The move saved Minnesota nearly $9 million in cap space going into the 2023 NFL season. As a result, the Vikings will hand the reigns over to 2019 third-round pick Alexander Mattison. While the Miami Dolphins, New York Jets, and the Denver Broncos are the teams linked closest to Cook’s services, there are no shortage of potential landing spots for one of the NFL’s top running backs. This includes the Eagles, who have a burning desire to get back to the Super Bowl and finish what they started. So, should the Eagles sign Cook?
Should The Eagles Sign Dalvin Cook?
In short, yes. The Eagles should sign Cook.
Cook has been one of the best running backs in the NFL since he entered the league in 2017. In six seasons in Minnesota, Cook has played in 73 of a possible 97 games. He has rushed for 5,993 yards and 47 touchdowns on 1,282 carries (4.7 YPC). Cook is also a receiving threat out of the backfield, adding 221 receptions for 1,794 yards and five scores.
The Eagles bolstered their running back room this off-season. They added two backs in the form of D’Andre Swift and Rashaad Penny. Despite adding these backs, there are still questions about the room. The biggest is whether the newly-acquired players remain healthy through a 17-game season and the playoffs. Cook would continue to add depth to the room and instantly be the best running back on the roster.
Despite having one of the most stacked rosters in all of the NFL. The Eagles have enough cap space to sign Cook. Philadelphia is currently sitting right in the middle of the pack with $12.7 million in cap space, per Spotrac. The Eagles are in win-now mode and want to make another run at the Super Bowl. Adding Cook would only continue to add to one of the best offenses in all of the NFL.
Was Dalvin Cook a top three back in the 2017 NFL Draft? pic.twitter.com/iR4p5bxrhH
— FF Mike Kash (@FFMikeKash) June 13, 2023
The Practical Difficulties
This off-season has come with high praise for the Eagles and General Manager Howie Roseman. A great deal of that praise has come from their handling of the running back position. The Eagles let Pro Bowl running back Miles Sanders go to the Carolina Panthers in free agency. Sanders signed a four-year, $25 million deal with $13 million of that being guaranteed money. Sanders’ average annual salary is $6,350,000.
Roseman then pulled off a brilliant trade during the 2023 NFL Draft, landing running back D’Andre Swift from the Detroit Lions for a 2025 fourth-round pick and a seventh-round pick swap. Swift only has one year left on his current contract worth $1,774,397.
The Eagles already have exciting young back Kenneth Gainwell and the “Giant Killer” Boston Scott on their roster for the 2023 season. The four-man running back rotation of Penny, Swift, Scott, and Gainwell will cost a little more than $6 million for the year. The Eagles will be paying four players roughly the same price the Panthers are paying Sanders this season.
All this is to say that the Eagles do not prioritize paying the running back position. They prefer value. Cook’s contract demands are likely to scare away the Eagles from attempting to sign him. According to Tom Pelissero of NFL Network, Cook is not looking for a team-friendly deal. Teams offering a “$4-5 million contract” won’t be putting enough on the table. The four-time Pro Bowl selection is seeking a “significant contract” to sign.
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