DeSean To Be Tagged & More FB Talk

Posted: February 13th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 96 Comments »

Jeff McLane is reporting that the Eagles will definitely place the Franchise Tag on DeSean Jackson.  This really isn’t surprising news.  Sam and I have written about the subject a few times in the past month.  Here is Sam’s great post.  The question now becomes…what is the point of the tag…to avoid losing him or to be able to trade him?

Andy Reid wants DeSean Jackson back.  He really does.  He wants to pay him good money.  The problem is that he and the Eagles are reportedly $2M per year off from what DeSean and Drew Rosenhaus want per year.  That’s a significant difference.  I don’t think the Eagles have given up on a deal, but I think they expect to have to trade him at this point.

Why not just pay him?  The Eagles have negotiations coming up with LeSean McCoy and Jeremy Maclin in the near future.  They can’t just write a blank check to the most erratic of the trio.  The counter argument is that if the Eagles let DeSean walk and then replace him with an outsider, the team will have to pay that guy big bucks.  True.  But the new player will be bigger and will be more of a red zone threat.  And that is a huge, huge factor.

The Eagles Red Zone offense has been an issue for a few years.  DeSean sometimes is a good decoy down there, but that’s not enough for a player who you pay close to $10M per season.  The NFL is a league based on 3rd downs and the Red Zone.  That’s not DeSean.  He’s not a clutch guy you can force the ball to on 3rd/5.  DeSean is the guy who delivers the big play on 1st down.  He gets you chunks of yardage.  He does a great job of that, but the Eagles have had success over the years with a variety of guys in this role:  Todd Pinkston, Donte Stallworth, and even Reggie Brown.  All 3 were among league leaders in yards per catch during at least one season for the Eagles.  Brown is surprising, but back in 2006 he was 46-816-8 (17.7 ypc).  He was a good downfield receiver.

Maclin has enough speed to be the vertical threat for the Eagles.  He’s shown the ability to get deep and make plays down the field.  Now understand that I’m not comparing Maclin or the other guys to DeSean.  He’s special when it comes to speed and stretching defenses.  DeSean is literally one of the fastest players I’ve ever seen.  He’s a freak.  No one is going to replace him exactly.  The key is that a guy like Maclin could take the role and handle it.  He’d be less dynamic, but would be better in some ways (size, hands, route running).

If the Eagles thought paying DeSean would bring out the best in him and that he would live up to his true potential, they might just do it.  But when a player has been mentally and emotionally erratic for 2 years because he wanted a big deal…I don’t think you can count on him to be Jerry Rice when you hand him a $10M signing bonus.  I don’t blame DeSean for being frustrated, but he let that follow him onto the field more than he should have.  How’s he going to react when he finally does get the big money?  Will he suddenly be tougher?  Will he embrace running over the middle of the field?  Maybe, but I sure wouldn’t count on it.  Money tends to make people relax.

A trade seems to be the most likely outcome.  Some other team, that lacks offensive weapons, will be willing to take a chance on DeSean.  You saw what the Falcons did to get Julio Jones last April.  Their offense needed a key piece and they rolled the dice in a big way.  There are plenty of teams around the league that are desperate for a deep threat.  I don’t know if anyone will pay DeSean exactly what he wants, but they’ll pay more than us.  I’m sure the Eagles will ask for a 2nd round pick as compensation, but more likely we’ll get a 3rd round pick.  Teams don’t like to give up high picks and big bucks to a player.  Plus, there are several FAs to choose from and a deep group of WRs in the draft.  Most FAs are bigger type recievers, which is what we’re looking for.  Teams looking for speed will be looking at DeSean or prospects like Kendall Wright and Joe Adams.

Maybe DeSean and Drew lower their asking price and something gets worked out.  Just seems unlikely at this point.  They have consistently wanted a certain price.  The Eagles have consistently offered something else.  And do understand that the sides have talked.  This isn’t the Eagles letting the guy leave with no effort.  Andy really does like DeSean and would love to keep him.  Just don’t want to pay his asking price.

