The Eagles had to deal with a protracted contract disagreement with DeSean Jackson last season and they now have another key offensive player entering the final year of his deal.
LeSean McCoy is set to make $600,000 this season, the last year of his rookie contract. He’s obviously outperformed that contract in his first three seasons with Philly, but, as with Jackson, coming to terms on a long-term deal won’t be easy. Paul Domowitch of the Philadelphia Daily News reports that the team has offered him a deal worth about $6 million a year, a good deal less than Arian Foster got from Houston, but McCoy hasn’t bitten.
As Florio pointed out earlier this week, running backs aren’t drawing big contracts as free agents these days and the fact that the Eagles can franchise McCoy after next season gives them a lot of leverage. Even if McCoy puts up another huge season, the Eagles would likely be happy to franchise him, the tag would likely be somewhere in the neighborhood of $8.4 million next year, and take their chances rather than break the bank for a longer deal at a position fraught with examples of how quickly things can go downhill.
This offseason has provided a roadmap for an eventual deal. The two biggest running back deals this year landed $20.75 million and $17 million in guaranteed money for Foster and Marshawn Lynch, respectively, but McCoy is younger than both of them and he’s been more productive than Lynch. Still, if both sides want to get something done before McCoy hits free agency they give a blueprint of what one might look like. It would help even more if Matt Forte and Ray Rice got long-term deals, but nothing much is brewing on those fronts.
There’s no sign that McCoy will hold out this summer, but there will likely be more discussion once we get past free agency and the draft. As of now, it doesn’t look like things will be taken care of quickly.