Geoff Mosher reported on Twitter that the Eagles are talking to QB Dennis Dixon about joining the team. Dixon was on the Ravens practice squad. As soon as the Super Bowl was over, he was free to sign a “futures contract” with any team. Here is Mosher’s full column on the negotiations.
So what’s the deal with Dixon?
Don’t over-read this. Dixon would come here to be part of the QB depth chart, but not anything more than that. Is it possible that he could come here and magically thrive in Chip Kelly’s offense and prove to be a great find? Possible, but very, very unlikely. Check out his game logs to see just how little he’s played in the NFL. He’s been in the league for 5 years and has thrown a total of 59 passes. Chances are…that’s for a reason.
The argument for his success is that some QBs have sat for a while before blossoming. Tony Romo didn’t play for 2 years. In his first year on the active roster, he was just a holder. It wasn’t until his fourth season in the league that he got on the field as a QB. Romo had played well in the preseason so it isn’t as if he came out of the blue. Dallas was developing him slowly. Brad Johnson was drafted in 1992. He didn’t get on the field until 1994 and didn’t start a game until 1996, when he was age 28.
Dixon just turned 28 last month, which means he’s almost as old as guys like Mike Patterson and Danny Watkins. Crazy, huh. Dixon should have a lot of tread left on the tire. Dixon has spent time in Pittsburgh and Baltimore. Those are good organizations. The fact that Dixon is still spending time on a practice squad at age 28 tells you he is willing to work hard to make it.
Here are some quick pre-draft notes I had on Dixon:
Tall, mobile guy. Elusive on the run or in the pocket. Has pretty good downfield vision. Can be accurate downfield. Executes fakes very well. Accurate on intermediate throws. Sort of flicks the ball, but is on time and on target. Poor man’s Vince Young. Must get his feet set to have any power. Tore his ACL late in the season. Was arguably the front runner for the Heisman at the time.
I didn’t spend a lot of time writing about him due to the ACL tear. I figured that would kill his value. Prior to the injury, I thought he had a shot to go in the 3rd round or possibly even the late 2nd.
I haven’t studied Dixon’s NFL career super-closely so I don’t know why he’s struggled to find a spot. We can talk about a crowded roster or how he’s not been a good fit, but the most basic possibility is that he just wasn’t good enough. NFL teams normally find a way to work in a QB that flashes big time talent.
If Dixon does get signed, most likely he’s coming here to simply challenge for a backup role. There is no guarantee he even makes the roster. He does know Chip Kelly and he does have the skill set that Kelly loves in a QB. Dixon only played one season for Kelly at Oregon and that was when Chip was just the Offensive Coordinator. However, Dixon goes back to Oregon on a regular basis and he and Kelly are friendly. Dixon has remained somewhat close to the Oregon program.
It isn’t a lock that Dixon comes to Philly. Bruce Arians is now the HC in Arizona. Arians coached Dixon in Pittsburgh and oversaw Dixon’s only NFL start. Dixon might actually be closer to Arians than he is Kelly. The fact that Dixon is talking to the Eagles already makes me think he has genuine interest in coming here and trying to get back to the glorious form he had in his final season at Oregon, no matter how great a long shot that truly is.
Here’s a good video to show you just how good he was back then. He completed 68 percent of his passes. 20 TDs, 4 INTs. Averaged 5.6 yards per carry and ran for 9 TDs in just 9 games. Oregon averaged 43 points per game and went 8-1 in those games.
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So what’s up with the DC timeline? No rumors yet?
The Ravens just held their Super Bowl parade today. You’d want the coach to spend the day celebrating with his team and clearing his head to come give you his best interview in the next couple of days.
The Niners didn’t get home from New Orleans until sometime early Monday. Flying west to east is not fun and you’d want the coach to have a day or so to relax, clear his head, and then head back east for the interview.
The fact we’ve heard nothing isn’t a surprise. I think Wednesday we should hear some rumors about guys coming in for a visit or something like that. If we don’t, then maybe we are in fact waiting for a college coach. There is a report on Twitter tonight that the Saints will interview Georgia’s Todd Grantham on Thursday.
The key here is that Wednesday is national signing day, the day when recruits sign a letter of intent to say which college they’re headed to. Reportedly multiple NFL teams are waiting to make coaching announcements until after Wednesday, so as not to hurt recruiting for the schools the coaches currently work for. I’m not real fond of this, but that’s the ugly side of football.
I don’t have a good feel for this situation and who we’re going to hire. The longer it goes with no new NFL rumors, the more I think it might be a college coach.
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Gimpy posted a new MAQB column where he took a look back at the Super Bowl. Check out his thoughts. He has a great stat in regard to Joe Flacco and Peyton Manning. Really blew my mind.