* * * * *

Someone asked yesterday about why the Eagles even keep a FB.  Is that a waste of a roster space?  Why not get creative?

The position of FB is getting phased out of college and pro football thanks to the spread offense.  3 and 4 WR sets are more common than the I-formation.  The Colts have played a season without a true FB on the roster.  Might be another team that did it as well.  Why not the Eagles?

FB isn’t important in terms of volume, but is important situationally.  Think about when you do need a FB.  3rd/1.  1st/Goal.  Those are impact plays.  Having a FB, or other lead blocker, is essential.  In those situations, the defense is in a short yardage alignment.  Defenders attack gaps and try to penetrate.  You need a FB to pick off anyone that does get through.  If the line keeps the backfield clean, then the FB still has the critical role of sealing the defender at the point of attack or executing a kick out block.

You could get another RB or possibly TE to fill this role, but the problem is that you won’t know how the player will handle it until the regular season.  Goal line plays in practice, training camp, and preseason games are nothing like the real deal.  When it is 3rd/Goal from the 1-yard line in the 4th Qtr of a division game, you need to know your lead blocker can get the job done.

Owen Schmitt isn’t Moose Johnston, but Shady did run for 17 TDs.  Schmitt and Shady had a good thing going down the stretch.  Schmitt knew who to block and did a good job on them.  Shady knew how to read the blocks and get into the endzone.  Don’t just assume anyone could have filled that role of Schmitt’s.

Clay Harbor has some FB potential and could play there in an emergency, but I don’t think you want to count on him in critical situations.  Maybe he turns out great, but maybe he hesitates.  Shady runs into his back and gets stuffed.  The Eagles lose.  The Mayans are right and the world ends.  Are you happy?

While it would be great to free up a roster spot and eliminate someone who is just a FB, you do need a reliable, functional lead blocker.  Don’t just assume anyone 6’0-6’2, 240-260 can handle the role.  It would be interesting to see if Harbor could pull that off, but I’m not in favor of that experiment in what is such a critical season.

* * * * *

Just some Quick Hits-Draft Talk in the most recent post at ScoutsNotebook.  I’m juggling things right now.  I’ve been re-watching the Senior Bowl to study every prospect on every play.  I’ve been watching other teams/players.  I’m also working in some FA study.  So much to do, so little time.

96 Comments on “DeSean To Be Tagged & More FB Talk”

  1. 1 Sam Lynch said at 9:35 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    A couple of points:

    * Yes, Reggie Brown, Stallworth, Pinky, et al had success in the role described by Tommy (though there is an X/Z issue that needs to be resolved there). But they succeeded with defenses that were trying to stop guys like TO and Westbrook and other Eagles weapons in the passing game first and foremost. DeSean is the #1 guy every defense was geared to stop. His numbers in the face of that isn’t really even on the same planet as the numbers those other guys put up as the 3rd/4th/5th priority for the defense.

    * I think it is misleading to say, well the Eagles can’t pay Jackson because it would set the bar too high for Maclin and McCoy. It doesn’t matter who pays him, he’s going to be a major comp for those guys regardless of where he signs. You don’t think they will know and be influenced if he goes elsewhere and signs for $X million per year more? Doesn’t that make them even less likely to re-sign with the Eagles if Maclin/McCoy see the value of waiting for free agency? That’s not a legitimate reason to not pay DeSean. A legitimate reason is that you think he isn’t special and his production is replaceable (or, injury risk crowd, won’t be special *in the future*/production will be replaceable *in the future*) for far less money.

