The Eagles have been bitten by the injury bug after a grueling game against Washington and as a result, it’s likely that Jaylen Watkins is out for the rest of the season with a torn finger tendon. However, the birds have been quick to bring in a replacement.
According to numerous sources, the Eagles are signing former Jaguars and Rams cornerback, Dwayne Gratz. The 5’11 corner will be signing a two-year deal in Philadelphia, per ESPN’s Adam Caplan.
#Eagles are expected to sign CB Dwayne Gratz to their 53-man roster, per source. Was last with the Rams.
— Jeff McLane (@Jeff_McLane) December 12, 2016
Dwayne Gratz will be signing a 2-year deal with #Eagles.
— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) December 12, 2016
Gratz was a third round pick back in 2013 and started 25 times for the Jaguars. The Rams most recently claimed him off waivers during October, but he only played in three games as a predominant special-teamer.
The 26-year old fell down the depth chart rapidly in Jacksonville and at the time of being released by the Jags, was simply a backup corner. During his time there, he racked up 119 tackles, 13 passes Defensed and two forced fumbles.
The reason for his slipping was his lack of playmaking. Against the Chargers, there was a scenario where Gratz was the only player on Defense playing in man-coverage during a zone play..which resulted in a 44-yard touchdown.
Prior to being waived by the Jags, Gratz was used heavily in nickel formations, which coincidentally is the role that Malcolm Jenkins and Jaylen Watkins have been flexing in and out of in recent weeks.
It’s also important to note that the Eagles have both Aaron Grymes and C.J Smith waiting for their first NFL opportunity..and if the injury bug does bite, two preseason heroes could finally earn their shot at the big time.
Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports