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April 20, 2020

NFL Rumors: Jaguars shopping RB Leonard Fournette, should Eagles call?

The Eagles have spent most of their offseason thus far addressing the defensive side of the ball. And with eight picks in the draft later this week, it is expected they look to lend Carson Wentz a little more help by taking at least one wide receiver.

The Birds' decision to stand pat thus far on offense, particularly at running back and wide receiver, kind of speaks volumes. It implies that they really were unimpressed with the available options and are comfortable rolling the dice with rookies, or with later free agency plays which can provide much more value.

There is a value play reportedly available as we approach the NFL Draft, at a position the Eagles are very much looking for help at.

The Eagles' have three running backs right now: last year's breakout rookie Miles Sanders and undrafted free agents Boston Scott and Elijah Holyfield. You have to think the team will add some help for Sanders in the backfield.

As a matter of form, most teams that have a speedy, shifty back like Sanders also like to have a power back who can run for short yardage and downhill. Last year, the Eagles had that in Jordan Howard. Howard, however, signed with the Dolphins a few weeks ago, leaving the role open for a new player.

Fournette, 25, fits the profile, and could perhaps benefit from being in a tandem instead of being called upon as the featured back like he was in Jacksonville. Fournette averaged around 22 touches per game, and perhaps as a result, missed 12 games over three NFL seasons. The Jags are clearly ready to move on, which makes it a buyers market.

If Fournette is bound to be cut anyway, the Eagles may be willing to part with a late round pick, or even a future pick to acquire the still young 230-pound back. 

He is certainly an interesting option compared to others still available on the market like DeVonta Freeman, Carlos Hyde or Lamar Miller, who would likely seek a higher salary and have a lot more on the odometer than Fournette. He is slated to earn $4.2 million on the last year of his rookie deal. The Jaguars have until May 4 to exercise Fournette's fifth year option, which would give the team acquiring him an added bonus year of control.

It could be a Howie Roseman-like acquisition. It will be interesting to see if they have any kind of interest in the former first-round pick.

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