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Training Camp Position Preview: Cornerback 

Quinyon Mitchell
Quinyon Mitchell

It was clear from the offseason that the Eagles wanted to add to the position. They used their first two picks in the 2024 NFL Draft on Quinyon Mitchell and Cooper DeJean, who jumped into a room featuring veterans like Darius Slay, Bradberry, and Avonte Maddox along with another group of young corners – notably Kelee Ringo, Eli Ricks, Mario Goodrich, and Mekhi Garner in their second seasons here.

Also added to the mix and one of the more intriguing players in this Training Camp is Isaiah Rodgers, who spent 2023 on the NFL's Suspended/Reserve List after violating the league's gambling policy while a member of the Indianapolis Colts. He had an impressive spring and looks to build on that in the summer.

Even more: Young veterans Josh Jobe, Zech McPhearson – coming back from an injury that sidelined him all of last season – and Tyler Hall, signed in free agency, add to an intense level of anticipated competition.

And who knows? A player who tried out for the team in the Rookie Camp, Shon Stephens, was signed after his career at Ferris State and he could find a way to the active roster or the practice squad. The Eagles have transformed their cornerback room over the last two offseasons and have been creative in adding talent. Now we will see the next step: Who wins jobs? This is no doubt a position to watch in Training Camp.

New to the Nest: Mitchell and DeJean are the headliners. They are two players the Eagles were really, really high on heading into the 2024 NFL Draft and they happened to be there for Executive Vice President/General Manager Howie Roseman in Rounds 1 and 2. They both have a lot to learn about playing the position at this level, of course, and that's why Slay has been so helpful to the young players – Stephens included – giving them guidance.

Bird Talk: "I'm here to learn as much as possible right now, whether that's inside or outside. I don't have a problem with having a lot on my plate. I'm here to play football and learn football, so the more positions I can learn, I feel like it helps me when I'm out on the field when I'm at one of those positions knowing what all of the positions are and what I'm supposed to be doing out on the field." – rookie defensive back Cooper DeJean

Notable Stat: Two that are worth mentioning here that highlight the strength of the cornerback position and the influx of young players on the rise: Darius Slay finished the 2023 season with 15 passes defended, the most in his four years with Philadelphia, and the Eagles had four cornerbacks make their NFL debuts last season – Garner, Goodrich, Ricks and Ringo. 

Under the Microscope: Is this position transitioning? Can the draft picks make an early impact? How does the nickel cornerback position shake out? Maddox has long been one of the best in the league, but injuries have hampered his playing time and effectiveness in the last couple of seasons. Hall has some credentials to compete there as well. And one of the best storylines to watch will be Rodgers, who is trying to come back after missing all of last season. He shook off the rust in the spring and will be a definite roster candidate this summer.

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