  2. 2 Anonymous said at 1:08 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    He cost us some games, let down his teammates(organization and city) which could of put us in the Giants seat. Where did they go because they didn’t have him? Ray Rice from B’more didn’t cry and pout this yr.(his contract yr.) and RB’s have a shorter career than WR’s in the NFL. He’s probably their most valuable offensive weapon too. If DJax is that concerned about his health than maybe he’s right about it, so why pay tons of money and any signing bonus in the 5yr. contract(he wants) on a player that’s near the end of his career (should be payedlike a 35 yr. old WR with a history of injuries). I wouldn’t want his teammates to see him get payed $8mil & set an example to everyone on how to play and behave in a contract yr. in the Eagles organization. Vick most likely plays better with taller WR’s and maybe that’s why Brees has them in N.O. It’s also better to move down the field steadily and consistently than, in a way, relying on hailmarys in my opinion. Plus he only caught 2 balls when we were in the RZ all yr, and only produced 4 TD,s. How do you evaluate & know how much to pay other receivers next yr if DJax makes them look better than they really are like you mention?

  3. 3 Sam Lynch said at 1:59 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    If he gets paid, say, $2 million per year more than the Eagles offer by a franchise other than the Eagles, what is the lesson that you think his teammates will have learned?

    Either you want him or you don’t. But to want him at $X million and not at $X+2 million is walking a really fine line in terms of the argument, and doesn’t lend itself to grandstanding points like “he let down his teammates” or “he’s fragile”. The only lesson that a teammate will learn is how they can get what they want, not what the Eagles offer. The danger is that it could lead to happy players (once they leave and get paid, like DeSean could) and an Eagles franchise that will lead the league in moral victories, if not on-field ones.

  4. 4 Anonymous said at 2:32 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    That’s the risk every team and player takes in FA. Sometimes a team and a player can come to an agreement and everyone is happy, sometimes a player has to leave a team and go somewhere else to get the $. We just witnessed an agent play hardball with a team and end up costing the player (see Scott Bora$$ and R. Madson) a long term deal. The problem with DJax is determining his value. DJax is not a top WR, so why pay him like one? Top specialists/special team players don’t make lot either (look at Darren Sproles’ deal with NO, 4yrs $14m/$6m guaranteed)

  5. 5 Sam Lynch said at 3:30 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Surely that’s true. If there is a difference in opinion re value, that’s the way it works. Which was the whole point of my post a couple of weeks ago (linked by Tommy at the top). There are reasonable views about his value which may differ substantially. For example, there is a reasonable argument that your statement about him not being a top WR is completely wrong.

    My point here is that differing views on value isn’t the moral high ground. Arguments that turn the discussion into right vs. wrong or about intentional fortitude or concerns about greed rubbing off on teammates are naive, at a minimum, and likely flat out foolish.

  6. 6 Anonymous said at 3:57 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Agreed. My gut is telling me that the Eagles will not come to a long term agreement with DJax. If the rumors are correct, a $2m difference per year is huge.

    I think DeSean hurt himself last season when he short-armed some balls appearing as though he was afraid of taking a hit. Stuff like that travels around the NFL, can’t be a big time WR ($10m+/yr salary range) and be afraid to go over the middle.

  7. 7 Anonymous said at 8:24 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Sam, I think you’re touching on the key point here, and thinking more in terms with the way a real front office would do business, as opposed to an emotional fanbase.

    What can DeSean give the Eagles going forward? What are the other options, in terms of free agents or the offense functioning without him?

    The team really has to take the emotion out of it. Two things make this extra complicated: One, letting him walk is a big unknown in terms of what the offense will be without him, and who will return punts. The second, is that DeSean himself is a big unknown, game to game as well as his career arc.

    Technically, even though the Eagles realize that they’ve gotten a great bargain to date, they don’t owe DeSean anything in terms of back pay. They need to negotiate a good deal with the eye on the future. It makes sense for DeSean to cash in while his value is high, but it doesn’t make sense for the Eagles necessarily to enter into a long-term agreement.

