Eagles’ Howie Roseman Opens Up About ‘Undervalued’ $37.75 Million Signing

The Philadelphia Eagles went against a longstanding organizational philosophy during free agency and emerged with one of the premier running backs available on the market.


Just a year removed from allowing homegrown back Miles Sanders to walk via free agency and a $25.4 million contract with the Carolina Panthers and following a season that featured D’Andre Swift playing out the final year of his rookie contract alongside Kenneth Gainwell, Boston Scott, and Rashaad Penny, the Eagles broke the bank by signing Saquon Barkley when free agency opened.

Barkley’s $37.75 million contract is a departure from how the Eagles typically allocate resources at running back and ran counter to how the rest of the league has viewed the position in recent years.

Eagles general manager Howie Roseman explained that the league’s market inefficiency combined with Barkley’s explosiveness and versatility as a runner and receiving option out of the backfield weighed heavily on the Eages’ decision to pounce on the former No. 2 overall draft pick.

“From our perspective, you get to a situation where you kind of try to find, is something being undervalued?” Philadelphia’s general manager Howie Roseman told Adam Schein last week on Mad Dog Sports Radio. “Is there a way to zig when everyone’s zagging? Or I don’t know if it’s the opposite, and you’re freakin’ zagging when zigging. But I think that it’s hard to find difference-making players and people, and it’s hard to find them for a cost. Those guys, they go for a lot of money, and we felt like there was an opportunity to get one of those guys in Saquon and bring him to the team.”

The Eagles couldn’t be set up any better for Barkley to succeed, given the depth along one of the NFL’s most dominant offensive lines and a scheme that emphasizes getting running backs involved in the passing game.

Are Eagles About to Get The Best of Saquon Barkley?

Barkley has never run behind an offensive line approaching the Eagles’ unit’s consistent dominance and still averaged 868 rushing yards and 5.8 rushing touchdowns per season with the New York Giants.

Two years removed from rushing for 1,312 yards with 10 touchdowns, Barkley is widely considered one of the premier running backs in the league.

“The [Eagles’] zone run game will be good for him,” an NFL offensive coach told Heavy. “Like he had last couple of years with the New York Giants. He will be more of a factor in the pass game and should be very productive.

“I think Saquon could be a huge piece for Philly, and add a dimension similar to Christian McCaffrey with the 49ers.”

Roseman and the Eagles hope that Barkley can play a starring role in Philadelphia making a resurgent run to a second Super Bowl in three seasons, and beyond.

“There’s risk in every decision you make, but we don’t think there’s any risk on the talent,” Roseman said. “We don’t think there’s any risk on the person. And we also feel like maybe — not that it wasn’t anywhere else — but we have a good situation here with us in Philly to kind of maximize him. I don’t think there’s anyone when he came out of the draft that didn’t think he wasn’t a Hall of Fame-caliber talent and person. He’s still young, and we’re really excited to have him.”

Howie Roseman, Eagles Praised for NFL Draft Haul

Roseman and the Eagles have recently developed a reputation as one of the best drafting organizations in the league, and that was bolstered in 2024.

NFL Media’s Bucky Brooks put together a list of his favorite draft classes, and the Eagles’ haul ranked near the top.

“Howie Roseman deserves a gold star on his draft-weekend homework,” Brooks writes of the Eagles’ class. “After assembling an enticing haul of prospects covering both sides of the ball. The defensive backfield, in particular, features a pair of five-star talents that I had rated as the top players at their respective positions. Quinyon Mitchell and Cooper DeJean are plug-and-play starters at cornerback and nickelback, respectively. The dynamic duo possess the technical diversity and positional flexibility to shadow elite pass catchers all over the field, while upgrading the toughness and tenacity of the Eagles’ secondary.”

Part of what allowed Roseman and the Eagles to focus on adding top talent and quality depth to several defensive positions was how aggressively the organization approached free agency this spring, including adding Barkley as a focal point of the offense.

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