Edge rusher Connor Barwin says he wants to play up to two more years in the NFL, but if he had a choice, he’d return to Philadelphia.
The 10-year veteran, who played for the Philadelphia Eagles from 2013-16, has been in contact with general manager Howie Roseman about a possible reunion.
“I’m trying to come back and play for the Eagles,” Barwin said, via Heavy.com. “I’m training right now and I’ve talked to Howie and they’re going to see if they need any depth on the edge and so I’m going to wait until camp starts before I sign anywhere else, but obviously I’m not going to wait too long. But the Eagles know that’s where I want to be.”
Barwin and his wife still live in Philadelphia, and they had their first child last year. Despite playing the last two seasons with the Los Angeles Rams and New York Giants, he’s stayed involved with the community with charity work.
Rumblings of a potential reunion reached a fever pitch two weeks ago, when Barwin posted a picture at Lincoln Financial Field to his Instagram story. That he was there to speak on a panel about environmental justice and sports only partially quelled the excitement.
Barwin is no longer in his 2014 Pro Bowl form, but he’s hoping to contribute as a key reserve. He only accumulated 12 tackles, four quarterback hits, and four pass defenses last season, but perhaps a switch back to defensive end would help.
The Eagles lost outside linebacker Jordan Hicks in free agency this offseason, but they re-signed defensive end Brandon Graham to a three-year, $40 million contract in May with $27 million guaranteed. Beyond that, they have other quality veterans in Derek Barnett and Vinny Curry.
“I’m going into my 11th year and I’m ready to just be a situational player,” Barwin said. “Howie knows. I’ll be there if one of the three guys get hurt or if something happens, or to mentor the younger guys. You know, Philly’s situation is BG, Vinny, and DB — three great guys on the edge — and I would come in to support those guys. If I don’t play in Philly, it would be the same situation somewhere else. Be the third edge guy.”
Barwin is making himself available if the Eagles want him. Given that he only made $2 million last season and $3.5 million the year before, he won't break the bank. The Eagles also have over $21 million in effective cap space — 12th most in the league — so the ball is in their court.
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