The Eagles offered to trade wide receiver Alshon Jeffery in discussions with other NFL teams before Saturday’s 53-man roster deadline, two independent NFL sources said.
Jeffery has essentially been on the market since early last season. But if the Eagles had trouble moving the 30-year-old receiver then — before controversy and injury lowered his stock — it’s unlikely they’ll get many offers now.
Surprisingly, Jeffery made the Eagles’ 53-man roster when it was announced at 4 p.m. He was expected to remain on the physically unable to perform list and not be available to play until Week 7 at the earliest, but general manager Howie Roseman said that the Eagles expect him to be ready before then.
Roseman, without being asked directly about Jeffery’s availability in a trade, said that the Eagles weren’t “actively shopping” the receiver.
The biggest obstacle to dealing Jeffery, though, is his contract. He is slated to earn $9.91 million in base salary this season. The four-year, $52.25 million extension he signed in December 2017 hasn’t aged well. The Eagles might have released him this offseason had he not suffered a Lisfranc foot injury on Dec. 9.
Jeffery was placed on PUP before training camp and hasn’t practiced this summer. He has been in attendance and has occasionally caught passes without moving much. A recent report said that he had lost 10 to 15 pounds, was in great shape, and could possibly play this month.
» READ MORE: Predicting the Eagles’ 53-man roster | Jeff McLane
The Eagles seemingly have more depth at receiver this year, although it’s an inexperienced group. Aside from 33-year-old DeSean Jackson, who missed most of last season with a core-muscle injury, the receivers expected to make the roster have played in a combined 23 NFL games.
J.J. Arcega-Whiteside played in 16 games as a rookie last season and Greg Ward played in seven. Rookies Jalen Reagor, John Hightower, and Quez Watkins are expected to make the roster. Reagor, the Eagles’ first-round draft pick, suffered a shoulder injury last weekend and could miss the first several games of the season.
Jeffery hasn’t exactly lived up to expectations when the Eagles signed him as a free agent during the 2017 offseason. He was a valuable cog in the Super Bowl run that season, playing with a torn labrum, but he regressed the next two years.
Jeffery also became embroiled in controversy in October, when an Eagles sideline reporter claimed that the receiver was the source of anonymous comments to ESPN that criticized quarterback Carson Wentz and the offense. Jeffery has denied he was the source.
Eagles coach Doug Pederson has declined to give a timetable for Jeffery’s return. He was asked this week whether there was a chance Jeffery could play in September.
“There’s always a chance,” Pederson said. “I want to make sure he’s obviously 100 percent or 105 percent, if that’s such a thing, before we put him out there. He’s working extremely hard. He wants to practice and play in games. It’s a long season.”