Manic Monday

Posted: July 25th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 28 Comments »

At least give me another year before calling me Bryan Smith. Please!!!


The lockout is all but over.  The vibe in the football universe is very positive today.  And it is great.  People are talking about football and not business or negotiations.

The Brett Favre to Philly rumor is now 99.9% dead.  The hot rumor today is that the Eagles will sign DE Ray Edwards of the Vikings.  The odd part of that rumor is that it’s coming from a writer that covers the Falcons, D. Orlando Ledbetter.  He is a very good writer and smart guy, but I’m curious about his sources.  Jeff McLane has been speculating a lot about Edwards as an Eagles target.  That almost makes me think this is something being pushed by an agent.

Every year we see agents use the Eagles.  A couple of years ago we were supposed to be close to signing DE Antonio Smith.  Instead, he went to the Cardinals.  We had no interest in him at all and never pursued him.  Smith’s agent used us to try and get a better deal for his client.

I can’t confirm if Edwards is or isn’t a target.  I don’t think he’s an ideal fit for the Wide-Nine.  That said, Jim Washburn does have a track record of success with biggers DEs.

Dave Ball – 2010 – 6’5, 255 – 7 sacks (career high)
Kyle Vanden Bosch – 6’4, 278 – 2 seasons with 12 or more sacks
Antwan Odom – 2007 – 6’4, 278 – had 8 sacks
Jevon Kearse – 6’4, 265 – multiple good seasons
Kenny Holmes – 6’4, 265 – 2000 – 8 sacks
Kevin Carter – 6’5, 290 – 2002 – 10 sacks

The Eagles have a good group of DE prospects, but only Ricky Sapp comes close to that size range.  He’s 6’4, 252.  Bobby McCray is 6’6, 260, but I think he’s a real longshot to even push for a roster spot.

I’m fine with adding Edwards, but I’m still doubtful that he’s a serious target.

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For SB Nation Philly, I wrote my newest column on what the Eagles can learn from last year’s Packers team.

Feel free to insert your own “to run the ball more” joke.

* * * * *

Couple of interesting nuggets from Eagles Live on  Adam Caplan said that the Eagles really liked LB Ben Lieber a few years back and had him scheduled for a visit, but the Vikings made him an offer he couldn’t refuse and he signed there.  I hate hearing that.  Ben would have been a terrific SAM for us.

Caplan will be blogging for 97.5 The Fanatic this week.  He said he’s got some good free agency nuggets he’ll be posting this afternoon.  He indicated that he had a couple of scoops in regard to Kevin Kolb.

Caplan made it sound like the Eagles adding any free agents at LB is a longshot.  I didn’t hear him address whether Stewart Bradley was likely to return.

* * * * *

You guys are firing off a lot of questions in the Comments section.  I do my best to answer, but can’t get to everything.  If I miss you, just repeat the question in a different post.

Someone wanted to know my thoughts on Daniel Te’o-Nesheim.  He didn’t do a whole lot last year.  One reader wondered if he was Bryan Smith, pt. 2.  I don’t think so.  Teo is a guy the Eagles were high on and Washburn was as well.  Teo played hurt last year and that robbed him of some burst.  He’s not such a gifted athlete that he can be hurt and still beat OTs.  I thought he showed a good feel for the game.  He played hard and didn’t look lost on the field.  If he’s at 100% this year, I expect him to be a solid contributor.

Plenty of people have asked about UDFAs.  I’ll post my list of targets later today or early tomorrow.  RB is a key position for me.  That’s a spot where a guy could join us and push for a roster spot.

More on the O-line…we’re all guessing right now.  We’ll see what Howard Mudd truly wants when the team starts making moves in a couple of days.  LT and LG are set.  Danny Watkins is penciled in at RG.  C is wide open.  I fully expect Winston Justice to be the RT, but that isn’t set in stone.

One thing to remember for those who want to replace Justice is that we need an upgrade there or there’s no reason to make a move.  Doug Free is the top name on the market.  I think some team that’s desperate for a LT will overpay him.  Matt Light is a quality veteran, but has spent his whole career at LT.  Jared Gaither is a 2-year starter at LT.  He’s got injury and character issues.  Willie Colon would be interesting, but he missed all of 2010 due to injury.  Can you count on him?  Haven’t we had bad luck in the past with signing guy coming off injury?

Marshal Yanda of the Ravens is one guy who would make sense.  He can play RG or RT.  He’s coming off a good year.  He should fit the Mudd system.  If we make a move at RT, he’s the guy I’d bet on.  I still think we stay put, but I don’t have a problem with discussing potential targets.

Just remember that if we do make a change, it should be a clear upgrade.  Light, Gaither, and guys like that would not be clear upgrades.  They might pan out or might fail miserably.

28 Comments on “Manic Monday”

  1. 1 CVD said at 2:09 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    dend is one the most difficult positions to play ur first year. orakpo played well but that is very rare. nobody comes in and lights it up. u gotta give the guy some time

  2. 2 iskar36 said at 3:06 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    So if I am understanding this timeline right (and with all the different reports, I may be wrong), it sounds like the way things will happen in terms of free agency and trades, the Eagles will be in a good position with Kolb. It seems like we will be able to trade him before we can sign free agents, so if Arizona seems to shy away from the trade, we will not miss out on one of the top tier CBs in FA. I’m definitely happy to see that.

  3. 3 Jordan said at 3:33 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Tommy, reports are that Seattle is still “in the hunt” for Kolb. Assuming the Eagles were looking for live bodies in a deal, possibly in addition to draft picks, are there any players on the Seahawks roster that you would be interested in, or would you think the Birds would go for straight picks? Think Lofa Tatupu or Aaron Curry could be had to remove some question marks from the LB corp?

  4. 4 CVD said at 3:44 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    I thought that everything starts tomorrow at 10am, trades , free agency etc. It just wont be official till Friday. I could be wrong though

  5. 5 Iskar36 said at 3:52 PM on July 25th, 2011:


    My understanding is that free agents can negotiate tomorrow, but they can’t sign until Friday. Thus, if we haven’t traded Kolb by Thursday, we can still make an offer to any of the CBs before they sign anywhere.

  6. 6 nzflyer said at 3:54 PM on July 25th, 2011:


  7. 7 CVD said at 4:04 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    from what i heard, and this could be wrong, is that it always takes a few days for signings to become official. so tomorrow someone can make a deal in principle and its as good as done. i think it was mike and mike saying that, but i cant remmeber. but who knows. i hope you are right cuz that does help us

  8. 8 Ken said at 4:09 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    The way I took it is free agents can be signed, but the paperwork can’t be turned in to the league office until Friday at 6:00. The only difference I see is that if a player is signed they will not be able to report to camp until after the paperwork has been submitted.

  9. 9 Tommy Lawlor said at 4:46 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Free agents can negotiate with teams starting tomorrow at 10am.

    Free agents cannot sign with teams until Friday at 6pm. I guess you can “agree” to a deal, but as we learned in the LeCharles Bentley situation, nothing is finished until you get the signature.

  10. 10 Tommy Lawlor said at 4:47 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    RE: Kolb to SEA

    Based on some stuff I’ve heard in the last 24 hours from a couple of sources, I’ll be beyond shocked if he isn’t dealt to the Cardinals.

  11. 11 Anirudh said at 4:51 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Hey Tommy,
    It seems like just about everyone is getting really excited for what new coaching is going to do for us – specifically, with Wash and Mudd. If coaching can make that much of a difference (and I absolutely believe that every now and then it can), how worried should we be about the Cowboys? They got a fantastic D-coordinator in Rob Ryan, and as you (I think) pointed out, when Jason Garrett took over as head coach last year, they were second only to the Pats in points scored. They’re an absurdly talented team and it really seemed to me that the main thing ever holding them back was coaching. That’s ostensibly fixed for now.

  12. 12 Mike said at 5:01 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Tommy – Do think the Birds might make a run at Tyson Clabo? It’s rare that an O-lineman of his caliber hits the open market and we know that Big Red values dominant lineman.

    I know Winston Justice can be a good RT but I don’t want a “good” o-line, I want a dominant o-line. Plus the RT protects Vick’s blindside which makes the position all that much more important.

    Tommy, I hope you’re stocked up groceries cause there will be a lot of action to report on starting tomorrow.

  13. 13 Tommy Lawlor said at 5:20 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Tyson Clabo isn’t a guy you want protecting Vick’s backside. I love Clabo, but he’s a classic RT that is meant to pound on guys as a run blocker. He will thrive in a run oriented offense, but having him pass block 35 times a game isn’t the best way to maximize his ability.

    Lesser version of Jon Runyan. His best fit is to stay in ATL.

  14. 14 Name said at 5:24 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    so i guess tomorrow is just good for trades. if you cant really make deals to till friday

  15. 15 Jeppe said at 5:33 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    @ Tommy

    Will we get some official weigh-inn numbers on the number of players that report to camp? I wonder if Maclin has been able to bulk up again after his sickness, if Jarret is above 200 lb and if Patterson is in the 325 range etc…

  16. 16 Kevin (RealCrippler) said at 5:34 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Tommy, why can’t we flip Clabo and Peters in that scenario?

  17. 17 Tommy Lawlor said at 5:40 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    We get very little weigh-in info. I’ll see if I can find any nuggets. Mike Patterson is the most important of the trio mentioned. We need him around 315.

  18. 18 Tommy Lawlor said at 5:41 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    @ Kevin…

    The best pass rushers are usually the RDE. You need your best pass blocker on that side. Having a lefty QB means you also need a RT that is a good pass blocker. Clabo’s just not a good fit for our offense.

    I do love watching him play.

  19. 19 Kevin (RealCrippler) said at 5:45 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Thanks for the clarification Tommy 🙂
    So essentially to optimize Vick, because he’s a left-handed are two strong tackles. Unfortunately because he’s short, we also need two guards who won’t get bull rushed because he needs to see (at 6’0).

  20. 20 GermanEagle said at 5:48 PM on July 25th, 2011:


    Do you have any interest in Willis McGahee who will be released by the Ravens?

  21. 21 James said at 5:58 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Yo Tommy saw you hating on Gaither!!! J/K. Made me look him up as I was unaware of any recent character issues. Coming out of MD there were clearly issues as he was academically ineligible and went the supplemental draft route. In 2010 the LT starter was Oher and I think the flipped Gaither over to RT which got him little PT. A lot of people have written up about his work ethic as his new character issues. I don’t think he will get big money and the Ravens are his best bet. At RT I am intrigued by his upside but wonder if Mudd can get through. I say pass, as the back injuries and work ethic scare me.

  22. 22 Stephen said at 6:23 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Im happy this is over, the most interesting thing about the next few days is to see what kind of value we get for Kolb. Hearing anything about what the compensation might be Tommy?

  23. 23 CVD said at 6:54 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    pff has pp rated as the 3rd best backer

    3. Paul Posluszny, Buffalo Bills

    It may seem weird to have Posluszny here, given last year he either played at OLB in a 4-3 or inside in a 3-4. But this is where he’s played the majority of snaps over the past three years, and so this is where he belongs in this exercise. The sad thing is Posluszny may be one of the most complete middle linebackers in the league, who struggled with the Bills scheme not knowing what it wanted to do. Still, put him back in the middle and he’s a talent.

  24. 24 CVD said at 6:55 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    and tulloch is 2nd. i doubt we get a backer but i would take either one

    2. Stephen Tulloch, Tennessee Titans

    It will surprise many to see Tulloch this high, and it’s fair to say but for injuries both the man at number four on this list and E.J. Henderson would have been ahead of him. But Tulloch is an underrated player, even if he doesn’t make the kind of highlight reel plays that live long in the memory. What he is though is a sideline to sideline, free flowing tackling machine. Teams need like guys like that.

  25. 25 Cliff said at 7:09 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Tulloch has grown on me because I think it would be great to have one player on our defense who we can count on to be a tackling-machine every week.

    However, I can’t rationalize spending a ton of money on a player like that, especially when we have so many young players developing. The playmaker money spent on Tulloch could prove to be a luxury if Clayton, Matthews, Fokou, or Cheney turn out to be just as solid a couple seasons from now.

  26. 26 CVD said at 7:29 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    i have a feeling we get a few bargains this week. like a leonard weaver type bargain

  27. 27 Eaglesfanatlarge said at 9:47 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Since the Eagles pulled the transition tag from Akers, does that mean they can use it for someone else? If they want to keep Stew as insurance for a young LB corps, is this an option for them?
    I am definitely in the re-sign Stew and Q camp. The Eagles have lots of cap space, and can afford to sign them long-term. If they truly are going all-in this year, then they should only let these guys walk if they have a veteran FA upgrade. With the shortened off-season, the young guns aren’t going to be ready. Plus, if the newbies do progress well this year, and Stew and Q show they stall have something left in the tank, they can be used as trade bait in next year’s draft, particularly if they are signed to long-term deals. Otherwise, just cut them next year and take your lumps.

  28. 28 Kevin said at 9:51 PM on July 25th, 2011:

    Tommy- 2 questions

    1. I see Eagles signed UDFA Greg Cooper, do you like that and can you give any insight?

    2. Have you heard any compensation for Kolb in a trade from your sources? If so, are you comfortable with it?