After three years, eight starts, countless injuries and plenty of lost opportunities, the Eagles have ended the Sidney Jones experiment.
To nobody's surprise, the Eagles plan to release their 2017 2nd-round pick by today's 4 p.m. roster deadline, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.
Jones, still only 24, is the eighth player the Eagles have drafted in the second round in the last 20 years who wound up starting 10 or fewer games in an Eagles uniform. Seven of the eight were on defense and the last three were defensive backs.
Jones was the 43rd pick in the 2017 draft despite blowing out his Achilles a month and a half earlier at the University of Washington’s pro day.
Before the injury, he was considered one of the top corners in the draft and a likely 1st-round pick. But he was only 21 and the Eagles figured even with a full year to get healthy, by 2018 they would have a 1st-round talent starting cornerback who was only 22 at a 2nd-round price.
It made sense at the time.
But Jones could never stay healthy. And when he was healthy his play was inconsistent at best.
Jones hurt his hamstring in his first career start, against the Giants in October of 2018 at the Meadowlands, and that began an endless cycle of injuries, rehab and more injuries.
"It's been a battle with my body," he said in October.
Jones never played more than five games in a row without getting hurt, and injuries and inconsistent play limited him to double-digit snaps in only 16 of a possible 51 games over the last three seasons.
He showed flashes of being the player the Eagles hoped for.
He had a huge 4th-down pass breakup of a Dak Prescott pass to Michael Gallup that clinched a crucial Eagles win last December and then a week later he essentially clinched the Eagles’ playoff bid with a late 4th-quarter interception of a Daniel Jones pass to Darius Slayton at the Eagles’ 6-yard-line.
That would up being one of the last snaps Jones would play as an Eagle.
Although he was healthy, he didn’t get a single rep on defense a week later in the playoff loss to Seattle.
His final numbers as an Eagle: 22 games played, eight starts, two interceptions, 10 pass breakups, 50 tackles and three tackles for loss.
Even this summer, Jones missed a week of practice with another lower-body injury. He returned last week but it was too little too late.
Jones was going into the final year of his rookie contract. He was due to earn $1.302285 the year and will count $651,380 in dead money against the Eagles’ 2020 cap for a cap savings of about $650,000.
Here’s a look at what the Eagles have gotten from eight of their 2nd-round picks over the last 20 years:
LB Quinton Caver : 0 starts
LB Matt McCoy : 10 starts
DE Victor Abiamiri : 6 starts
QB Kevin Kolb [2007: 7 starts
DT Trevor Laws : 2 starts
S Jaiquawn Jarrett : 2 starts
CB Eric Rowe : 5 starts
CB Sidney Jones : 8 starts
Here’s a look at the eight defensive backs they’ve drafted in the first three since the historic 2002 draft produced Lito Sheppard, Sheldon Brown and Michael Lewis:
CB Matt Ware [3rd round, 2004]
S Nate Allen [2nd round, 2010]
S Jaiquawn Jarrett [2nd round, 2011]
CB Curtis Marsh [3rd round, 2011]
CB Eric Rowe [2nd round, 2015]
CB Sidney Jones [2nd round, 2017]
CB Rasul Douglas [3rd round, 2017]