Philadelphia Eagles sign CB Byron Maxwell

Byron Maxwell was at the top of my list of guys I expected to get overpaid this off-season and sure enough he was overpaid, as this deal is worth 63 million over 6 seasons, with 25 million over the first 2 years guaranteed. Maxwell was a 6th round pick in 2011, played 152 snaps in his first 2 seasons combined, and then broke into the starting lineup in 2013. He flashed top cornerback ability in limited action in 2013, grading out as Pro Football Focus’ 16th ranked cornerback on 494 snaps with 5 starts. No one played fewer snaps and graded out better among cornerbacks in 2013. However, Maxwell has never shown that kind of ability over a full season, grading out about average overall in 2014 as a 13-game starter (he missed 3 games with injury) opposite Richard Sherman. He was Pro Football Focus’ 45th ranked cornerback in 2014 and allowed 63.4% completion.

Things aren’t going to get easier for him now that he’s away from Seattle’s scheme, coaching, and supporting cast. The Seahawks barely made an effort to retain him this off-season, which should have been a red flag. The Eagles had a ton of cap space and a huge need at cornerback and I like the moves they made this off-season to free up cap space, but if they’re going to spend it like this, they’re not really going to help themselves. Considering Kareem Jackson got 8.5 million annually and Brandon Flowers got 9 million annually, it’s absurd that Maxwell got 10.5 million annually. Jackson and Flowers are both better players than Maxwell is. This is going to look like the worst overpay of the off-season when we look back at it.

Grade: F

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