Former CFL star LB Alex Singleton wants to be back in Philadelphia, but ‘it’s in the Eagles hands’

Photo courtesy: Kiel Leggere/Philadelphia Eagles

Former star CFL linebacker Alex Singleton finished his 2020 NFL season with a bang.

Singleton made 14 tackles, one tackle for loss, one quarterback hit, and one sack in Philadelphia’s season-ending 20-14 loss to Washington. The 27-year-old enters the off-season as an exclusive rights free agent.

“I want to be here, this is the place that gave me an opportunity. As much as I know about the exclusive rights, it’s in the Eagles’ hands. Hopefully I’m back here for 2021,” Singleton said in his post-game video conference.

The ERFA designation is put on any NFL player with fewer than three accrued seasons and an expired contract. If his original team offers him a one-year contract and the league minimum, based on his credited seasons, the player cannot negotiate with other teams.

In order to accrue a season, a player must have been on full-play status for at least six regular season games in a given season. A player under contract must report to his team at least 30 days prior to the start of the regular season to accrue a season.

Used as a measure for many benefits, it is most notably used to determine a player’s minimum salary. To earn a credited season, a player must be on full-pay status for a total of three or more regular season games.

“I haven’t thought about nothing but Washington this whole week, and Dallas the week before that,” Singleton said about his contract status.

“This is the National Football League, if you start thinking about the future you’re going to get punched in the mouth. I’ve been focusing 100 percent on the games that we’ve had.”

Eagles see Alex Singleton’s ‘arrow up’ as a starting NFL linebacker


Singleton played in 16 games, starting 11 on defence for defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz. He recorded 120 tackles, 75 solo, two sacks, two fumble recoveries, one pass knockdown and one interception, which was returned for the game-clinching touchdown during the Eagles first win of the season in Week 4.

“That’s the smartest football mind I’ve ever been around. I take notes all the time,” Singleton said. “He says all the time that he might be the hardest guy on us, you learn to respect it, and I respect it more than anything in the world. Couldn’t be happier to play for him.”

Singleton led the (4-11-1) Eagles in total tackles by a wide margin and ranked 15th among all defenders in the NFL. It would be wise for Philadelphia to retain Singleton, but if he hit the open market there would be many suitors.

Justin Dunk is a football insider, sports reporter and anchor.