Howie Talks

Posted: April 20th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 80 Comments »

GM Howie Roseman had his annual pre-draft PC today.  Let’s talk about some of the highlights.

BPA.  This stands for Best Player Available.  The goal in the draft, especially the early rounds, is to upgrade the overall team.  Sometimes a team will reach for a player based on need.  There are times when that has to be done, but you can hurt yourself if you pass on special talent for a lesser player who is more of a need pick.  One of the big talking points for Roseman is going BPA this year.  The Eagles didn’t do that last year, but I think a lot of that had to do with the lockout.  Teams didn’t know what to expect from free agency so there was more of an emphasis on need last April than usual.  The focus this year is definitely going for talent.

“It sounds simple but it’s the truth,” said Roseman. “It’s very hard because of the way this league is now and the nature of it and the pressure on everyone to sit there when you have this need sticking out at you and you know that you have a player ranked higher to still take that best player, because you want to win right now. If you go back to what’s in the best long-term interests of the franchise as opposed to really what’s in your best interests, you’re going to make the right decision.

“If we take the best player and add competition, that will only bring good things for our team … There are some variations in that. If you have guys closely graded and you don’t have anyone at that specific spot, you’re going to take that position. But if there’s any variation in the grade, we’re going to take the best player.”

Keep the Senior Bowl and Combine in proper perspective.   This is another popular theme with the Eagles.  I’m not so sure I fully get it, though.  Brandon Graham was great at the 2010 Senior Bowl.  Did the Eagles take him because of just that?  No.  Graham led the nation in TFLs that year.  He also had a good showing at the Combine.  Graham held up to any set of criteria.  Nate Allen was good at the Senior Bowl.  He also was good on film and at the Combine.

I’m not sure who the Eagles took because of an over-inflated performance at the Senior Bowl.  I wonder if this is somewhat of a PR thing being done by the team to shake the perception that the Eagles overrate the Senior Bowl.  Go all the way back to Trevor Laws.  He was great at the Senior Bowl.  He also had a great Senior season.  He then lasted to the middle of the 2nd round.  There was nothing bad about that pick (from a value standpoint) …except for the results.

As for the Combine…that is more open.  Keenan Clayton had a great Combine.  He was also light and not a real physical player.  He wasn’t drafted until the 4th round so it isn’t as if the team wasted a pick on him.  Daniel Te’o-Nesheim (god I hated typing that name) was over-drafted.  He did post good workout numbers.  I wasn’t a big fan of his tape, but even DTN had 29 career sacks.  He wasn’t a workout warrior that didn’t produce in college.

Back to the theme (whether PR or real)…

In going back and reviewing the successes and failures of their recent drafts, the Eagles, according to Roseman, identified the occasional positional reach as a flaw. Another area they’ve aimed to clean up is any emphasis placed on a prospect’s performance during the post-season All-Star games and the NFL Scouting Combine. Because of that, Roseman said they’ve only made “tweaks” to the draft board since December.

Quick note…many of you may wonder if the Eagles aren’t reaching based on the Senior Bowl or Combine and the guys have such great careers…why aren’t the players working out better?  First, injuries had a huge impact on both Brandon Graham and Nate Allen.  If both players rebound as hoped, the popular notions about the Eagles drafting could change drastically.

That said, I do think one trap the Eagles have fallen into (and I’m guilty myself at times) is focusing on college accomplishment too much rather than pro potential.  DTN had 29 sacks in college.  I could watch the tape and see his lack of burst.  Loved his motor and toughness, but just didn’t see the ability for him to fly off the edge and beat NFL LTs.  This year I see Quinton Coples struggling with college LTs.  I don’t think he’s meant to play RDE.  If you want him for LDE, go get him.

Character.  Now this is really interesting stuff.  Let’s hear from Howie first.

Through trial and error, the Eagles have learned over recent years that certain character traits or behaviors that might have sent up a red flag now might be looked at through a different prism.

“There’s been an evolution on the thinking on the character. I can’t tell you that we’ve got a clear-cut answer on it, but we’ve tried to make up some tiers of things that are acceptable and unacceptable,” Roseman said.

At its very essence, Roseman doesn’t want to penalize young, 20-year-old men for doing things that young, 20-year-old men do.

“You just want to make sure that you’re not punishing someone because they’re young and trying to have some fun in college and they weren’t doing anything that’s going to limit their potential in the NFL or affect their ability to be a good teammate or that they’re a bad person and they’re going to make bad decisions and put the organization at risk,” Roseman said.

It’s a “very thin” line, Roseman admits.

“You’re still dealing with really young people and people trying to find themselves,” he said. “That’s what makes the draft so tricky.”

The Eagles have passed on some talented prospects in recent years due to character concerns.  Some of the players have had issues in the NFL while others have stayed completely out of trouble.  This is an area where I think the Eagles are wise to be more open-minded.  I want a Super Bowl, not a Norman Rockwell painting featuring the Philadelphia Eagles.

