A Smart Risk

Posted: January 25th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 56 Comments »

Howie Roseman, Doug Pederson and the Eagles took a chance last year when they moved up and drafted Carson Wentz. First, they paid a lot to move up to the #2 overall pick. Putting a lot of resources into one player is risky. What if he’s not that good? What if he’s great, but gets hurt? What if he’s good, but doesn’t have the right players around him?

The second part of the risk was going up for a player from a small school and one who didn’t have 3 or 4 years of starting experience. Wentz started for 2 years, but missed time as a Senior due to injury. The Eagles didn’t have 40 starts to study. They didn’t see him throw 1,000 passes or 100 TDs.

At this point, it looks like the move was brilliant.

Roseman mentioned that the Eagles looked at the QBs in college and felt the next year or two (2017 and 2018 draft classes) might not be that good. 2017 is a bad year for QBs. We’ll have to wait and see about next year. If the Eagles had passed on Wentz, they would be reaching for a QB in the middle of the 1st round this year or trying to get Jimmy Garropalo from the Pats, which wouldn’t be cheap. Wentz is the best of all these options.

Wentz also seems like the right guy to build around. Based on what I’m hearing in Mobile, Wentz proved to be a far better choice than Jared Goff in terms of being a leader and someone that other players believe in. I can’t tell you how important that is. QB is the most important position in all of sports.

Go back 25 years. Randall Cunningham and his defensive teammates had a love/hate relationship. The players loved his talent, but were frustrated by his ego and his lack of complete commitment to working off the field. Cunningham wanted to be a star. Gang Green wanted to win a Super Bowl. That sometimes turbulent relationship hurt the team.

Early in his career, Donovan McNabb was a charismatic leader and his teammates believed in him. That helped the Eagles to have a great run from 2000-2004. The TO situation changed all of that in a bad way and things never really got back to where they were.

Wentz has the physical ability to be a top QB. Just as important, he is all about the team. He wants to win and will do anything he can. He didn’t complain about poor WR play this year. He didn’t gripe when Jason Kelce had a bad snap. Wentz took the blame and said all the right things. That’s part of how you get your teammates to love you. The leader of the team needs to say the right things and do the right things.

Time will tell whether Wentz becomes a star QB and is able to get the Eagles back to being a serious title contender, but so far he’s off to a good start and it looks like the Eagles made a great move to go get him.


Jimmy Bama has a post up on the Eagles and potential roster cuts. He mentions the possibility of the Eagles cutting:

DE Connor Barwin
OC Jason Kelce
OL Allen Barbre
CB Leodis McKelvin
RB Ryan Mathews
LB Mychal Kendricks
CB Ron Brooks

If that happens.

Add it all up, and you get $24,250,000 in added cap space if the Eagles moved on from all of the above players.

Jimmy gives the specific numbers and rationale behind the moves go read his piece.

That would be a lot of money for the Eagles and would give them in the neighborhood of $30M to spend. That pales in comparison to some teams that have well over $50M in cap room.

Ideally, the Eagles would be able to trade Kelce and Kendricks and get something in return. Kelce was just named to the Pro Bowl and is still talented. Kendricks is the third LB in a system that generally goes with 2 guys because they play so much Nickel D. Kendricks could start for plenty of teams and is also a talented player.

Barwin could interest 3-4 teams, but due to his age and price, teams may just wait for the Eagles to cut him. It is possible that some team will value his leadership and off-field stuff enough to give up a pick for him, but I’m guessing that’s not likely.

I am all for the cuts if that means the Eagles have the ability to bring back Bennie Logan. They could also make one or two other key moves, but don’t expect a super busy free agent period.


56 Comments on “A Smart Risk”

  1. 1 A Smart Risk - said at 10:59 AM on January 25th, 2017:

    […] Tommy Lawlor Howie Roseman, Doug Pederson and the Eagles took a chance last year when they moved up and drafted […]

  2. 2 ChoTime said at 11:45 AM on January 25th, 2017:

    Wow, if they really cut those players, that would be carving a huge hole in this team. Not that any of them are great, but it’s not so easy to replace an even average guy.

  3. 3 Ark87 said at 12:20 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Agreed, at some point in the rebuilding process, you have to stop the wholesale destruction of your roster and start building. If you can get compensation for them, by all means. But we just have too tall of an order to fill in 1 off season to become competitive without cutting more holes into our depth chart. And I don’t feel like putting Wentz behind a further depleted O-line while we wait for a team to sprout up around him.

    Also concerning Wentz, we need to get him a team so we can fairly evaluate him. If he struggles for the next 2 seasons, we can’t act on that if we’ve got a “yeah but he doesn’t have an O-line or weapons”

  4. 4 Will Defence Win Championship said at 12:28 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Would disagree with cutting Allen Barbre and would add Jason Peters to the cut list for savings. JP at 35 is getting long in the tooth yet he did have a wonderful run this season and stayed healthy.

  5. 5 scratcherk said at 12:39 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Makes sense that the Eagles are freeing up space. The worst thing to do is go into the draft with glaring needs like we have at CB, WR, DE. Fill out the needs and then go pure BPA. It’s really the only way to do it and I’m sure Howie intends on doing that.

  6. 6 A_T_G said at 1:03 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    As long as it doesn’t amount to trading our current holes and current guys for new holes and mercenaries, yes.

    Looking at the list, though, I think they are reasonable.

  7. 7 miked718 said at 12:42 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    What are everyone’s thoughts on Pryor?? I did not catch any Browns games but according to my fantasy championship squad, he’s a stud. It’s not like he was playing opposite a stud RB or WR or had anything anyone would even call a QB throwing him passes. I know he’ll be expensive but would he be better than Alshon or DJax?

  8. 8 miked718 said at 12:43 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Correction, saw Browns/Birds don’t remember Pryor being a factor if he was even playing WR

  9. 9 A_T_G said at 1:00 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    He was playing, and he caught a bomb. It is excusable, though. A lot of guys caught bombs against us this year.

    I think he has potential, but is a risk because of his recent move to the position. I think he is younger than DJax and suspension-free over Alshon, but less accomplished than either.

    I also read that he will be franchised. I don’t think he is worth that much, but CLE has more money than players to spend in on, so…

  10. 10 Ark87 said at 3:44 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    I saw 3 games, all of them he had a version of that catch. The ball is badly under thrown, locates the ball, adjusts by stopping dead and throws off coverage (in our case, double coverage). It’s a great skills he’s demonstrated on multiple occasions, not sure if he can make a career off of it.

  11. 11 Tumtum said at 2:21 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Has top 10 WR talent. Top 10 dick-head too. Don’t want anything to do with him.

  12. 12 Fufina said at 2:37 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Thing is we have a dickhead free locker room. Chip removed them all and outside of maybe a couple of the defensive additions in FA (Bradham you beachboy beating tool) we have not added any to the locker room.

    Think we can handle a diva WR, and while i know a lot of his ex-team mates dislike Pryor i have never really read much about why he is actually such a bad team mate, all of them are very general and i did not hear to much bad when he was QB with the Ravens, just since he has gone to the Browns… and I can understand being pissed off with that bunch of mercs (so many guys are just collecting paychecks)

    I mean he has been enough of a student of the game to be an elite college QB and then convert to being an NFL WR – that takes a hell of a lot of effort.

  13. 13 Gian GEAGLE said at 3:06 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Dont think cleveland will łet him get away

  14. 14 A_T_G said at 1:09 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    This makes me think of the comments from Howie that he realized in his time out of power that 10-6 isn’t good enough. Could we add a CB and WR and leave most of the rest alone and get to 10-6? Maybe.

  15. 15 Tumtum said at 2:19 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    I feel like Lurie started that mantra not long after the failed “Dream team”.

  16. 16 BobSmith77 said at 1:18 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    As great as ‘Gang Green’ was at times, they were underwhelming in the playoffs here.

    Yeah the reasons those Buddy Ryan teams lost in the playoffs was largely due to the offensive struggles including Cunningham.

    Still in ’89 a nobody RB for the Rams ran on them consistently (Greg Bell) & their OL controlled the line of scrimmage almost all game.

    In ’92, the Cowboys curbed-stomped them in Dallas and Emmitt Smith left tread marks all over most of their vaunted front 7.

  17. 17 BobSmith77 said at 1:21 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Investing tons of money in two DTs is crazy even if Logan is a very solid contributor. Eagles’ already made their big dollar investment in Cox and can’t afford to do the same again in Logan.

    One of the things that gets overlooked in the cap discussions is the two terrible contracts that Roseman gave out last year (Daniel and Curry) which certainly will are a drag and limit their flexibility a bit.

  18. 18 Tumtum said at 2:17 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Don’t give Ertz a pass mannnnnn.

