Instant analysis: Jalen Mills inks four-year deal with the Patriots

PHILADELPHIA, PA – JANUARY 05: Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Jalen Mills (31) celebrates during an NFC Wild Card game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Seattle Seahawks on January 5, 2020, at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Michael Workman/Icon Sportswire)

Hands up who saw that one coming! Former Eagles DB Jalen Mills is set to sign a four-year deal with the New England Patriots, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Mills was selected by the Eagles in the seventh round of the 2016 NFL Draft and has been a mainstay ever since. After being thrown into a CB2 role due to injuries across the secondary, ‘The Green Goblin’ learned to swim and would hold down the fort for years to come. He wasn’t the most consistent corner in the world and often struggled defending double-teams or any vertical route, but he played hard, set the tone, and became a vocal leader in the locker room.

Jalen Mills returned to the Eagles last year after his contract expired, signing a one-year deal with an agreement that he would move to a box safety role. Jim Schwartz watched Mills shine in this role against the Patriots (lol) and decided it made sense to move him there full-time.

The LSU product ended the year with an expected career-high in tackles and TFL, along with recording 5 QB hits. He went a long way in helping to negate the loss of Malcolm Jenkins.

With Jalen Mills now gone, the Eagles are likely going to have to invest in some kind of safety help. Rodney McLeod is coming off of a torn ACL and only has one year remaining on his contract. The remaining players at the position include 2020 rookies K’Von Wallace and Grayland Arnold. Wallace is the more intriguing of the two given that he was a fourth-round selection, but neither did enough to turn heads consistently in limited opportunities. Veteran help would not go amiss.

The Eagles have been linked with John Johnson formerly of the L.A Rams, who would be a great swiss army knife replacement. That will be a storyline worth watching as free agency nears.

Photo by Michael Workman/Icon Sportswire