I am willing to have some kids with less than ideal backgrounds as long as they are the right kind of players.  I don’t want high maintenance guys that can’t be relied on.  If a guy is coachable and plays his tail off on Sundays, I can live with him not being a choirboy.  You don’t want too many guys with issues, but mixing in a couple is okay.  If the player has strong football character, I’m more open to off-field questions.

I do think it is important that Howie and the team are reviewing past drafts to see trends and errors.  It can be easy to fall into a distinct way of doing things.  I believe that the key to good writing is good editing.  The same principle applies to drafting.  Study what works and what doesn’t to see how you need to adapt.  Find your mistakes.  Learn from them. Don’t repeat them.

Should be really interesting to see what changes the Eagles make this year.

* * * * *

Will Asante Samuel join the Mile High Club?  He is now being linked to the Broncos.  Reportedly Denver made a couple of offers.  Go to BGN to read the full details.

There are plenty of teams that want Samuel.  The tricky part is dealing with him and his agent.  If Samuel will back off his demands a bit, I think the Eagles can work out a deal quickly and send him on his way.

* * * * *

Mike Mayock had a pre-draft conference call today.  He said that he thinks the only player the Eagles will move up for is SS Mark Barron.  I think just the opposite, that the Eagles won’t have much interest at all.  Mayock is wiser than me and has infinitely more connections (I can out-drink him!), but I do wonder about this scenario.  I hope the Eagles are spreading the word that Barron is a target and that’s what Mayock is hearing, rather than legit info.

Mayock is down on Quinton Coples.  He is very, very down on Vontaze Burfict.

* * * * *

Donovan McNabb is back in the news.  McNabb told an interviewer that he sees himself as a Hall of Fame QB.  Uh, no.  Since we’re a week from the draft this is the quick version.

Donovan is healthy.  Donovan wants to play.  32 teams are NOT interested.  That’s as simple and strong a case as I can make against him.  Donovan says his stats compare favorably to some guys who are in the HOF.  I think you guys know the old quote…there are lies, damned lies, and statistics.  One of the PFT writers summed up the situation well.   He said Donovan was unable to make the leap from good QB to great QB.  I do agree with that.

This will be an excellent topic in June when we can really get into it, but I think Donovan hurts himself by stating his case.  Did Jim Kelly ever have to do this?  And I think asking to get in can backfire with some media members.

_


  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PYKGABCJ34Z4TOFYAA53LMBXJI Jamie

    A Hall of Famer doesn’t throw an INT after the 2 minute warning in the 2001 NFCCG when driving for the Super Bowl. He doesn’t throw the heart breaking INT a year later in the 2002 NFCCG either. He wins the 2004 Super Bowl and not the two back breaking INT’s that killed 2 scoring opportunities (the 3rd INT didn’t really have a bearing on the outcome of the game). A Hall of Famer completes the 4th down pass in the 2008 NFCCG and then makes it to the Super Bowl. A Hall of Famer doesn’t throw up on every football field in the state of Florida. A Hall of Famer is not second best. Donovan McNabb is not a Hall of Famer. But I still loved him as my QB and if I had to do the 1999 draft over, I’d still pick him.

    • D3Keith

      I always said McNabb was a Super Bowl win away from having a better playoff record than Favre or Peyton Manning. Both of those guys are no-brainer Hall of Famers.
      Favre playoff record: 13-11, including 1-1 in Super Bowls
      Peyton: 9-10, 1-1
      McNabb, 9-7, 0-1

      Had he gone on a SB run and won in 2009, he’d have a hands down better record than both of those guys. As it stands, he’s got em in winning pct. but the no Super Bowls hurts.

      The second and third acts in people’s careers really matters. It gives them legitimacy that it’s them, not just the organization. Kurt Warner went to another Super Bowl, Favre to an NFC CG, Manning I’m not so sure about Denver, but we’ll see. McNabb flamed out hard.

      The other thing is it’s going to be a long line for HOF QBs around the time McNabb is eligible. Favre and Warner are in. Peyton and Brady will be. Brees will have a shot.

      Gonna be awful tough to get in up against that crowd, and win the respect of the voters back after he’s been burning it up the past few years. He needs a glorious last act, and the only way that’s coming is Vick and Kafka and Trent Edwards all go down and he leads the Eagles to a Super Bowl by handing off to McCoy a lot.

      • http://www.facebook.com/xbcsmith Brett Smith

        How is Kurt Warner a HOF QB if DMac isn’t?

        Kurt 1-2 in SB. Sucked really bad in between those SBs. Not sure why anyone considers him outside of him being a really good guy.

        Warner’s SB win came with 3 HOF players (possibly 4) on the Offense.

        How many HOFs did Dmac play with?

        DMac has better numbers… didn’t win a SB.

        I am not arguing for Dmac to go to the HOF… had he played better the last 2 years and kept his mouth shut he might have a better chance.

        I am just saying that neither Warner nor Dmac belong in the hall… they were both just good QBs.

        • DTrainExpress

          Warner is a Hall of Famer because of Marshall Faulk. That’s it. 90% of football fans still want to believe that it’s an individual sport like golf or tennis.
          Look at John Elway. He was the biggest choker in the history of choke. Then he got Terrell Davis. Then he became an all-time great.

          Notice it in the language too. I always hear that “Eli Manning has won two Super Bowls.” That’s not true. The New York Giants have won two Super Bowls with teams Eli was a part of. The other 52 guys were apparently just dreck along for the ride. Because in the eyes of football fans those guys don’t matter, only the QB does.

          • http://www.facebook.com/xbcsmith Brett Smith

            So we agree?

            Warner is not a HOF but a QB on a Team that had Pace, Faulk, Bruce, Holt on the offense.

          • ACViking

            That’s a Bingo.

        • ultramattman

          Kurt Warner won two MVP awards. He led the league in yardage once and touchdowns twice. His career completion % of 65.5 is third all-time. He won a Superbowl and was Superbowl MVP, and appeared in two more Superbowls.

          Warner outshines McNabb in just about any measure I can come up with. He has hardware, numbers, and rings. McNabb, frankly, has none of those. The two MVP awards alone puts him in some pretty rarified territory.

          • iskar36

            Fully agree with this. Warner absolutely benefited from Faulk, Bruce, Holt, and Pace, but he was certainly not a nobody amongst a bunch of stars. He was an important part of that team and there is a reason he won two MVP awards. That alone puts him in the hall of fame discussion, and when you add in a superbowl plus two more superbowl appearances, he becomes a guy that McNabb can not be compared to.

    • TheRogerPodacter

      hah. yea, i have to begrudgingly agree with you. i always liked donnie, probably more than most. but looking back, he left way too many plays on the field. i think you summed up all of the reasons why he’s not going to make it in.

      and yea, i’d probably still pick him in that draft too.

    • ultramattman

      Peyton Manning threw a game-losing INT in the Superbowl. Tom Brady threw an INT after the two minute warning of an AFCCG. Those things happen to Hall Of Famers.

      Donovan’s issue is that he doesn’t have the rings OR the numbers. The man never even had a 4,000 yard season, and his career high in passing TDs is 30, achieved once. He was a great runner for a stretch, but not in the league of guys like Cunningham and Vick and only for the first five years of his career. Donovan’s numbers look *really* pedestrian on the page. Ironic since, according to Donnie numbers are the FIRST thing you should look at for a HOF case. (Followed by the number of times you lead your team to The Big Game, which is the conference championship game.)

  • Thunder_lips

    Poor Donnie. His full quote sounds a lot better than the “I’m a hall of famer” headline most people will see, but his end of career shenanigans have killed most of the good will he had built up.

    On a similar note, I don’t like how it’s become popular to ask qb’s no-win questions and then rake them over the coals for answering. If Eli had said “no way, Brady is WAY better than me” or if Flacco said “uh, I’m a pretty mediocre QB” or if Donnie said “I never thought of myself as an elite QB, so no, not hof material” we would all be outraged.

    • TommyLawlor

      Very good point about QBs and leading questions. My beef with Donnie is that his answer felt awfully prepared. I want the guy to say “I’m happy with my career and feel I’m in the same league as those guys who did make it, but I’ll leave it up to the voters to decide who gets in and who doesn’t”. You can be positive without selling yourself.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1118400638 Patrick Clausen

        Agreed. if Donny sold himself a little cheaper, things might have looked different. I don’t think he belongs in the HoF without a SB ring, but i do think he deserves credit for one thing. Donnie started the new age of QB athleticism. When we drafted Donnie, he was by far the most mobile QB, even more than Cunningham in my opinion. Now, you can’t find a recent QB who can’t take off with the ball. McNabb was the first pocket passer who perfected the things that everyone praises about Rodgers, Roethlisberger, Stafford etc.

    • mfrey0118

      If Donnie said he wasn’t a HOF QB I would not be outraged, I would be impressed at his ability to self-analyze. Of course, he’s way too passive-agressive for that…

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_GWMNZ32U6YPGGA7N4JNWH4OSJE Mac

        He certainly isn’t winning any awards for humility.

    • DTrainExpress

      I couldn’t agree more! I love how we expect these guys who have been in the 1% of competitors their whole lives to sit there and dispassionately assess their own value.

    • ultramattman

      Wow, I thought this was a rare case where the real clip is even BETTER than the headline. McNabb didn’t just say ‘Yes, I think I deserve to be in the Hall Of Fame.’ We were treated to gems like ‘the Conference Championship IS the Big Game’, and listing himself among Peyton Manning and Dan Marino then saying ‘you have to look at the numbers!’ Or explaining that what counts is leading your team TO the big game.

      This wasn’t Eli stumbling over a gotcha question about elite quarterbacks. This was McNabb launching his carefully prepared HOF case, rife with blatant excuses. It was really something.

      • Thunder_lips

        Maybe I saw an abridged version. I didn’t think it was that bad.

  • Thunder_lips

    Also, someone please call George Costanza and have him give Asante the “it’s not you, it’s me routine.” it’s been fun, but this needs to end for all our sake.

    • TommyLawlor

      Apology accepted. Barely, though.

  • D3Keith

    I hope Roseman eventually nails a draft, or Graham/Allen end up excelling and we can view him favorably. Because I really like him. He not only says all the right things, but he keeps it humble, he acknowledges flaws and goes back to try to improve, and he’s aggressive dealing.

    In all honesty, we can’t say he’s hurt the team since he’s been the man, but most of his sucesses have been in free agency. Would be nice if he just lit this draft up. The ammo is there. Let’s take three of the top 51 guys instead of 6 5th rounders, and hope two of them are studs or all three contribute.

    I think this is the right approach for this season too, just take good players. Down the road when they’re actually great players, the guys blocking their paths won’t even be on the roster.

    Also love that no matter what happens in this draft, we get DeMeco, we’ve got Brandon Graham returning, and we aren’t losing anyone we’ll truly miss.

    • TheRogerPodacter

      whats weird, though, is that after every draft, most of us are left pretty happy. sure, there’s one or two picks in each draft that i might not be thrilled with (DTN, for one…).
      we can praise roseman for a fantastic draft the week after, but in all honesty, we wont know how good it is for years to come. just like how we can’t call players a bust or not for a couple of years later, we can’t say players are good/great/etc for a couple of years too. there’s no sense in loving or hating a draft as soon as it happens.
      (though we can all love the *potential* of the draft, i guess thats different)

      i think that if graham/allen never got injured, we wouldnt even be having this talk now. and i think thats mostly just bad luck.

      • http://www.facebook.com/xbcsmith Brett Smith

        Agreed…

        Even when Modrak was here after the draft I was always pumped. Looking back it is what it is “A crap shoot”. You just never know how a guy is going to turn out.

        Also I have no use for a 2nd round QB.

        After looking at 1st round QBs vs the rest of the rounds you are more likely to get a clipboard holder anywhere after pick 15.

        You can get bargain clip board holders as UDFAs so why waste a pick on them?

        Or just raid other teams Practice Squads for Reserve Clipboard Holders.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_GWMNZ32U6YPGGA7N4JNWH4OSJE Mac

      Always nice to see when other Eagles fans support a guy that I think is doing a pretty dang good job.

    • wee2424

      Jason peters?

  • JRO91

    Asante for DJ Williams and a 6th? Could DJ play SAM for us? That would really free up BPA threw the draft….

    • http://twitter.com/bebinabraham bebin abraham

      he plays will and it would be a straight up trade

  • T_S_O_P

    DeCastro is a BPA candidate? Personally, I think he won’t be around at 15; but if he is?

    • JRO91

      I don’t think Decastro makes it past Dallas/Seattle if he even falls that far…..They both have a real need for interior lineman. If by some miracle he fell to Philly, I think they would pass on him. Just resigned Mathis and drafted Watkins last year. That may be a trade back scenario

    • Arby1

      Barring a trade back, yes, definitely. He fits that definition to a T. Not a need pick but a great value. But then, I wanted Alex Mack and Maurkice Pouncey too… I’d think he’s an all-pro within 2 years.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_GWMNZ32U6YPGGA7N4JNWH4OSJE Mac

      To me… he could be BPA, which means (most likely) that we trade back.

    • Davesbeard

      Would be an interesting test of their ‘Take the BPA’ policy if he was there, ranked significantly ahead of everyone else on the board but they can’t get any takers for a fair trade. It would seem a real waste of resources to draft another guard high, even if he is clearly the BPA.

    • TommyLawlor

      OL is one spot where BPA is tough. You don’t rotate/substitute those players so there has to be an opening for the player. Not sure I see one in the immediate future. Will be real interesting to see if he makes it to 15 and how the Eagles handle that.

      • TheRogerPodacter

        Tommy, what if the player taken is more versatile and can be the primary backup in case of injury at multiple positions along the OL?
        i know most of us here are content with king dunlap at most. if we could upgrade that position, it would give flexibility to handling the peters/bell situation next year. that way, they can still cut bell to not pay him a ton of money in the event that peters is slower than expected to recover.

      • T_S_O_P

        As stated, I can’t see him getting to 15, and if he was a tackle and not a guard, he would get past 5.

  • Skeptic_Eagle

    It’s great to hear a national football analyst like Mayock, if only for the Philly accent he delivers his analysis in, but I don’t get the breathless re-tweets and aggrandization of his take on things. He’s basically just another draftnik with a lot of opinions, as far as I’m concerned. Why is Mayock considered a more important “draft guru” than Bucky Brooks, who was both a player and a professional scout for a few organizations? Not trying to denigrate Mayock, because I like him as an analyst, just trying to understand the phenomenon. Does he have some amazing and stellar track record of nailing down future all-pros, while avoiding busts? Or is it just that he’s just a stylized and authentic sounding communicator of his opinions? Not trying to be flippant, serious question.

    I could not care less about their draft process or strategy, in fact, a look into it makes me feel a bit like that old saying regarding retaining your appetite for sausage. They just need to produce better picks. If they are running a PR campaign to increase fans confidence in their draft competence, it’s going to be short-lived if they can’t augment the campaign with a yield of NFL talent from the upcoming draft – not “long term guys” or guys that get excused from producing because of injury, players that will actively contribute to bringing a Superbowl to the City, soon.

    • Davesbeard

      Because he’s right much more frequently than most other draftniks. That and he is a massive lad.

      *Disclaimer*
      Definition of Lad for non uk residents.
      http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=lad

    • D3FB

      The thing with Mayock is that compared to the talking egos on ESPN he comes off much more intelligent. He also does much more film breakdown on air. Thats why he is much more popular among the average draftnik.

      • D3Keith

        Precisely this.

        For every time Kiper or McShay say something that makes you go “WTF?” Mayock makes you go “yeah good point” or “I never knew that.”

        He might not be better than Brooks or Brandt or Rang, but he’s got way more visibility. He’s the most football-specific thorough guy on a TV network.

        Semi on-topic, saw something with Bill Polian on air the other day … Loved him. ESPN host was trying to give him softball questions and his answers were like “No. Hell no. That’s not an issue.” no hedging or dancing around or either-or. Hope he sticks.

    • Kammich

      I’ve always really liked Mayock for that same local flare, but I like him even more because I think his passion for scouting comes through whenever he talks. He would do his job for free, I have no doubts. I talked to him a bit at the 2011 East/West Shrine Game and he was a totally nice, open guy who seemed like he would’ve sat and talked shop all day if his schedule allowed him.

      I can’t even tolerate ESPN’s draft coverage any more. I deeply respect Kiper and have never had any problem with him, but the animosity between him and McShay is just ridiculous now. Where Mike Mayock ignites conversations and respectfully listens and converses with everyone around him, the Kiper/McShay discussions just blow up every single time into damn-near childish name calling and “I WATCH MORE FILM THAN YOU” b.s.

    • TommyLawlor

      Bucky Brooks is an idiot. I’m shocked that he keeps a job.

      Mike Mayock is the top draft analyst because there is no guessing with him. He studies game tape after game tape and grades players. He talks to scouts and teams and gathers their opinions. Mike is smart enough to use the information given to him, but focuses on his own notes/thoughts for player evaluation. When the two things don’t meet up, he does more research. Sometimes Mike stands his ground, other times he changes his mind. There are no BS games with him.

      Kiper is selling his books. He does and says things to draw attention to himself. I like Mel, but he’s half-salesman/half-draftnik. Todd McShay…I’m not sure what to make of him. He’s not a complete idiot, but he says and does some highly questionable things. He also lacks the personality that Mel brings to the table.

      Are there times when Mike is wrong and McShay right? Sure. Do I ever disagree with Mike? Sure. The difference is that I have the utmost respect for his opinion. I know it is based on good football knowledge, lots of study/research, and a good understanding of the big picture.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_GWMNZ32U6YPGGA7N4JNWH4OSJE Mac

        Tommy, you gotta get the word out brotha… Bucky Brooks is a fool! I can’t believe some of the excrement that nfl.com is willing to post with his name attached.

  • http://twitter.com/n3th3rman Christopher Miller

    I am not as down on HR as most…I think at least a portion of his defensive struggles have been the result of young DC’s not able to direct him on what they need to run their defense.

    I agree with Thunder about the media baiting athletes in general, but Don sure does not help himself.

    One article I would love to see closer to the start of training camp would be what the Eagles could/should do to get off to a better start. Seems like more often than not we get off to a slow start, and I feel like the new rules about the physicality of practice will hurt even more. Why do you think we struggle early? This year it feels like a good start is critical.

  • Kevin_aka_RC

    I’d be furious if we traded up for Barron. Not only would I NOT take him at 15, I wouldn’t give up at least a 3rd for the opportunity to draft him. We have 3 young safeties already, we need more age. Barron likely isn’t BPA on the board by the time we pick him. He’s a solid safety in a weak class. I sincerely hope that this is a smokescreen.

    • TommyLawlor

      Agreed. Lets see what JaiJar can do. That said, I do wonder if Mayock is the fool here or me. Maybe I’m overlooking the obvious and Barron is a serious target. I hope not, but can’t say I’m right with 100% confidence.

  • Kmac318

    I wish that mcnabb w

    • TommyLawlor

      McNabb is getting humble pie by the train load and not handling it well. Rough finish to a distinguished career. I feel bad for him, but he makes it hard to love him. This really is a time to choose silence. Better to be silent and thought a fool than to open one’s mouth and remove all doubt.

  • Kevin_aka_RC

    If McClane’s reports are accurate, I really hope we DON’T trade Asante for a 5. We’re better off keeping him as DRC/Nnamdi insurance and eating the money. What’s the point of only getting a 5? We have cap room, so money isn’t an issue. He’s been a good player for us. We shouldn’t give him away.

    • http://www.facebook.com/xbcsmith Brett Smith

      Because we need to “Move the Distraction” would be a good reason in my book.

      Asante seems like a dude that could rip a locker room apart if he is not happy.

      He doesn’t fit the new system and is not going to sit on the bench quietly.

    • Arby1

      The question is: would you pay him 10 mil to be a backup to DRC? Or takes something, anything, to shed that contract? I agree it’s frustrating to see his value less than it’s true worth but the Eagles have a tendency to do things like this. I wanted to trade him 2 years ago when his value was much higher, fwiw.

      • Kirk Belmont

        If we kept him we would eat the money…we need that money for Shady’s new deal

    • D3Keith

      I love Asante, but he cannot be on this team next year
      no need to review in detail. Doesn’t fit the scheme. Does his own thing. Takes up a bunch of money.
      There is no “not worth trading him,” only “not worth bringing him back.”
      Trust me, nobody was more excited than me last year at the idea of Asante on one side, Nnamndi on the other and DRC in the cut. I’ve seen all I need to see there.
      Unless Asante is magically committed to playing press man next year, why? All you’re going to do is get what we got last year, or get a Lito-as-3rd-corner situation.
      I love the guy, but take the pick. Clear the salary. Improve your defense. = win threefold.
      D3Keith  |  Posted 13 hours ago

    • TommyLawlor

      I can’t confirm/deny McLane’s report that the Eagles would settle for a 5th. News to me.

      We must move Asante. He won’t start here in 2012. We want to play physical press coverage. Asante won’t do that. Keeping him just doesn’t work schematically.

      • http://www.facebook.com/xbcsmith Brett Smith

        I was never a fan of Asante because I like tough hard nosed corners like Sheldon Brown… I grew up with Eric Allen and have no use for guys that can’t tackle (not that DRC or Nnamdi can). I just don’t want to see anymore diving out of the way when an RB is headed towards the corner.

        I also prefer press coverage. Give me the relentless pass rush and blanket man on the outsides and I will be happy.

        I will take a 5th to see him gone as we can use another Celek.

  • P_P_K

    Re: Character. I highly hope (and not just because today is 4/20!) that the Eagles are adopting a more realistic approach to modern athletes. I feel one of the weanesses in our personnel decisions is because there has been too much empahsis on the guy himself, rather than his performance. I personally don’t care what a guy does on his own time, just as I don’t care what my local plumber does on his down time. As long as a guy comes to play, or unclog the pipes, I’m good.

    • iskar36

      I agree with what you are saying to a point. What a guy does on his own time is his own business. However, especially in today’s NFL, the NFL has made it a point that what a guy does on his own time is part of the business of the NFL. Furthermore, if the NFL is not happy with how you are representing the NFL, there will be repercussions. Also, there is value to locker room chemistry, and it is important to not simply ignore that. Having said that, I certainly don’t need all high character, team captain-type guys on the team. If you bring in a couple of guys that require a little more guidance, as long as you have the balance of a few team leaders and quality coaches, I don’t think you affect team chemistry.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_AHVR5EZERRCZSD77DMKWAEEPLA Steve H

    I saw today that Donovan said he was still playing at the pinnacle during his time with Washington and Minnesota. Is that accruate? If he really said that then he has truly fallen off the deep end.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/HYBAPYINPVP6FEYUW4VUVMCC3Q K.Y.

    Just read Tommy’s piece on Fan-dom. My read is if Cox makes it past pick #6, it would be smart to consider making a trade up for him. Throw in our 3rd round pick plus Asante to go with our 1st, that would be sweat enough for some teams. Howie talks about getting the BPA. Cox is that and fill a need. It makes a ton of sense.

    Getting the CB at pick around #5 has a price too rich to pay. Better off to stay back in the 2nd and 3rd for a slot CB who can also play outside down the road.

    If no trade up and none good at #15, it would be wise to trade back and get some 2nd and 3rd round picks. Tommy likes those rounds in this draft. When we don’t have a glaring need in the roster, more picks give us more chances on BPA and could only help the team’s talent pool.

  • CTIggle

    Tommy- maybe I am reading between the lines too much, but in the Spadaro/Roseman interview video (at 5:15 mark), when asked about Vick, Roseman’s words say he is excited about Vick, but his body language/cues suggest some misleading signals (shaking head no as he says this). I’m no expert on lie detection, but I have taken a few classes from ex-CIA guys on the topic for work, and this seems like a classic deception signal.

    Combined with chatter on the Eagles looking at QBs, do you think there is internal conflict on whether Vick is the best QB for this team in 2013+? Whether he has hit a wall (or regressed) in his development?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_AHVR5EZERRCZSD77DMKWAEEPLA Steve H

      Hah, I actually learned some of the same things for Journalism.

    • TommyLawlor

      I think the Eagles have mixed feelings on Vick. They loved the 2010 guy. The 2011 version was too inconsistent and sloppy. 2012 is a mystery. The hope is that a full offseason and a more stable OL will bring out the best in him. If he plays up to his potential, the job is his with no questions. If he is up and down again, the team might be looking for a new starter in 2013.

      I don’t think there is so much an internal debate on Vick as there is just flat out frustration that he didn’t play better last year. This is going to be Vick’s first offseason as the starting QB since 2006. That could make a huge difference and I’m sure the FO/staff expect him to play much better.

      • iskar36

        This is slightly off topic, but your post made me think about the QB situation some more:

        The more I think about it, the less I like the idea of the Eagles drafting a QB early this year. As you suggested, this year is pretty much a make or break season for both Vick and AR. If Vick bounces back, he is the unquestioned starter moving forward. However, if he struggles, I think the Eagles need to look for another QB. On top of that, if Vick struggles, it would be hard to imagine the team being very successful, which ultimately translates to AR would likely leave in the offseason. If we draft a QB high this year, whoever comes in to replace AR would be forced to use a QB picked by AR rather than get the opportunity to pick his own QB. I just don’t think that makes a ton of sense.

        • TommyLawlor

          Eagles either really want a QB this year or want everyone to think they really want a QB.

          I just don’t see good QB targets this year. I do like Tannehill, but don’t see him getting to 15. Why reach? Wait and address it next year.

          • CTIggle

            Or they really want Vick to think they want a QB so he works hard and gets back to 2010 Vick???

  • ACViking

    RE: D-Mac’s Playoff failures.

    McNabb dragged that 2001 Eagles’ team to within a FG of the SB. Two things should be remembered. One is the Rams decided to actually play football in the 2nd half and kicked the Eagles defense up and down the field. The other — and this is true for the ’01-’03 period — McNabb was throwing the the likes of Thrash, Pinkston, Na Brown, and Mitchell. (And while Brian Westbrook was a great RB from ’04-’08, the Eagles were not built around running the ball.)

    McNabb had three seasons with at least one great good WR: 2004 and TO.

    Andy Reid put so much on McNabb’s shoulders it’s ridiculous. Reid built that offense around McNabb, Tra Thomas and John Runyon. For reasons unknow — maybe dumb luck — things changed with the ’08 draft when AR added D-Jax and ’09 with Maclin. Then, poof, McNabb was gone.

    Having said all that, the one thing that killed me about D-Mac is he seemed never to win a game on the last drive. The 2008 NFC title game I think sealed that reputation.

    Nevertheless, I think he did more with less than any QB of his ERA, except Brady.

    Does that make him an HOFer? I doubt he’ll ever reach the final 15.

    And it’s too bad because with just a little better talent on both sides of the ball, and some better coaching in 2002 NFC title game v. Tampa and the 2008 NFC title game, I think he’d be a Canton lock. Even with his shortcomings.

    • M0rton

      You have to remember that McNabb, when he was successfull (in 2001-2004, and again in 2008 and 2009), he always played on a team that featured a top-5 defense.

      He’s another one of these QBs that will receieve credit for the strength of the defenses that he played alongside.

      He was never a great QB. He was a *good* QB that won alot of games due to his defense.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1514128048 Kristopher Cebula

        yet the defense never receives any criticism for the losses

    • mheil

      hall of fame QBs have 40,000 yds or a SB win. Donovan has neither. I think if andy had provided him with a better supporting cast, and Andy was a better game day coach, Donovan would have won a championship early in his career. In his later yrs, he fell off a cliff as a QB. Too bad.
      As to Howie, I think he has shown competence in all aspects of the job except drafting in the first three rounds. If he doesn’t produce this yr with his 4 picks in those rounds, it will be a case of your are what your record says you are and his record says he makes too many mistakes in the early rounds.

  • M0rton

    Tommy you need to talk about San Diego State OLB/DE Miles Burris.

    Greg Cosell brought him to my attention and after watching some cuts on youtube, I have to say “wow”.

    He’s definitely the most underrated player in this draft class. He has Clay Mathews / Von Miller potential. In the Eagles’ 4-3 he would be the perfect SLB in the Von Miller mold that can also rush off the edge.

    Highlights:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VapULyU56To&feature=player_embedded

    Greg Cosell article mentioning him:
    http://nflfilms.nfl.com/2012/04/10/cosell-talks-diamonds-in-the-rough/

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=565087931 Jeppe Elmelund van Ee

    I’ve just finished my mock-draft. I’ll post it here, and you can comment if you like. I have absolutely no idea of what the Eagles will do. At this point I hope we can pull of some sort of trade that nets us a 2nd round pick + 2013 1st round pick.