  19. 19 Fufina said at 2:26 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    I am not sure Logan gets as much as some people think. Name me a 1 Tech that is paid at an elite level? League values elite NT’s (since they demand a double team pretty much every snap), and 3 Tech’s due to their ability to get to the QB and get internal pressure.

    1 Tech’s who play the run well and move the pocket in the passing game… not so much. Think even in the hyper salary market of 2017 you should be able to retain Logan for ~$45mil for 5 years, and i would probably do it.

  20. 20 Gian GEAGLE said at 3:04 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Agreed. Logan doesn’t have enough elite pass rush ability to come anywhere close to what Cox is making.
    Think logan remains in philly and it won’t cost anywhere close to as much as many people seem to think.
    When the hell has our Cap wizard EVER let a bennie logan caliber player who he drafted walk after his rookie contract? Like Never
    Think it’s funny that people act like we have so much talent that we have to let one of our best young players walk … Half the team would get cut before we łet Bennie walk.
    Even funnier that people think our Cap Genius hasn’t already put a plan in place for how he will keep Logan in philly.
    Doubt Logan is going anywhere

  21. 21 bubqr said at 1:06 PM on January 26th, 2017:

    I’m still a Curry believer – I think he can turn things around and can help our DL spice things up.

  22. 22 Will Defence Win Championship said at 1:28 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Terrelle Pryor is someone I’d hope the Eagles would consider to add to the WR corps next year… He did very well as a WR even though he is new to the position with great size and 4.4 40 speed…https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6FPzC1TvI8

  23. 23 GENETiC-FREAK said at 1:41 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Dont look like he leaving the Browns. Big cap space n sounds like its in the works.

  24. 24 Tumtum said at 2:16 PM on January 25th, 2017:



    No thanks.

  25. 25 Dave said at 3:56 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    That’s an eye opener. He seems like the Byron Maxwell of receivers.

  26. 26 GermanEagle said at 5:48 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Wrong man. Pryor will be a top 5 WR in two years time. He might be worth breaking the bank for. Despite the fact that the Browns will never let him leave.

  27. 27 Tumtum said at 1:04 PM on January 26th, 2017:

    The links don’t question his talent.

  28. 28 anon said at 11:21 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Talking about a guy that became a top 10WR after like 1-2 offseasons? The talent level there is crazy and he can catch.

  29. 29 Tumtum said at 1:05 PM on January 26th, 2017:

    Agree, he is a beast in terms of football. Horrible human being. I draw the line some where.

  30. 30 GENETiC-FREAK said at 1:44 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Thats just too much money invested in the DL vs the production they give. Roseman press conference weeks back sounded like Barwin n Logan are already gone. Like he was thanking them for theie service.

  31. 31 Tumtum said at 2:08 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Hard to keep up with the content Tommy!

  32. 32 Dave said at 3:54 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    That’s a good problem to have.

  33. 33 Gian GEAGLE said at 2:58 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    The other day I was thinking about how short McNabbs career was in Philly compared to a lot of franchise QBs drafted by other teams.

    Crazy that McNabb and BRady faced off in 2004 Super Bowl, McNabb was gone like 6 years later and Brady is still taking the Pats to the SUPERBOWL in 2017. This is especially odd because McNabb stopped scrambling early in his career and became a pocket QB, and he Wasnt soneone who was injured a lot, so it’s odd that he didn’t last much longer than he did

  34. 34 Koy: The Legend of Neckbeard said at 4:30 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Brady’s a freak or juiced or other. But agreed! McNabb’s rapid decline has always confused me. I guess some guys age differently. Given his play in Washington (and Minnesota — who can forget), it’s like he hit a wall.

  35. 35 Cafone said at 3:04 AM on January 26th, 2017:

    He got fat.

  36. 36 ChoTime said at 6:05 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    I don’t know G, he had that nasty-ass sports hernia in ’06 and then in ’07 he destroyed his knee just kind of running against the Titans. Had a bit of a bounce back in ’08 when we almost got to the NFC Championship again, but that was pretty much it for him.

  37. 37 ShadyCrockett said at 3:32 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Dumb Risk: Trading Eric Rowe 🙁

  38. 38 GermanEagle said at 5:46 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Geez Louise. Can we finally get over this silly Eric Rowe trade talk. What a travesty. Lol.

  39. 39 Cafone said at 3:03 AM on January 26th, 2017:

    After the Super Bowl when he gets destroyed by Atlanta the talk may die down.

  40. 40 tag1555 said at 3:41 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    I’ll admit I thought Goff was the better prospect going into the draft last year: much bigger resume to evaluate, played in a higher level conference, lots more experience, and no recent injury history. Drafting Wentz looked like a roll of the dice. Now, still early, but we may be looking at a Manning-Leaf type situation, if things keep going as they did. A lot could depend on how well the Rams and Eagles are able to stabilize their OLs and give their young QBs the protection they need. Goff didn’t get that last year, and we saw how Wentz went from worldbeater to inconsistent once Lane J. was suspended.

    That’s also why I don’t like the idea of releasing Peters, despite the reasons Jimmy gives in his post. Peters has been a rock at LOT; he’s older, so the inevitable falloff may happen quickly, but until that happens, no. I also don’t think the cap $ saved justifies cutting Brooks; the defense took a hit when he wasn’t there to play the slot WRs, and he seems to be one of the rare FA CBs who we actually evaluated correctly for a change. This assumes his recovery is on schedule – if he’s lost some of his speed, that would be a different situation.

  41. 41 Will Ft. Daft Punk said at 3:46 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    I had no idea who would be better overall. I just thought that the Goff threw a better ball than Wentz and more accurate

  42. 42 Dave said at 3:52 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    I wanted Wentz just because of his stature. Wentz was 1 inch taller and weighed 22 lbs more at the combine. Goff’s skinny build had me worried. Teddy Bridgewater is skinny as a rail, and he is the same weight as Goff and 2 inches shorter.

  43. 43 ChoTime said at 9:17 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    From the outside, Goff had pretty much all the evidence on his side, Wentz had that “potential” thing that usually gets people in trouble. Looking like the right call so far.

  44. 44 Mac said at 3:56 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    The play of the defense dropped after the Brooks injury. I absolutely want him back.

  45. 45 D3FB said at 3:57 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Correlation =/= Causation

  46. 46 Mac said at 3:58 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    True, but I don’t think we can draft 4 CBs this year.

  47. 47 D3FB said at 4:01 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    FA, Draft Pick, Draft Pick, Mills, Grymes/CJ/CFL dude

  48. 48 D3FB said at 4:02 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Brooks is not particularly good. If that means letting Mills or one of the depth guys play slot, I’m ok with that for the cap savings.

  49. 49 Mac said at 4:36 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Fair enough.

  50. 50 wee2424 said at 10:01 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    The D took a hit when Brooks left not due to his skill, but because it forced Jenkins into slot and Watkins on to the field. I would like to see what Mills can do in slot where he is a better fit.

  51. 51 Insomniac said at 7:19 PM on January 25th, 2017:


    that jam though

  52. 52 SteveH said at 7:32 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    He’s 5’10” so he clearly can’t play corner in this league.

    *looks at Janoris Jenkins and the Honey Badgers HWS*

    Well, nevermind then. And fuck you too right out of the league Brandon Boykin, nobody cares if you were one of the best gunners in the league.

  53. 53 GordonGekko said at 7:24 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Kelce could be traded for a late round pick. Barwin, depending on if any money is owed in March/April would be cut than since no one will give anything knowing that. Depending on Kendricks contract, he could be moved on draft day

  54. 54 Fufina said at 8:15 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    Barwin could have value to a 3-4 team. I cannot understate how big free agent contracts are going to be in this free agency. A reliable team vet player who is good in coverage and setting the edge and can be an effective pass rusher – especially when blocked by TE’s could actually be valuable to a team at $7.75mil with no guarantees as a bridge player for a team changing scheme or just needing some vet leadership.

    Not sure what scheme Cleveland is playing next year – but they could definitely use a player like Barwin, and have endless cap space to spend.

  55. 55 GordonGekko said at 8:45 PM on January 25th, 2017:

    The Browns hired Greg Williams who runs a 4-3. The Rams hired Wade Phillips who runs a 3-4, so there is a potential landing place for Barwin.

  56. 56 Dominik said at 8:26 AM on January 26th, 2017:

    Barwin could be valuable for the Rams indeed, since they’ll probably have Quinn as OLB, who hasn’t played that position and was a pure pass rusher. Having a versatile OLB like Barwin could allow Quinn to go hunt the QB for 90-95 percent of the time.

    Thing is: afaik the Rams have cap problems. Barwin is probably too expensive for them.