This isn’t the first time the Eagles have shown interest in the former James Madison product. They previously wanted to sign Moreland after he was waived by Washington in September 2021 but he was claimed by the Texans instead.
The Eagles were able to get him this time around after the 18 teams ahead of them in the waiver wire (which mirrors the NFL Draft order) opted not to put a claim in.
Moreland, who turns 27 in August, was originally a seventh-round pick at No. 227 overall in the 2019 NFL Draft. He made 10 starts in 30 total games with Washington, logging 88 tackles, five passes defense, one interception, and one forced fumble. Moreland saw very limited playing time with a pretty bad Houston team last year with just eight defensive snaps and 38 special teams snaps.
Funny enough, Moreland’s sole career pick came when he intercepted Carson Wentz in Week 1 of the 2020 season. Remember how Wentz got off to a real hot start in that game and then spiraled out of control in a loss? And then how he never really recovered from that? Yeah, well, Moreland played a part in that.
It seemed like Moreland had showed some promise in Washington. After allowing a 95.2 passer rating as a rookie, he improved to a 74.1 mark in 2020. His missed tackle rate also showed slight improvement, though it was still bad. Moreland’s small stature is clearly an issue in that regard.
That being said, Moreland is absolutely worth taking a chance on. He’ll be able to compete with Josiah Scott (among others) for a backup nickel cornerback spot behind Avonte Maddox.
For what it’s worth, our enemies over at Hogs Haven recently made the case for the Commanders to bring Moreland back to Maryland. He was a bit of a fan favorite there.
Scouting report via NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein:
Undersized outside corner by trade who will move inside due to a lack of desired NFL size. Moreland is a ball-hawking playmaker who saw six of his 18 career interceptions turn into touchdowns. He’s tenacious and physical from press with the fluidity and speed to hold up in trail technique but his off-man coverage needs work. He’s thin and needs more functional mass and strength to play the NFL game, but his ball skills and toughness give him a shot at eventually finding NFL playing time as a press-happy nickel.
With pick 227 in the 2019 NFL Draft, the #Redskins select Jimmy Moreland, CB, James Madison.
— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) April 27, 2019
Moreland is like the eleventy billionth corner on the Eagles’ roster now, by the way. Behind the obvious starting trio of Darius Slay, James Bradberry, and Maddox, they have … (as I try to remember this off the top of my head) … Zech McPhearson, Tay Gowan, Kary Vincent Jr., Mac McCain Andre Chachere, Josiah Scott, Josh Blackwell, Mario Goodson, and Josh Jobe. Oh, and now that I actually looked at the roster to confirm, they also have Craig James. So many corners! And so little safeties. Will the Eagles move any of those guys to the back end of the defense?
In a corresponding roster move to make space for Moreland, the Eagles released Joe Ostman with a failed physical designation. Smokin’ Joe is gone after originally joining the team as a 2018 UDFA signing.