    1. Colts – QB Luck
    2. Redskins – QB RG3
    3. Vikings – LT Kalil
    4. Browns – RB Richardson
    5. Buccaneers – CB Claiborne
    6. Rams – DT Cox
    7. Jaguars – CB Gilmore
    8. Dolphins – QB Tannehill
    9. Panthers – DT Brockers
    10. Bills – WR Blackmon
    11. Chiefs – OG DeCastro
    12. Seahawks – ILB Kuechly
    13. Cardinals – LT Martin
    14. Cowboys – SS Barron
    15. Eagles – DE Perry
    16. Jets – OLB Ingram
    17. Bengals – LDE Coples
    18. Chargers – OG Glenn
    19. Bears – CB Dennard
    20. Titans – OC Konz
    21. Bengals – CB Kirkpatrick
    22. Browns – WR Floyd
    23. Lions – LT Reiff
    24. Steelers – NT Ta’amu
    25. Broncos – DT Worthy
    26. Texans – WR Wright
    27. Patriots – OLB Mercilus
    28. Packers – OLB McClellin
    29. Ravens – ILB Hightower
    30. 49’ers – OG Silatolu
    31. Patriots – DE Reyes
    32. Giants – OG Zeitler

    Notable left-outs:
    DT D. Poe
    TE C. Fleener
    OLB C. Upshaw
    LT M. Adams
    DT D. Still
    WR S. Hill
    DE A. Branch
    OLB Z. Brown
    RB D. Wilson
    QB B. Weeden
    CB J. Jenkins
    WR A. Jeffery
    DE V. Curry

  • dislikedisqus

    I think there’s a middle ground between BPA and filling a need. I’d call it “Biggest Improvement Available.” Where the talent you are picking exceeds the talent currently at that position by the greatest margin.

    • TommyLawlor

      I like that. Might have to steal that from you.

    • Cliff

      Nice! Don’t be surprised if you start seeing that thrown around on ESPN. LOL.

      I don’t get why it’s so difficult for fans to understand you can draft for BPA and need at the same time. They go hand-in-hand.

    • ICDogg

      Good way of looking at it.

      Here’s a question… if somehow, the WR from Notre Dame, Floyd, was available at 15, would you take him? I would.

      • dislikedisqus

        I like big WR’s so won’t be upset if they do. But depends on who else is on board. If Cox or Kuechly is there, I’d probably pick them. Maybe even Barron or that TE from Stanford. Don’t see WR as a position they need to address this year.

  • http://twitter.com/SportiVore SportiVore

    Tommy, you’ve probably already seen this since you write for SB Nation some, but ties to your point above about not being afraid to take a risk on guys with “character concerns.”

    http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/2012/4/20/2962862/nfl-teams-draft-players-arrested-marijuana

  • Nu_B

    Drafttek has us getting Mercilus, J. Worthy, Lavonte David & Brandon Boykin in the first three rounds. That would be just about perfect in my book.

    • D3Keith

      Just today I’ve seen Chandler Jones, Mercilus and Perry. I think everybody has us just grabbing a DL, but I’m not sure we’re just not seeing new names put up there because all the assumed guys are now tired and not attracting eyeballs.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Rai-Wilson/767179403 Rai Wilson

    1) How does BPA work when management has differently valued positions? Kuechley might be the BPA on Thursday, but do Reid and Roseman want to use their first round pick on a strong side linebacker? Even I (whose gotten frustrated at them devaluing the linebacker position over the past several years) don’t want them to do that. If Cox or Kirkpatrick were ranked a little lower than Luke, I’d think they’d still go with one of them. And in a vein similar to that of dislikedisqus, the gap in expected game impact between Cox and (say) Still @ DT might be greater than the expected game impact between Kuechley and (say) Robinson from TX @ strong side linebacker. So “BPA” seems oversimplified to me.

    On a separate note, I actually think Barron might be in play sometime early. Reid is renowned for protecting players, but I think the front office has been remarkably candid about reaching for JaiJar; that he wasn’t good enough to merit being picked where he was. From my outside, uninformed position, I’d like him to get a shot after a real offseason, etc. But management’s pretty public, critical posture hints to me that they might really be dissatisfied with his potential.

  • Baloophi

    Sirius/XM NFL insanity…

    This morning on the drive in I heard a Browns’ fan call in and predict that the Browns would trade down from #4 to #6, and then trade #6 to the Eagles for… #15, Asante Samuel, and BOTH 2nds. The hosts didn’t even let him get to the 6 top 50 picks he expected Cleveland to take.

    Then, humoring him, they asked who he thought the Eagles would give that much up for and he said “Tannohills.” When they reminded him that the Eagles would never trade that much for a back-up the caller scoffed and said, “let’s see what happens two weeks from now.”

    People are insane.