Boykin on the move, Eagles trade him to Steelers

The mini-exodus continues in Philadelphia, yesterday they traded cornerback Brandon Boykin to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Boykin was one of the few bright spots of an unimpressive Eagles defensive unit. Many expected Boykin to be moved when McCoy, Foles, Mathis and Jackson were jettisoned out of Philadelphia under Kelly’s reign. With the NFL draft over and the start of training camp arriving, it seemed as if he’d be staying. Obviously that wasn’t the case as he was moved for a fifth round pick in 2016, but if he plays a certain percentage of snaps (60%) than the pick can become a 2016 fourth round pick.

So let’s just say that the Eagles get a fourth round pick in this deal, the price still may have been too low for one of the top slot corners in the league. The Steelers have been trying to revamp their secondary after father time has taken away two of it’s long time playmakers in Ike Taylor and Troy Polomalu.

The Steelers will be getting someone that can fit in right away, as for why Boykin is no longer in Philadelphia. There are a few reports stating that he was voicing his desire to play on the boundary. He was quoted in June on the subject, “I think here they have certain requirements. I think we should be honest and call it what it is.” If that is the case, the Eagles better have someone on their roster that an pick up the slack in the slot. It’s been mentioned by CSN’s Geoff Mosher that in Philly’s defensive scheme, their safeties are capable of playing slot which would diminish Boykins snaps to a degree. So the move ideally works well for both, of course no football has been played so only then we will be able to tell if the Eagles will miss Boykin or not.

The 5’10 Boykin comes second to only Broncos Chris Harris in coverage in the slot over the past two seasons, yielding just  a 67.1 QB rating. In 139 targets in that time, Boykin gave up 85 catches for only two touchdowns. On the flip side, he picked off seven passes. The Steelers back end will surely get better upon his arrival, with the way offenses attack defenses. A good slot corner goes a long way, a very long way. Pittsburgh drafted two corners this year, with the current guys on the roster not having a ton of value. Boykin is instantly their best cover guy, it’ll be interesting to see if he’ll get his wish of playing outside since the Steelers don’t have a guy in place at the top of the depth chart.

What remarks you may ask? These are the comments from Boykin in a text message to Comcast Sporstnet’s Derrick Gunn. ” He can’t relate and that makes him uncomfortable, he likes total control of everything, and he don’t like to be uncomfortable. Players excel when you let them naturally be who they are, and in my experience that hasn’t been important to him, but you guys have heard this before me.”

While those comments can be seen as highly controversial, take heed to Geoff Mosher’s tweet above, Boykin was happy to leave so it’s not as if he has anything against his former coach. This is not the first time Kelly’s been accused of having issues with some African-American players, we’ll obviously never know what the true issue is, or if there is an issue at all. But it’s certainly worth keeping an eye on as Chip’s reign continues in the City of Brotherly Love.

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CEO/Founder of My Mind on Sports For More Information on Wilson, check out his Bio in the "Team" Section Follow Wilson on Twitter: @Willietspeaks

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