Use Free Agency To Our Advantage
So what is our salary cap situation? Well the good news is that the Philadelphia Eagles are projected to have $21,709,000 + to spend on players next year. The wrinkile? They stand at the 20th spot with free cap space. That means 19 of the 32 NFL teams will enjoy more salary cap dollars to spend. Of the 53 players on the 2015 roster, the team will lose twelve players to free agency. The range of players hitting the open market runs from 25 (Restricted Free Agent Matt Tobin, offensive guard) to 28 . Do we chase to resign them with limited cap dollars? Do we fool ourselves into believing we can upgrade each loss by attrition by signing someone new who was let go elsewhere?
The NFL awards compensatory picks to teams that lose key players to free agency. Compensatory picks are awarded in rounds four through seven, cannot be traded, and are based on the net loss a team has in free agency, based upon the value of contract a player signs elsewhere. How long has it been since the Eagles were awarded compensatory picks? The last compensatory pick the Eagles received occurred in 2013 with a seventh round draft pick (the 239th pick).
So here’s how tanking works to our benefit. If we don’t chase free agents, and resign a minimal number of our own, we will surely have a net “loss” of free agents. Compensatory picks are awarded ONLY to teams who endure a net loss of talent via free agency. Perennial good teams do this regularly. The Seattle Seahawks do it, the Pittsburgh Steelers do it, the New England Patriots do it. The Philadelphia Eagles do not do it.
Next: Stop Kidding Ourselves