Ladies and gentlemen, they got him! The Philadelphia Eagles, as they somehow do seemingly in just about every offseason, have made waves by adding a cornerback late in the offseason process.
In 2017, they initiated a trade to land Ronald Darby. A season ago, they added Steven Nelson in July. On May 18th of 2022, Howie Roseman pulled yet another rabbit from the proverbial hat. Philadelphia has announced the signing of James Bradberry. His deal is for one year, ad it will pay him $10 million.
It isn’t quite time to plan any parades in February yet, but you have to be thrilled with the direction this team is going in. Here’s your bold prediction. At the close of the 2022-2023 NFL season, Philadelphia will send both of their outside cornerbacks to the Pro Bowl.
We didn’t stutter. This is not a knee-jerk reaction. There’s no need to restart your mobile devices or adjust your desktop or laptop monitors. This, most certainly, isn’t a drill.
The Eagles starting cornerback tandem is one no quarterback or offensive coordinator wants to see.
Of course, we had to look at the numbers. How could we not?
Over the course of the past six seasons (Slay’s fourth in the NFL/Bradberry’s rookie season in 2016), Philly’s new starting tandem leads all NFL cornerbacks with 84 and 82 pass breakups respectively. They’ve also combined for 684 total tackles, 34 interceptions, and five forced fumbles over that same span.
You can kind of see where this is headed right? Can you imagine the options this unit would have on defense if Slay or Bradberry draws man-to-man duty on the opposing offense’s second-best wideout? Seriously, if you’re a young Trevor Lawrence or Davis Mills, who do you take your chances throwing at?
Heck, this poses a serious threat to experienced signal-callers like Carson Wentz and/or Matt Ryan. How does one go about ‘picking their poison’ so to speak? You can’t pick on either guy!
Once upon a time, the 2020 offseason to be exact, Philly, as always, was in need of help at the cornerback position. James Bradberry and Byron Jones were the belles of free agency’s ball. The Eagles didn’t land either guy.
Now, there’s no reason to cry over spilled milk. Missing out on both led to a chain reaction that ended with the trade for Big Play Slay, but things seem to have worked out as they should have. Darius and James Bradberry are teammates now.
Dare we say it? Indeed, we shall. This combo gives the Birds their best tandem at cornerback since Bobby Taylor and Troy Vincent. Welcome to the Philly James!
Call it a bold prediction. Call it whatever you want, but we see no reason why both Bradberry and Slay can’t both wind up on the Pro Bowl roster at the close of the 2022-2023 season.