    A short deal with a high per-year value (payable mostly in an upfront signing bonus, which would make him happy) might make the most sense if the Eagles want him back, as the Eagles can wash their hands of him in, say, three years if his production declines, while DeSean will stay motivated for a chance to hit a second big payday as he’ll only be 28.

  8. 8 Anonymous said at 9:40 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Thanks Tommy!
    I can’t think of a better fit for DSJ than the 49ers. They desperately need WR help, especially one that can separate. Ginn could walk opening a spot for DSJ on PR. DSJ is a California guy who may take “somewhat” of a discount if he can return home. the 49ers also pick very late making it easier for them to give up a 2nd rounder.

  9. 9 Ben Aven said at 9:43 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Great post. I am extremely anxious to see what our WR picture will look like going into the 2012 season.
    In your opinion, do you think drafting someone like Joe Adams and letting him and Riley Cooper compete for a starting position would be enough if we do lose Desean? It would give us another young receiver to develop and finally give Riley Cooper a legitimate chance to show if he is capable of being a starting WR.

  10. 10 Anonymous said at 11:25 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Eagles need to upgrade WR even if DeSean returns.

    Expect someone to be brought in no matter what. If DeSean stays, 1 new guy. If he goes, 2 new guys (one draft, one FA).

  11. 11 Anonymous said at 9:49 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Bowe, Colston and V. Jackson could all be available in free agency this year. That is the competition D. Jackson would face on the open market. D. Jackson has been great here, but if any of those three are available, there is no question who the Eagles should pay. Those are not situational WRs or RS. They are legitimate targets on any down.

  12. 12 Anonymous said at 8:38 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Jackson = much bigger carbon copy of D. Jackson
    Colston = Brees makes him look very good.
    Bowe = legit all-around WR who’s never played with a QB as good as Vick. I would take him over Jackson, or for the same money as Jackson. He’s also 27.

    I’m not opposed to bringing DeSean back, but I think with all these guys you have to factor in price and what they bring to the table over the course of the deal. If the difference in money is negligible, then you go Bowe, D. Jax, Colston, VJax, imho

    As tough as it is to deal with change and integrating into a new offense, given that we need to be good right away in 2012, that potential drawback is offset by the potential drawback of not knowing which DeSean we’re going to get.

  13. 13 Anonymous said at 9:54 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Awesome article! Your mention of “experiment,” got me to think about how each year there seems to be a eureka moment for the Eagles…AFTER the fact. There’s the first “oh we’ll be fine at linebacker” epiphany – Levon Kirkland, and the, “we don’t really need a return specialist” brainstorm – loss at the Packers opening season, another season dropping the ball at safety..this past year with yet another “Oh shit,” moment at linebacker. I’m forgetting several I know it.

    There’s a friggen trail of tears for all the light bulbs that have come on too late!

    Tommy you could totally do a top ten Andy Reid “Oh shit” moments! It would be huge!

  14. 14 Anonymous said at 11:23 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Andy is perfect. It is the players who let him down. And they all live in a shroud of shame for doing that. Do you really think a man with that thick of a mustache could make mistakes?

  15. 15 Kammich said at 8:18 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Or a man with this type of physique?

  16. 16 Anonymous said at 10:01 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    I also thought the 49ers or Rams would be a great landing spot for him. Sam Bradford needs weapons. Signing someone like Desean would open up them to be able to draft a tackle in the 1st. The niners deep threat is their TE. Put Desean on the field with Vernon Davis and suddley a new world will open up for Davis. You can’t double them both all the time. I really would love Dwayne Bowe out the group of tier one WR’s. He is big, fast and is a redzone threat. Use our early second on Joe Adams and now you have a great WR corp. Machlin/Adams/Bowe/Cooper/??? Plax? Hold onto Avant? Although, biggest question, can the Eagles afford a tier one WR and a FA MLB? If Curtis Lofton is avail, he is going to want top $$$.

