Pederson on Sidney Jones: “He’s Definitely Going to be in the Mix”
Eagles CB Sidney Jones stood on the sidelines and watched virtually the entire season. But this year, his time standing on the sideline might be limited to when the Eagles offense is on the field.
“Now that he's had a full off-season now with [defensive backs] coach [Cory] Undlin and [Defensive Coordinator Jim] Schwartz’s defense, he's definitely going to be in the mix,” Eagles head coach Doug Pederson said on Tuesday.
Jones, 22, got that opportunity to play in the Eagles season finale against the Dallas Cowboys, after he suffered a torn Achilles at his Pro Day. Training camp is still two months away so the Eagles depth chart is far from set, but it looks like Jones, a first-round talent, could be in the mix for the No. 2 cornerback spot opposite Ronald Darby.
"What he did towards the end of last season and had a chance to get in that last game there with Dallas really, I think, boosted his confidence going into this off-season,” Pederson explained.
When asked if Jones would be ready to be a starting caliber player at this point, Pederson didn't hesitate.
“Well, I think definitely in the mix.”
So who is he in the mix with?
Along with Darby, the Eagles return 2016 seventh-round draft Jalen Mills, 2017 second-rounder Rasul Douglas and rookie fourth-round pick Avonte Maddux as the main candidates, for playing time.
“We've got some young talented guys that we need to find out," Pederson said. "We need to get some answers on players and this is the time to do that.”
Jones was thought to be a first-round pick and was injured during his pro day, causing him to fall into the second-round when the Eagles were more then happy to snag him, adding to a very young and competitive group of cornerbacks.
"I'm excited going forward these next few weeks to see some of our younger players. Guys that were on our practice squad a year ago. Guys that were maybe role or situational players a year ago to our draft picks, to our undrafted free agents, to the new free agents on our team. I'm excited to watch them practice.”