Grading The Deal: Eagles re-sign Nigel Bradham to a five-year deal

March 15, 2018 GMT

Another day, another defensive signing for the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles.

The team announced on Wednesday that they re-signed linebacker Nigel Bradham to a five-year deal. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that Bradham’s new deal is worth $40 million.

This move, along with the other signings cannot be made official until later today at 4 p.m.

It was imperative that the Eagles brought back Bradham as he’s been their most consistent linebacker over the last two seasons.

This past season, Bradham played a much larger role in Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz’s scheme with middle linebacker Jordan Hicks suffering another season-ending injury. The 28-year-old linebacker racked up 88 total tackles, eight pass deflections, a sack and played 89.5 percent of defensive snaps.

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When Hicks went down, second-year linebacker Joe Walker replaced him, but was a liability in pass coverage. Then Walker suffered an injury in the middle of the season, which led the team to sign veteran Danelle Ellerbe.

However, Bradham along with Mychal Kendricks remained a constant at linebacker. Kendricks did a great job in stopping the run defense, while Bradham held his own against opposing teams’ tight ends and running backs in the passing game.

Speaking of Kendricks, the Eagles may have to move him to accommodate this pending signing of Bradham. According to NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport, the Eagles are expected to shop Kendricks, who has a $7.6 million cap hit and is scheduled to make $5.85 million in 2018.

If the Eagles do end up trading Kendricks when the new league year opens up, they already have his replacement. On Tuesday, ESPN’s Josina Anderson reported that former Denver Broncos linebacker Corey Nelson intends to sign a one-year deal with the team.

Nelson primarily played inside linebacker with the Broncos and is a special teams maven, which the Eagles definitely envy in their linebackers.

With all these moving parts involving the Eagles’ linebacker unit, re-signing Bradham was the team’s number one priority and they got it done.

Grade for the Eagles: A

In terms of this deal for Bradham, it was a great fit for him as he gets to stay with Schwartz, who knows how to best use his talents.

Aforementioned, he is set to make $40 million over five seasons, giving him an annual salary of $8 million per year. As of right now, he is setting the market value for other free agent outside linebackers.

When Hicks went down this season, Schwartz went to a two linebacker and five defensive back set. This defensive switch put an immense amount of pressure on Bradham to make plays in the open field.

He did not falter to the pressure and rose to the occasion, which helped the Eagles win Super Bowl LII.

It’s good to see that the Eagles are finally valuing the linebacker position because versatile players such as Bradham, do not stick around for long.

Grade for Bradham: A