    Will they roll the dice let Desean walk, and take Kendall Wright at 15, or trade back for Sanu? (i wouldn’t mind Sanu with Machlin and Joe Adams!!!)

  17. 17 Anonymous said at 6:21 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    We have a solid amount of cap room at the moment. Lofton isn’t going to cost 10 mil a year. More like 6ish. We could sign both. If we get Asante off the books there should be enough room to get Shady and DRC locked up long term if they take slight hometown discounts and the contracts are set up the right way. Granted if we get all 4 (tier 1 WR, Lofton, DRC, Shady) we will be a little tight up against the cap.

  18. 18 Anonymous said at 8:43 PM on February 13th, 2012:


    Current Estimated Cap Room: $23,172,068 … that’s including everyone not under contract (DeSean, Mathis, etc.) and not taking off Asante’s $9.5 million.

    So the team has in the neighborhood of, let’s say $32 million, to get an MLB, WR, re-sign Mathis and Landri, sign backup QB and RB, leave room for new deals for McCoy, Maclin, DRC, etc.

    I think it’s there if it can be finagled, but you’re right, a big cap number for a WR and an MLB could lop that number in half quickly. Maybe the extensions don’t get done til midseason.

  19. 19 ryan said at 10:03 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    So in essence you are saying Landri at FB? Sounds good to me.

  20. 20 Anonymous said at 10:07 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    He did play FB in some situations in JAX.

  21. 21 Mac said at 10:44 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Now that is a use of a roster spot that I can get behind!

  22. 22 Anders Jensen said at 12:36 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    You want Landri to be Dan Klecko 2.0 for us? 😛

  23. 23 Mac said at 4:15 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Nope… I want Landri to be a DT but use the wasted roster spot for FB.

  24. 24 Anonymous said at 10:07 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Djax and a 5th round pick to NE for one of their first rounders…what say you Tommy?Then we draft LK40 at 15 and Zach Brown with NE’s pick.

  25. 25 Zachary said at 10:22 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    And who plays WR in this situation? We move DeSean and replace him with a LB?

  26. 26 Anonymous said at 10:44 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    The WR draft class is deep this year.with two 2nd rounders we can definitely draft a guy with 4.5 speed and more size.If we don’t upgrade our LB’s with a wide 9 scheme our defense will be dead on arrival.with LK40 and Zbrown plus the lil’ ball of hate iggles will be a top 5 it!!!

  27. 27 Zachary said at 3:37 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    LB’s are a dying breed in my mind. Maybe thats why I’m not with the whole Eagles fan base in wanting a LB. Teams are passing more then ever. TE’s are more freakish than ever before. Having a guy who is really a run defender (or a tackelr – LK ) doesn’t make sense to me. Brown could be interesting, but I’ve heard he struggles tacking. Coverage makes up a lot but if he can’t tackle, just get a CB.

    I think the Eagles – if they trade DeSean – should be looking at a WR at 15 and a WR in the 2nd. They need to upgrade on Avant, as well as replace DeSean. That’s a tough thing to do in one draft….we better hope they hit.

  28. 28 Anonymous said at 7:23 PM on February 14th, 2012:

    I don’t think upgrading Avant is a “need.” If they drafted a guy who could eventually take his place, great, but he’s more than adequate, capable of big catches and the occasional big game, and seems to be regarded as one of the glue guys/offensive leaders.

    Since they actually have time to be around each other this year, and leadership is needed, we’ll see if that makes any difference.

    Definitely not a need. A want.

  29. 29 Mac said at 10:45 AM on February 13th, 2012:


  30. 30 Anonymous said at 6:23 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Amen, then get Sanu and Jordan White and Madonna will finally have the “World Peace” she so desires.

  31. 31 Anonymous said at 10:21 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    I think this guy could really function in our offense, the way a DeSean was meant to. At 205-210 pounds, Pierre could catch the short stuff and absorb a lick, and he still has speed to go the distance … I bet he’d be thrilled with 4 or 5 mil a year. Just making that up, but if we’re looking at DeSean at 10/year over several years, we might actually be able to do better.

    If we’re looking at DeSean at 10/year just this year only, then maybe we run with him. I don’t know.

  32. 32 James Coe said at 7:11 AM on February 14th, 2012:

    Okay, new plan: Let DeSean walk. Trade Maclin for a 2nd and a 2013 4th. Sign Bowe and Garcon. Draft Kuechly, Zach Brown and Joe Adams. Problem solved :-p

  33. 33 Anonymous said at 7:26 PM on February 14th, 2012:

    I’m with you except for the trading Maclin part lol

  34. 34 James Coe said at 7:21 AM on February 14th, 2012:

    I hear he’s pretty quick…

  35. 35 Anonymous said at 7:25 PM on February 14th, 2012:

    That second play is the one I’m thinking of when I say he has the speed to play in this offense.

  36. 36 Zachary said at 10:21 AM on February 13th, 2012:


    Where do you get the 3rd round price tag?

    I feel like there have been varying degrees of picks sent for “highly touted” young NFL WR’s.

    Joey Galloway and Roy Williams – both netted huge amount of picks for the Seahawks and Lions. Santonio only netted a 5th rounder, but you were dealing with a up-coming suspension, as well as a guy who at the time was Tweeting about “wake & bakes”…

    The Pats paid Welker and gave up a 2nd round pick to aquire him.

    Brandon Marshall got the Broncos 2- 2nd round picks (and got a huge $ extension)

    Seems like your 3rd round pick might be a low value on a guy like DeSean.

  37. 37 Mac said at 10:48 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    In my opinion, the 3rd round discount is for a number of variables:

    1. Desean is an amazing yet limited weapon
    2. Desean is coming off his worst season
    3. Drew Rosenhaus
    4. Glut of FA WRs this off season

  38. 38 Anonymous said at 11:21 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    I’d love to get a 2nd, but don’t want to count on it.

  39. 39 Steven Dileo said at 11:23 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    I would rather franchise DeSean, try to work out something with and let him walk in 2013 if nothing else works than take a 3rd rounder for him next season.

  40. 40 Eric Weaver said at 12:03 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    If they somehow get a 3rd for DeSean and a 4th or 5th for Asante, I would really enjoy it if the Eagles traded back into the 1st round to get another player in the 1st.

    The last 5 seasons or so it’s really helped steer poor franchises into quality teams. Falcons got Matt Ryan and Sam Baker, although Baker has been disappointing. Packers got Raji and Matthews. Jets got Ferguson and Mangold. The list goes on and on.

  41. 41 Anonymous said at 10:32 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    I still think that at the end of the day, once most of the elite WR Free Agents will be tagged or re-signed, Desean will sign a 4-year contract with the Eagles including a 15 Mio SB and worth 8m$ per year.

    Which I really hope will happen.

  42. 42 Anonymous said at 11:19 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Here’s the problem. If DeSean isn’t signed by the start of FA, the Eagles will make WR a priority and go sign one in the first few days. That kills DeSean’s chances of returning.

  43. 43 Anonymous said at 11:52 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    …which I wouldn’t have a problem with at all. As long as Desean’s replacement goes by the name of Stevie Or Piere…

    I just think that Desean’s chances of returning (at least for one more year) aren’t that slim like most people seem to believe.

  44. 44 Anonymous said at 12:11 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    You could be right. I just don’t think so. We’ll see how much DeSean wants to be an Eagle vs how much he wants every possible dollar. And I don’t mean that to mean he should take less to stay. If he wants max dollars, so be it. NFL players have a short shelf life.

  45. 45 Anders Jensen said at 2:08 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    I will never fault a player for taking the money. How many of us wouldnt change job for a 25% more money (Jackson gets 8 mill vs 10 mill somewhere else)

  46. 46 Mac said at 10:39 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    I was banging the drum last year saying we didn’t have a talented enough FB to justify a roster spot. I really haven’t changed my mind because I am still not impressed by Owen’s blocking skillz.

  47. 47 Anonymous said at 11:20 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Owen isn’t a great lead blocker. No one disputes that. Very replaceable. On the other hand, he doesn’t cost much and does fit the offense. He did a good job on RZ runs late in the season. He’s not a guy we must replace.

  48. 48 Mac said at 4:16 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    I guess I was mostly just spoiled with Leonard Weaver…

  49. 49 Steven Dileo said at 11:14 AM on February 13th, 2012:


    Mike Wallace- Is paying him 15-16 million/year too much? Would it impact Maclin’s or Shady’s contract? Or is it better to pay DeSean the 8-10 million/year that they’re negotiating for.

  50. 50 Sam Lynch said at 12:19 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Um … 1) Holy crap yes, especially given that he isn’t unrestricted. 2) Yes. 3) Yes, but that’s a pretty false dichotomy.

  51. 51 Anonymous said at 12:36 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Megatron might be worth $12M or so, and Fitz.

    You can make an argument that Wallace is better than DeSean because of his size and ability to catch the ball at all levels of the field, but $10M is his max worth.

  52. 52 Sam Lynch said at 2:01 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    And that $10 million austinfan suggests doesn’t even take into account that you’d have to give up picks to get him. The value of the pick you give up just subtracts from the amount of money you’d be indifferent to paying him vs. DeSean.

    Mike Wallace as a 2012 replacement is a total non-starter.

  53. 53 Anonymous said at 2:53 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Of course, that argument also applies to tagging DeSean and then trying to trade him.

  54. 54 Sam Lynch said at 3:33 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    It certainly does. If the Eagles plan to tag and trade, they should be willing to take whatever they can get — setting trade demands too high just winds up making any deal unlikely and leaving both the team and player worse off.

  55. 55 Anonymous said at 4:02 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    So true. Don’t be greedy. A prolonged situation isn’t good for anyone.

  56. 56 Alex Karklins said at 11:15 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    I think much of the hard line stance taken by Jackson/Rosenhaus can be attributed to perceived back pay for the seasons that Jackson has outperformed his contract, rather than his current value. With the Eagles consistently saying that Jackson will be taken care of, can you blame him for taking them at their word? I would hate to see him go and want him locked up with a generous, but fair contract that acknowledges the years he was vastly underpaid.

  57. 57 Kristopher Cebula said at 3:46 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    the league is full of guys in their first few years who are drastically underpaid. you have to prove yourself to get the big deal. that is how it works. there is no back pay for a guy coming off a rookie contract. not for desean and not for any of the other players coming off their first contract

  58. 58 Alex Karklins said at 5:10 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    I know that’s not how it works, but if you want to sign him and keep him happy and productive, the offer has to be based on not only last season, but the previous years as well. If the Eagles use only last year as a measuring stick for negotiations, DeSean is as good as gone.

    I hope that those of you rooting for Jackson’s departure are prepared to have him make a game-breaking play against the Eagles at some point. That would drive me absolutely crazy, especially if he goes to the Redskins.

  59. 59 Anonymous said at 11:51 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    T-LAW . . . you wrote in SNB:

    “I don’t think Courtney Upshaw is worth a Top 10 pick. Very good player, but I think he lacks the explosion to be an elite pass rusher. 3-4 teams may love him anyway, but there is no way a 4-3 team should consider him that early.”

    Is a comparison of Upshaw to Brandon Graham — when coming out of college — a fair one?

    Did BG have the explosion of an elite pass rusher at UM?

    Both guys seem like they’re built the same (even the short arms) and play with great motors.

  60. 60 Anonymous said at 12:12 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Graham much faster, much more productive. Led nation in TFLs as a Senior. Great showing at the Senior Bowl.

    Upshaw is more of a 15 to 20 type player in my mind. More power than speed.

