Let There Be Speculation

Posted: March 17th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 61 Comments »

Longtime reader eagles nut threw out a rumor tonight about the Colts making a trade for WR Jeremy Maclin.  Then Jim Irsay started tweeting about the team possibly making a big deal.

“In Arizona,but the phone lines burning up…we want to win so damn bad our toes ache and our brains are gurgling!!!!!!!”

“Colt Fans,hint—— it’s a Wide Receiver!!”

“Everyone stand buy,pour strong drink…do ur voodoo,Colts need the strength of it’s nation to get this wopper in the boat! DO U UNDERSTAND!?”

That last tweet makes you think it could be a major star, but what elite WRs are available?  Could this be a deal for Victor Cruz?  Would the Chiefs trade Dwayne Bowe?  Is Kenny Britt someone you trade for?

Is there any way this could be Jeremy Maclin?

I’m hesitant to think the Eagles would deal Maclin.  He won’t turn 25 until May.  He’s already got 258 catches and 26 TDs.  He is a high character guy that has played well, but still has room to get better.  Organizations don’t like to trade players like that.  It looks bad.

The addition of Chip Kelly does change things.  He’s never coached Maclin.  From the outside, Mac doesn’t seem to be his type of WR.  Kelly demands that his guys block.  He wants tough players.  Mac was an atrocious blocker last year.  His toughness is an issue.  Mac goes down way too easy, thus earning the name “Self-tacklin’ Jeremy Maclin” from Jimmy Bama.

There is also the angle of Mac’s contract status and future.  He’s entering the final year of his deal.  Will the Eagles pay him big bucks?  Are the Eagles interested in keeping him long term?  I do think Chip Kelly would be interested in trying to see what he could do with Mac.  Let’s not forget just how great he was in college.  Mac has only shown glimpses of that player in the NFL.  I think he can get better, but he needs a coach to really push him.  Reid didn’t push enough.  Chip would.  That would make or break Mac.  Is it worth the risk to keep him?  It is also risky to deal him.

The Colts need weapons for Andrew Luck.  Mac does fit that offense.  He runs good routes.  He has good hands.  The deal would make some sense on the part of both teams.

What would be the compensation?  Tricky question.  Maybe a late 2nd or early 3rd.  Maybe a combination of picks from this year and next year, with performance clauses factoring in.

Doubt this is what Irsay is talking about, but this has already been a wild offseason around the NFL.  You never know.

* * * * *

Jake Long is back talking to the Dolphins.

Nnamdi is talking to the Saints.  He’s never made the playoffs.  Rob Ryan is the DC and has never been on a winning team.  This is the ultimate test for Sean Payton and Drew Brees.


  • The same guy teased fans with guys that were less well known than all of the Eagles signings.

    I enjoy Jim Irsay, but he’s a good example of why monarchies are not a popular system of government.

    • I think we can all be grateful that we do not have an owner who drunk-tweets.

      • Arby1

        LUV THOSE CAPS!!!

  • laeagle

    Maybe they’re making a push for Danario Alexander. If I were a Colts fan, I’d probably be more excited by that, honestly.

    • TommyLawlor

      Terrific player, but totally unreliable. I think he’s had 5 knee operations.

      • grn_mtn_phan

        Just havin a bit of fun with this because I’m just having a hard time seeing it happen (not that I’d be devastated in the least) but hypothetically Tommy, if it was to pull a Huggy Bear and “It was goin down” who would then be on your wish list(s) come Draft Day?? My favoritest day of the offseason!!

  • TommyLawlor

    Other aspect here is that GM Ryan Grigson was part of the staff that scouted and drafted Maclin here in Philly.

    • James

      Ahh, had not thought about that, good point!

    • Jason Avant maybe?…. or maybe talking to chargers for Danario Alexander…why would eagles nut just guess that …did he guess it first or after reading that

  • I think the Chip Kelly no-huddle spread offense could opened a wide for Maclin to burst through. Maclin has stagnated the last couple of years, but he is still young. He was one of the players I was most excited about with regards to the coaching change. I would hate to sell low before Chip and Maclin get a chance together.

    Best case scenario in my mind is Maclin takes to the new offense and gets resigned early in the season.

    • TommyLawlor

      I certainly agree that Mac has upside. Said that above. Comes down to whether the coach wants him or there is some alternative plan.

      • If Kelly can see the positives with Vick, I think he will see them with Maclin. His warts are relatively benign. Unless Kelly is going, “I can’t be productive with this guy,” I don’t foresee a trade. And I don’t think he feels that way about Maclin. As you alluded to above, there is some personal pride involved. I think Kelly wants this “challenge” (minor as it may be).

  • James

    Its so quite on the rumor mill… Any thoughts about possibly signing Alan Branch or Eric Winston?

    • TommyLawlor

      I don’t see Branch as a target. Seems like OT is still possible, but not sure Winston is a target.

      • Tackle market hasn’t settled yet… who knows, a guy like Winston could be reasonably priced once it does. He’s a little older but seems a good fit otherwise.

      • austinfan

        Davis had Branch in Arizona where he couldn’t beat out Bryan Robinson at NT, if he wanted him, I suspect he’d already be an Eagle.

  • SteveH

    I can definitely live with seeing Maclin go. I actually was advocating it at the end of the season. I don’t think he’s ever going to become a star level reciever, and he’s a liability in some parts of the game, so I say lets go get what we can for him and move on.

    • Perhaps he does better as a Z receiver somewhere than he does as an X receiver in Philly.

  • Maclin isn’t untouchable… but I don’t think you deal him just to deal him. Indy doesn’t own their 2nd round pick, I think they dealt it for Vontae Davis.

    • TommyLawlor

      So what if Indy offered you their 2014 1st rounder? Or their 3rd this year and a 2nd next year? Teams can get creative.

      • Arby1

        I was thinking next year’s first too. We have to get another 1st somehow if we wanna be in the qb sweepstakes next year. Do we just trade our 2nd rounder??

      • deg0ey

        What about Maclin + #35 for #24 + #88?

        Gives the Eagles an extra pick in the top-100 but means that Indy don’t have to give up a pick next year as well.

      • Sometimes the valuation process really confuses me. Is a 3rd this year and a 2nd next year worth more than a highly productive, but non-star receiver? Doesn’t compute for me!

  • ian_no_2

    I think it makes sense to deal him if you don’t feel like giving him a big contract, and I’m not too into that. I’d like to see them lock up Brandon Graham, not Maclin. Maclin is the kind of receiver that can put on a show in his walk year, and then make some team pay down the road for lesser campaigns.

  • JulzPE

    Wouldn’t take anything Jim Irsay says on Twitter seriously. Guy is crazy.

    • TommyLawlor

      You think the man who wrote this is crazy:

      “I’m looking for Walter,he has The Ringer…the whites…the undies…lotta ins and outs to this thing…THIS IS A LEAGUE GAME,SMOKEY!!!!”

      I must profoundly disagree. Seems ultra-normal.

  • D-von

    Idk, have hard time believing Kelly would let go some of the team’s core players before seeing them on the practice field. Its still quite possible though

  • grn_mtn_phan

    I know it’s an unlikely scenerio, but if it did happen, who with more height and not seemingly destined for the slot as a result, has Tavon Austin’s high drool factor speed? Just curious. I need some draft mags!!

    • TommyLawlor

      Tavon is a player I’m sure the Eagles would love to get. Isn’t likely to go #4 and isn’t likely to make it past pick 20 or so.

  • eagleizeit

    Maybe trade Mac for SLB Jerry Hughes. Was looking over Colts roster and remembered Howie saying we wouldn’t use the LB from Houston we picked up to play that position. We don’t really have anyone with experience there, Jerry’s an improving back up who also only has 1 yr left on his rookie contract. I’d really like it if we got TE Fleener though.

  • eagleizeit

    Maybe we could then trade DE Cole, and our 2 young DE’s to a 4-3 DE desperate team for a Kelly type WR & a 2nd rd pick.

  • D-von

    One player I would trade is Nate Allen. Guy got benched twice in the last 2 seasons and is so inconsistent. You can complain about Coleman but at least he is more technically sound than Allen.

    • Being technically sound isn’t worth much when you aren’t physically capable of being a starting safety in the NFL

    • D3Keith

      No offense, but what would be the point? It wouldn’t be unlike Tampa Bay getting rid of Benn, a former second-round pick who’s got the tools but has underwhelmed, for a late pick rather than cutting the guy outright.

      Nate’s young and with enough potential that I’d rather give him one more shot than have a sixth-round pick.

  • GermanEagle

    Should the Eagles really trade away Maclin, Tavon Austin becomes my favourite target in round 1!

    • TommyLawlor

      He is a player that would be oh so fun to watch in Eagles green.

  • I never watched him in college, but he has never impressed me in the NFL. Maclin is clearly the biggest pussy on the entire team – I have never seen any of the other WRs tackle themselves in the red zone. Not even Pinkston would do that – the last player to hold the “pussy” crown. Like it was with Pinkston, until Maclin goes, out WR corp is simply not up to NFL par – Desean is already half of a wide Receiver due to his size…do we really need another half receiver but due to courage and confidence? Get a 3rd rounder for him and I would be STOKED!

  • Eric Weaver

    Perhaps it’s Larry Fitzgerald?

    • dislikedisqus

      He fits the “wopper” definition a lot better than Maclin. I doubt an owner with a brain would pump his fans up by calling a WR a “woper” and then deliver a Maclin. I suspect it’s someone more prominent. Makes sense for AZ who had no offense to rebuild by getting several picks for Fitzgerald.

  • DanJ3645

    I think this could be a good trade for both teams – obviously if the appropriate picks can be agreed.
    Pros for the Colts:
    Young WR who could grow with Luck.
    Reggie Wayne is nearing the end of his career – they need to groom a replacement.
    Mac has never had a top line WR to mentor him – Wayne could do this.
    Plenty of cap room to sign Mac to an extention this year.
    Grigson would provide full scouting report.
    Colts probably moving to a WCO style offence with Pep Hamilton joining as OC.
    From the Eagles point of view:
    Mac isn’t a great fit for a run first O that requires WRs to block at a good level, especially as DJax is starting on the other side.
    CK could see a replacement already on the team – Cooper. Again not saying he is better than Mac, but could be seen to be better in this situation.
    Uncertainty at the QB position – next year we are could well be looking to trade up to get a top QB prospect. We need to get extra draft picks to support this.

  • This is eaglesnut. I had read the initial Irsay tweet about working on a deal for 5 days. I guessed it was Maclin before it being indicated anywhere that IND was after a WR. Just a wild stab in the dark. Not really a rumor as I have no inside info.

    • TommyLawlor

      Made for an interesting discussion.

  • A_T_G

    I get why people think Mac might not fit, but why does everyone assume the Colts want to pair him with Luck? I’m picturing a three way trade where the Colts get Mac, the Vikings get Cole and Allen, we get Luck, and the Vikings send Joe Webb to the Colts. Seems pretty likely, really, now that I wrote it out.

    • TommyLawlor

      Joe Webb is undefeated on Tuesday nights. Andrew Luck isn’t even good enough to play on a Tuesday. You sold me.

      • Arby1

        You don’t want to run into Joe Webb just when you’ve built up a head of steam and think you’re unstoppable…

  • Found this picture of Mac on the White River in Indi — looks like a done deal. http://goo.gl/6lpTm

  • xeynon

    Count me as against dealing Maclin. Think of it this way – are we likely to get someone better with a second round pick? Maclin has the physical talent to be a complete receiver. He can block and be physical enough in the passing game when he sets his mind to it. He just appears to have a tendency to lose his mental focus and/or coast to avoid the physical part of the game. I tend to think that the right coach could bring out the best in him and I want to see what he does in Kelly’s offense before we give up on him (he was great in a spread offense at Missouri).

    If we were going to trade a receiver, it should be DeSean. He’s a great deep threat, but extremely one dimensional, and unlike Maclin he doesn’t have the ability to round out his game due to his physical limitations. Truthfully I’d prefer to hold onto both of them, though.

    • D3Keith

      I hate when I write a post, then someone has said my thoughts, only more clear and concise, in a post I read afterward.

  • Hey Tommy,Question about Mike Vick,How will his being left handed affect Chip Kellys ability to install whatever version of his read option he does eventually install

  • Zach

    If Harvin nets you a first round pick in this draft, then so should Maclin. Trading him for seconds and thirds is ridiculous.

  • A couple of people touched on this below, but Mac is one of a number of guys on the roster that I hesitate to judge based on the last couple of years, and who I’m excited to see work with the new coaching staff.

    No, he hasn’t reached 1,000 yards in a season. No, he hasn’t made a Pro Bowl. Yes, his blocking has left a lot to be desired.

    But I think he’s a guy who got sick of Vick throwing him (literally) into positions where he was in danger of having his head taken off. And like most receivers in the league, he needs (see; wants) touches in order to feel like he’s part of the offense, which in turn I’d guess would make him a much more willing blocker.

    He’s just too talented to get rid of before seeing how he does with increased competition and Kelly’s coaching.

  • GermanEagle

    I agree with Zach.

    There is no way the Eagles should take anything less than the 1st round pick from the Colts. Especially since they don’t have a second rounder in this year’s draft and the #86 OVR won’t cut it.

  • Could it be Desean Jackson? If Austin is a target, those two don’t seem to fit together in Chips offense.

    • A_T_G

      That would be more of a whopper. I would be surprised after we finally got him onto a fairly reasonable contract that makes him happy, but I have been surprised before.

  • austinfan

    If you look at the way Chip used WRs in Oregon, Maclin is traded.

    Chip usually had one primary target (Maehl was the guy), a good hands/average speed guy who caught a lot of passes underneath. But as Chip said, if you don’t run block, you don’t play. If you want to get rid of the ball quickly and not take sacks, something Chip stresses, you need someone who gets open quickly, snatches the ball in a crowd, and can power their way into YAC. Sound like Maclin?

    So he’s got a roster with Cooper, Avant, Benn, McNutt, Cunningham and Salas, hmmm, see a trend here? DeSean is the quick tinker toy he likes, who can return kicks, what does Maclin do? He’s a smooth intermediate route runner for a pass oriented offense that likes to throw down field. And he’s on the last year of his contract – somehow unless he goes “mad dog” as a run blocker I don’t see him returning for serious money in 2014.

    • D3Keith

      All valid points. But wouldn’t it be easier to try to teach Maclin to pass block, or go hard-line (you don’t block, you don’t play), or just use him in a way that masks that deficiency best we can than it would be to try to add someone of his caliber with whatever draft pick we get for him?

      I agree with the consensus that he’s not untouchable, but for a third- or fourth-most dangerous player on an offense, he’s pretty good. I’d prefer to keep him, especially in light of the FA moves.

      • austinfan

        Everything comes down to the schemes Chip wants to run. If he’s going to spread the ball around and run almost 50%, even if he runs 10% more plays (72 v 65 a game) than most teams, how often will he pass – he ran 60-65% of the time at Oregon. And then how will those throws be allocated – Chip tended to spread it around to 1 main WR, 1 TE and 1 RB, but also get it to 4 or 5 other WRs and maybe another TE and RB. In the pros he’ll pass more and have fewer targets, but if he’s running a lot of spread and two TE, one back, he may throw to 4 WRs, 2 TEs and 2 RBs. What’s the value of your #2 WR in that case?

        • D3Keith

          We could do this all day. Chip is a matchups guy as well, and when your corners, safeties and LBs have to account for Jackson, Casey, Celek, McCoy and Maclin instead of, say, McNutt, there’s a mismatch to be found.

          I’m in favor of the more-running approach, and if we are convinced that Maclin has maxed out and would walk or be let go after this year, then be proactive and get something for him. But I think Maclin can be a valuable weapon. Even in a run-heavy, two-TE offense, you’re going to need a No. 2 WR that can get open and make plays. I hate to be sitting here midseason watching Jackson get blanketed and watching safeties deal with Casey and Celek and wishing we had one more guy that could do damage in the passing game.

          We’ll see how it turns out for ol’ Self-Tacklin

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