Eagles veteran LB Corey Nelson missed his chance to take over
After being handed a golden opportunity to start at linebacker, Corey Nelson has ultimately failed thus far.
The Philadelphia Eagles front office can’t be perfect all of the time. Of course, we continuously applaud Howie Roseman and Joe Douglas for the incredible job they have done over the last year, but it’s hard to hit on every single player acquisition. The funds were low for the Eagles, so there wasn’t exactly a massive splash made in free agency, unlike previous seasons. But Roseman crunched some numbers and worked with what he had and made some stellar moves on paper.
Not everything always translates perfectly when it comes to the performance factor for select players though. For instance, the Eagles are struggling to get the best efforts from a few new acquisitions from this past free agency period. And as of right now, the biggest disappointment has been former Denver Broncos linebacker, Corey Nelson.
When the Eagles signed Nelson back in the springtime, they made it very clear that he would get an opportunity to start. Well, it was quite apparent that the Eagles had every intention of dishing out Mychal Kendricks in hopes that Nelson could make them forget all about the ‘Angry Bird.’ Unfortunately, though, things haven’t gone as planned, and Nelson just might end up being the teams first surprising cut of the preseason.
What went wrong?
From the beginning, Nelson had some big shoes to fill if he planned on replacing Kendricks. While Nelson spent a majority of the 2017 season on the injured reserve, Kendricks wrapped up a Super Bowl season with an impressive 77 tackles. For whatever reason, Kendricks and Jim Schwartz just couldn’t figure things out, and for that, the Eagles relied on Nelson.
We’re not sure where things went wrong, but Nelson just never seemed to get it going since he started in OTAs. Ultimately, there was no competition for the WILL position before workouts had begun. Nelson pretty much had the position all to himself. But eventually, the positional battle turned into Nathan Gerry versus Kamu Grugier-Hill, not Nelson. And while Nelson found himself getting second-half reps in the preseason after falling behind, he has still done nothing to prove to the Eagles that he deserves to take up space on the final roster, despite playing against backups.
Is there really time for redemption? At this point, the Eagles have found a lot more value in their younger players who not only offer upside on the defense and special teams, but they are also cheaper and have longevity with their contracts, unlike Nelson who is on a one-year deal.
With only two tackles to show for in two games, Nelson could be gone any day now. According to Spotrac, the Eagles could save up to one million dollars in cap space by cutting Nelson. Seeing as though the Eagles aren’t too rich in space, they could use the extra cash for a potential signing that offers better value elsewhere. So, it’s not a matter of if Corey Nelson gets released, it’s a matter of when. That time could be coming sooner than later.