draft Pick Signings: 5/13/24

Front offices around the NFL continue to chip away at their draft pick signings. That was no exception today, as a number of teams inked players to rookie contracts:

Cincinnati Bengals

Indianapolis Colts

  • OT Matt Goncalves (third round, Pittsburgh)
  • C Tanor Bortolini (fourth round, Wisconsin)

Jacksonville Jaguars

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

  • EDGE Jalyx Hunt (third round, Houston Christian)
  • RB Will Shipley (fourth round, Clemson)
  • WR Ainias Smith (fourth round, Texas A&M)

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers