Monday Night Q&A

Posted: April 3rd, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 47 Comments »

A lot of people still seem to wonder how the heck the Eagles can even consider a QB with pick 15 in a year when the team is under pressure to win big.  The answer comes from one of my favorite movies, Spy Game.  Early in the movie Robert Redford does something that seems to be overkill to his assistant.  She asks why.  His response is simple, but brilliant.  “When did Noah build the Ark?  Before it rained…before it rained.”

The Eagles don’t need a QB.  And that’s the key.  The time to draft a QB isn’t when you need one.  You take one a year or two early to get him ready.  Tom Brady was ready to take over for Drew Bledsoe.  Tony Romo was ready to take over for Drew Bledsoe.  Poor Drew.  Aaron Rodgers was ready to take over for Brett Favre.  Steve Young was ready to take over for Joe Montana.

Ideally you take a guy late and develop him, but if you find an early QB you really like, you take him.  This is a key point that I think too many people overlook – the Eagles may love Ryan Tannehill.  May.  If they do, then targeting him does make sense.  If the team likes him, then take him if he falls, but look elsewhere if he’s gone.

I’ve mentioned the possibility of the Eagles moving up for him.  If the team loves him, this would also be a value move.  Make the trade if the price is right, but do not overpay.  We have a QB already in place.  This is the time when we can be selective shoppers.

The NFL is a QB league.  Any time you can get a QB that you’re really high on, I think you have to investigate the move.

Is all the Tannehill talk a smokescreen?   That is possible.  The reason I think it is real is because Andy Reid has looked into QBs each of the last 7 or 8 drafts.  He took Kolb and Kafka, but has done his research on a lot of guys.  The team was prepared to take players who fell in a few different drafts.

And I do think that meeting with Tannehill is important for just that reason…what if he does fall?  You must be prepared for that scenario.  After all, when did Noah build the Ark?

Aren’t smokescreens obvious?  Doesn’t that make them ineffective?   A bit, yes.  This is just like bluffing at poker.  You must be able to sell the smokescreen.  Take Brockers for instance.  This could have been planned for a while.  Send Washburn to his Pro Day.  Then bring Brockers up here.  Teams start to think…hmm, maybe Wash does like the kid.  Things like that.

The other part of the equation is that you need to do enough to keep other teams simply confused.  They don’t have to buy every thing you put out there, but you want them to be confused with what your true draft plans are.  The Eagles were great at this under Heckert and it has continued under Roseman.

The best story is Chris Gocong.  Back in 2006 Eric Mangini was ready to pick him in the 3rd round when the Eagles called up.  The Jets figured they could drop back a few spots and still get Gocong, plus have the extra pick.  Mangini was horrified when the Eagles took his guy…with his pick.  The Eagles had been very secret about Gocong.  It paid off with that move.

Should the Eagles trade back into the late 1st from the 2nd round to get an OT?  No.  There are players to target outside the 1st round.  If the team really liked Reifff, Adams, or Martin…just take him at 15 and be done with it.

Should the Eagles take SS Mark Barron at pick 15?   No. You don’t spend a pick that high on a Safety unless he is special.  Barron is good, but not special.  Worst case scenario, Ja-Jarrett stinks this year and Kurt Coleman is only so-so.  Then we target the Honey Badger next April to be our SS.  He’s not Eric Berry, but is pretty darn close.

Should the Eagles draft Zach Brown in the 2nd round?   I wrote about him for ScoutsNotebook.  The more I watch, the less I like.  I’d rather avoid him at this point.  His tackling just scares the crap out of me.

* * * * *

Read Dave’s column.

* Now think about that and the draft.  Dave says we might re-sign Derek Landri or Trevor Laws and not even draft a DT. No Fletcher Cox?

* He projects Jamar Chaney to SAM.  No Luke Kuechly?

* Says he would be surprised by trading up for a QB.  No Ryan Tannehill?

* Spuds says a player to watch is TE Brett Brackett.  No trading back for Coby Fleener?

None of this is definitive of course.  Maybe the team wanted Dave to mention this stuff.  Maybe he just threw the column together and that’s how it happened to come out.

The point is that at this time of the year you want the other 31 teams (and your fans) as confused as possible.  You want teams/fans reading into every comment and looking for hidden meaning.  Paralysis by analysis.

If you get out your secret decoder rings and re-read the column, you’ll find out who we’re going to really draft.


  • NoDecaf

    “DON’T FORGET TO DRINK YOUR OVALTINE?”

    Grrrrr.

    • TommyLawlor

      Oh fudge…only I didn’t say fudge.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Brian-Tallon/1058432652 Brian Tallon

    We need a backup fro Mike Gibson

    • TommyLawlor

      Gibson and Zane Taylor are competing for backup C/G spots.

      Julian Vandervelde is the top backup OG at this time. Steve Vallos is here to push him.

      • BrianTallon

        Oh Tommy…Tommy Tommy. I guess I need to add the sarcasm tag to everything. This is why we can’t have nice things.

        • TommyLawlor

          Mea culpa.

          As punishment I’ll eat a vegetable tomorrow.

      • Donald Kalinowski

        I did not know Deuce Lutui was a free agent. Is he worth a look as a backup?

  • Pitmanite

    Good stuff here. If they really like Tannehill and he’s there at #15 I’d be happy about the pick. Guy was a converted WR and was pretty successful after stepping in for JJ at A&M. Obviously, he’s very athletic but needs to be groomed. Let him learn the offense and get better for a couple years.

    • TommyLawlor

      He was a QB in high school. He was so athletic that he moved to WR to get on the field and then back to QB.

      • Donald Kalinowski

        The question is whether he has the intellect of Matt Jones.

  • JJ_Cake

    I like your “secret decoder ring” comment, Dave was being pretty cryptic, but I’m concerned our “guy” or even “2nd guy” won’t be there. I’m real concerned that we’re contending from Carolina down to Dallas regarding who we want, and it would be wise to assume those teams also know what they are doing.

    Hope Howie can manage to get one of the 1st round guys we want.

  • Davesbeard

    I have decided that we should suck this year and get a high enough pick to draft that Honey Badger dude. He has some sort of ball magnets in his hands and makes DeSean look like a crap punt returner! Mental.

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

      Alternately…

      We trade our 1st round pick and Asante for a 2nd 5th this year and 1st and 2nd next year, with the superbowl and then have enough ammo to trade up for him.

      I could live with that.

  • JRO91

    Dream first four picks…1st -Luke, 2nd-Curry, 2nd-Boykin, 3rd-Wolfe…my head would explode if the draft fell this way. Tommy – any idea why they are so high on Tapp? I thought for sure they would cut/trade/or restructure. He is a roll player that I felt could have been upgraded. I think Hunt has a much higher ceiling. Although…if someone like Curry fell into their lap in the 2nd, does Tapp now become despensable?

    • Davesbeard

      Tapp has played really well when not injured and add’s a veteran presence to our second DE unit/rotation.

      My take is that Graham and Hunt are a combo with a lot of potential but minimal track record, Tapp balances that as both solid and experienced.

      • JRO91

        If Graham/Hunt play to their potential, we could have a potentially lethal set of DE’s across the board. It seems like Hunt was just starting to “get it” at the end of last year. With a full offseason to get stronger and work with Washburn, he could be a real steal. I think Graham understands that it’s do or die for him this year. He needs to show the ability he had at Michigan. 2 years removed from his knee…no excuses anymore. Brace it up, and forget about it. Play like it never happend.

        • JRO91

          BTW…I would still like to add Curry if he’s there. Looks like the second coming of Cole.

      • GeorgeFleep

        please tapp way overated just because he is consistent (for the most part does not mean he should stay or draft another DE. Im expecting his production to drop drastically because of young talent doing so much better. think about it washburn is coaching up 2 new young players, hunt and graham. he should be able to do wonders.

    • Eric Weaver

      The reality is, though, that despite how much we like these players, probably at least half of them will end up being mediocre to average if history proves right.

  • wee2424

    I can easily see them taking Tannehill if he falls, but I can’t imagine us moving up a lot to grab him.

  • wee2424

    Oh, and I love the Spy Gane analogy. I wish I was that quick witted in H.S, with some if my essays.

  • Arby1

    decoder ring broken. so I busted out the old ouija board. Let’s see now: T………..R………..E…………N – WHAT?! NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

    • TommyLawlor

      Captain Howdy, do you think my mom is pretty?

  • GeorgeFleep

    so its official if tannehill and kuechly and cox are on the board the eagles take brackett. what a relief i knew he eagles would do the right thing

    • GeorgeFleep

      i was trying to be witty and sarcastic but instead im just stupid. TE brett brackett is already on the team. I guess it is too early for me to comment online. Do you think when spud says stuff like the eagles are high on stanley havilli or a sleeper brackett, would it just be interest to see what they do during training camp or actual anticipation they can play? Could brackett be the chess piece player that is in the slot wr for redzone and regular TE in open field? Very interesting chess piece player. So is it a possibilty D.J Jones starts LT opening day at all right now. How much of a camp body is he?

  • JRO91

    Walterfootball updated his mock….1st – Fletcher Cox, but in the second he has the Eagles passing on both Curry and Boykin for Zach Brown and Sanu. I would love to add Sanu, but if Curry makes it to either 2nd, I can’t see the Eagles passing on him. He is taylor made for the wide 9. Boykin would be a “makes sense” pick, but I wouldnt be upset if they took Sanu. He would be a nice compliment to Machlin and Desean. Move Avant to 4 and Riley to 5.

  • nopain23

    Tommy
    Most mocks have tannehil,kuechly and cox gone by 15.if the iggles trade back to 20′s is that too high for lavonte david?…I’m really impressed by his game tape…and the tape is the TRUTH……I actually like him more than V.curry……and I think we need help at LB more than DE..

  • Donald Kalinowski

    Have you thought of the possibility that the Eagles might project King Dunlap at LT for the whole year? The options are very limited. McNeil has injury issues and Bell wants a long term contract. The draft doesn’t offer much help. Based on the way the Eagles run things, I think they will draft a guy in the 3rd-4th round to be the backup to Dunlap.

  • Donald Kalinowski

    Last year Peter King reported that the Eagles would draft Danny Watkins. People thought it was a smokescreen because they couldn’t fathom why a team would invest a 1st round draft pick in a 27 year old OT who is raw to the game and would only be a OG in the future.

    • GermanEagle

      Damn you, why did you have to bring up that Watkins is already 27?! That just ruined my day…

      • Donald Kalinowski

        umm. He’s turning 28 in a few months. He’s actually older than Lebron James.

        • GermanEagle

          I know. But I didn’t want to be reminded again!! ;)

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

    Tommy,

    Love the story about Mangini. Must be an awful feeling to be exploited like that.

    I’ve got a draft scenario-question for you. If no trade partner knocks on our door at #15 and the following happens – what do we do?

    Cox (Carolina), Kuechly (Seahwaks) and Tannehill (Miami) is all gone, which I sadly think is very possible, who would you pick?

    Our offense is set, and you don’t want the 1st round pick to be depth (which leaves out Wright, Floyd, DeCastro, etc.). No TE or QB is worth #15. You don’t want to draft a LT who will be benched next year when Jason Peters returns.

    On defense, there is only room for an impact player at DT, WLB, SLB and slot CB (plays around 60% of def. snaps according to Greg Cosell).

    There is not a WLB worthy of #15. Brockers (doesn’t fit our scheme) and Poe (no production) leaves Worthy and Still as the only DTs with a first round grade on my board. However they are reaches at #15. Neither Gilmore, Kirkpatrick or Jenkins is slot CB players.

    IF, and I know it’s a big if, this happens, don’t you just have to draft BPA? The question then becomes: who is the BPA at this point. It could very well be DeCastro, Floyd or Perry.

    • Donald Kalinowski

      I would take DeCastro. I heard he has the potential to be one the best guards in the NFL.

      My fear is that Ingram, Cox, Kuechly, Coples, Rieff, DeCastro, Floyd and Tanenhill will all be unavailable after pick 14. Then who do you pick if you can’t find a trade partner? Martin has his issues, Poe is too much of a risk, and we’ve already invested enough at the CB position to draft Kitpatrick or Gilmore with our 1st pick.

    • TommyLawlor

      Who is Perry…Nick Perry?

      Can’t take DeCastro unless you think he can play C or RT or you think Watkins was a major mistake. And even with C…I think the Eagles love Jason Kelce so that may make the C angle moot.

      You know my feelings on WR.

      No to Nick Perry.

      I’d rather go for Whitney Mercilus.

      I think you’re too dismissive with “no one is willing to trade up”. Teams always want to move up. Question is price. If we don’t have good options at 15, we’re a motivated seller and will take a lesser deal to move back.

      • dislikedisqus

        Can you evaluate Mercilus v Upshaw? Upshaw seems like a decent DE at 272

  • Mark823

    I doubt Tannehill will fall past the Dolphins. They really need to add a QB. I don’t think the Eagles would trade either but you never know.

    • dislikedisqus

      Agree. They’d have to hate him to let him go by.

  • GermanEagle

    Re-signing Landri makes even more sense now after JP is out for the year.

    Not only is Landri one of the greatest DT’s to ever play the game, but also keeping him would make the Eagles more flexible on draft day, i.e. we wouldn’t necessarily have to draft a DT at all.

    I wouldn’t mind going into the season with Patt – CuJo – Dixon – Landri – Thornton at all, but I will have a problem if the Eagles go into the season with Dunlap as the starter and a 5th round pick being his backup…

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

      I thought you were going to say that Landri was going to be our new swing tackle, because he’s just that fucking amazing.

      • D3FB

        No but we are going to go straight Frankenstein and sew him and Rolle together to create the ultimate player. We will then clone him 52 times and cut everyone.

  • shahrod hemassi

    hey tommy….would there be any chance that the vikings would trade down from #3 for our #15 plus jason peters? they would take the risk on peters but it’s a decent move on their part. we could also add a conditional 2013 pick that would vary between the 2nd & 4th round depending on if/when Peters returns and how he performs. if the vikings would do that, should the eagles do it?

    personally, i think this would be my #1 preference to explore. my #2 preference would be to take fletcher cox at #15 if he’s available and hope that mudd can do a patch job at LT until peters can return off the PUP. my #3 preference would be to trade down a few picks and take DeCastro or Glenn and plug him at LG and try Mathis at LT.

  • IowaEagle

    Tommy: Did you have a chance to watch much of Case Keenum? I could see him being a late round target even though the Eagles haven’t been linked to him at all.

  • Skeptic_Eagle

    Wow! that’s great! I like Mathieu as a safety a lot. Actually reminds me of Bob Sanders in the way he plays with reckless abandon. Hopefully, unlike Bob Sanders, it doesn’t mean he’ll have a truncated but brilliant NFL career. His size makes me think he can’t be a first rounder, but it’s way too early to project that. Mathieu’s the kind of guy that’s bucked expectation and projection to get where he is; a hard guy to bet against.

    I’ve said before that Zach Brown reminds me a lot of Keenan Clayton. Totally lost in the miasma of bodies that an OLB has to be comfortable operating in. We’ve already got our tweener coverage-savant LB project, why take another?

    The more I watch of Cam Johnson, the more I like. Doesn’t remind me of Trent Cole coming out of Cincy, but does remind me of who Trent Cole is now. Supposedly he’s got sickle-cell anemia, which is why his snaps were limited…think this removes him from the Eagles draft board, or do you think they might see value in being able to add a skilled edge rusher that can be managed within the rotational defensive line philosophy Washburn employs? I think he’s a late 2nd/Early 3rd talent between the white lines, but will he be devalued by his snap limitations?

  • ian_no_2

    Andy is near the top at evaluating and developing QBs, for all of the rest that comes with the Andy package. When Kolb was picked he didn’t think about Quinn despite all the media buzz that he was a Top 5 pick, and rolled his eyes when asked about trading up for him. Kolb was actually the best QB in the draft that year (with Trent Edwards second) despite his struggles in ’11. If you draft Tannehill at 15, there will be pressure to move Vick in ’13 and start RT. As I’ve said a few times I think Tannehill is a huge reach and a likely bust, ditto Floyd. I think Luck and rg3 are justified in their hype, Weeden will be good for a few years, and R. Wilson could surprise, and that’s it for the 2012 QB class. Cousins is too much like Kafka, but a solid backup.

  • http://twitter.com/rollo_e Raul Estrada

    I seriously think that the Eagles will go in and get an LT from the draft in the latter rounds as the backup to Dunlap and use a LT-by-committee approach….And it may work. There may be some athletic OTs in the draft coachable enough by Mudd’s standards.

  • dislikedisqus

    Hey, what do you think of Greg Cosell’s column about treating slot receivers and slot corners as a separate position and recognizing that they are on the field for 30-50% of the game and you should draft people who have skills for that particular position higher than if you think of them as general WRs or general CBs?