The Eagles have tendered all their restricted free agents except tight end Alex Smith, as expected. They haven't reached agreement with fullback Leonard Weaver, who has been tendered at the second-round level; in recent days, the team seemed close to signing Weaver long term. The tender offer protects the Birds' rights but does not preclude still reaching an agreement with Harold Lewis, the agent for Weaver.
In fact, Lewis said tonight: "We are very close on a long-term extension. We are both going to sleep on a couple of things and pick it back up in the morning."
The levels of potential compensation vary, but the key thing is that in every case -- even with punter Sav Rocca, who would not glean any compensation for the Eagles if he went elsewhere -- all the Birds have to do to keep the player is match the competing offer.
Corner Ellis Hobbs was given a first-round tender, a mild surprise, for a player coming off a neck injury that could have been career-threatening. But proven corners are valuable and Hobbs also was the team's kickoff returner before he got hurt. Probably more to the point, he had to get 110 percent of his 2009 salary, even if tendered at the second-round level, and that would have pushed him past the first-round tender salary, $2.521 million for a four-year vet. So why not get a first-rounder if somebody else tries to sign him?
Weaver, wideout Jason Avant, guard/center Nick Cole and linebacker Akeem Jordan all were tendered at a second-round level. Only Weaver has much chance of garnering outside interest in a strong draft year. Linebacker Chris Gocong would net a third-rounder, guard Max Jean-Gilles a fourth, and linebacker Omar Gaither a fifth. Gocong, Jean-Gilles and Gaither were tendered at their original draft levels.
To read our earlier post about Hank Fraley, the Browns and more quarterback speculation, click here.