Howie Roseman said the Eagles were close to a deal this afternoon and he proved to be right. The Eagles signed Trent Edwards to a 1-year deal. Per the team, Edwards will compete with Mike Kafka for the backup QB spot.
What does this mean for the Eagles? It is a good move because it gives them a bit of a safety net, but still allows them the freedom to do what they want. Edwards has been a solid starter in the past. He suffered a big hit back in 2009 and has been wildly inconsistent since then. He was cut by the Raiders last summer and no one signed him the rest of the year.
The Eagles goal is for Mike Kafka to be the backup this year, but he has to earn that job. Edwards is here to be competition. The Eagles apparently have liked him since he came out (same draft as Kevin Kolb). Edwards is a veteran player who should pick up the playbook quickly. The Eagles run a WCO based system, but it is very different in practical application than the WCO’s that Edwards has been in. He’ll have to adjust to things. The good news is that he’s a passing QB with an extensive background in the WCO style of offense. A lot of this was new to Vince Young last year, both playbook and the amount of passing. That showed and he never looked like the QB we hoped to see.
I mentioned the phrase “safety net” earlier and what I mean by that is that Edwards is a guy that should be able to come in and be a functional QB. He has the experience. He has the size and physical tools. He has shown some ability in the past. Edwards isn’t a project who is making the transition from college to the NFL or a guy with no playing experience. Clearly with Marty Mornhinweg and Andy Reid running the show the goal is to have much more than a functional QB. They want someone that can be a good passer. It remains to be seen if Edwards can do that again.
I do think it is possible that both Kafka and Edwards make the final roster. Ideally you’d prefer to have one of them and a young guy, but I’m not sure that is a likely outcome this year. With Mike Vick as the starter you have to prepare as if the backup is going to start a couple of games. That means the #3 QB can’t be looked at strictly as a developmental player. The #3 guy needs to be a functional player.
There are two factors at play here. First, I hate the QB class. The popular topic now is having the Eagles take QB Ryan Tannehill with pick 15. There is an argument to be made, but the problem is that he could very well be selected in the Top10. I do not think he is worth trading up for. I’m not sure he’s worth pick 15 to a team that has a QB in place. After Luck, RG3, and Tannehill…I don’t trust any QB prospect. You’ll hear people talk about the positive aspects of these guys:
Those guys will be of interest to some teams, but I don’t see them as being better than Kafka. I know, Mike is a question mark now and has two years under his belt. That isn’t a good sign. The guy didn’t get any passing camps or mini-camps last spring and that is a major factor. Matt Hasselbeck used time like that to develop when he was a backup in GB. You just aren’t going to develop that much during the season. QBs need reps and coaching. That happens in the spring.
There are some late round QBs of interest, but these aren’t guys you would project onto the roster. They would need to earn a spot. You need 2 other QBs in place that have a legit shot to make the team. That would be Kafka and Edwards.
The X-factor here is that the Eagles could love some QB in the draft that I don’t and take that player. Reid normally falls in love with a QB every year. Not many actually get picked. I don’t know who the lucky guy will be this year (beyond RG3). If that player is available, Reid could pull the trigger. Big Red and I don’t always agree on QBs.
My personal favorite scenario is Hasselbeck getting cut by the Titans and coming here, pushing Kafka to the #3 spot for one final year. I would love to add a developmental QB to the situation, but there just aren’t guys I like. I’d rather give Kafka a full offseason to learn and then show what he can do (or not do) this summer. At that point we’ll know whether he has a future or needs to call TO about joining forces in the IFL.
Edwards is here for now. Could be #2, #3, or a disposable commodity that never even takes a snap for us.