  61. 61 Anonymous said at 1:42 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    We’ll get more evidence from the combine, but I have a sneaking suspicion that Upshaw would be a bust at DE, if he lacks great outside burst, and is short with short arms (31″), he’s going to struggle on either side. He’s probably better suited to 3-4 OLB in a system where they move him around.

  62. 62 Anonymous said at 11:58 AM on February 13th, 2012:

    Would you consider trading our 1st rd pick, Asante & DJax 4 the 2nd pick? Either draft RG111 or control where he goes via a trade and accumulate players and/or draft picks(I wouldn’t mind seeing Shannahan trip out a little). St. Louis would save money from the 2nd pick & add a couple players that would excite their city(fans) instantly & get the 15th pick. They might value that a lot more than whatever the Skins or Browns could offer and maybe even give us draft pick(s).

    I just read somewhere that Schwartz(Cal) was the only player to consistently stop Coples(N.C.) during the Senior Bowl. Was wondering if he’s someone you’d consider and where in the draft he’d go?

  63. 63 Anonymous said at 12:09 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    or swap pick(s).

  64. 64 Kristopher Cebula said at 3:50 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    not really sure that going qb with our first pick is the best plan for this team, but i bet there wouldn’t be too many people on here who’d be upset at the thought of drafting RG3(or luck if the colts shock everyone and draft RG3)

  65. 65 Anonymous said at 12:09 PM on February 13th, 2012:


    You wrote regarding D-Jax:

    “I’m sure the Eagles will ask for a 2nd round pick as compensation, but more likely we’ll get a 3rd round pick. Teams don’t like to give up high picks and big bucks to a player.”

    If that’s the case (and it makes perfect sense), then shouldn’t the Eagles expect at best a 4th round pick for Asante Samuel.

    Samuel is going into his 9th year and is 32 years old.

    Samuel’s contract calls for $9.5 million this year.

    And he’s not much of a press-cover guy.

    I know CBs are hard to find. But Samuel’s on the downside of his career and is very expensive.

    (In hindsight, Howie — if the story’s true — should have accepted the Lions’ preseason offer of a 2nd round pick for Asante. Per the story, Howie was holding out for a 1st rounder — which seems hard to believe given Samuel’s age, cost, and scheme limitations.)

  66. 66 Anonymous said at 12:35 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    The followup was that the Lions offered two second day picks, not sure what that means. But the 2nd rd pick seems not to have existed.

    I’d be happy with a 4th for Asante, addition by subtraction, that $7M in cap room buys you a nice FA MLB while DRC gets to start at LCB and Marsh because the backup outside CB. Now you go into the draft with only SLB to fill (if you don’t pick up a bargain basement guy).

    As far as DeSean, cap him and you lose all flexibility in FA, though if you want to gamble, jump on a FA WR and let him walk, I don’t think anyone will jump to trade for him knowing they have to give him an overpriced contract to boot.

  67. 67 Anonymous said at 12:30 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Here are some numbers on Eagle WR catches 30+ yards in the air. This is where DeSean brings something special, most WRs can make plays in the 21-30 yard region, heck Celek had 4 catches in that area in 2010 and Harbor could thrive on those plays if they targeted him.

    All these years, they scored 25 ppg or more, enough to win a championship with a top 5 defense.

    2011: 12 catches > 30 yards for 559 yards and 2 TDs
    2010: 11 catches > 30 yards for 585 yards and 5 TDs
    2009: 11 catches > 30 yards for 590 yards and 8 TDs
    2008: 2 catches > 30 yards for 108 yards and 0 TD
    2006: 7 catches > 30 yards for 373 yards and 4 TDs
    2004: 12 catches > 30 yards for 657 yards and 4 TDs
    2002: 3 catches > 30 yards for 142 yards and 1 TD

    It’s as much about the QB and the OL as the WR:
    McNabb 8 25 414 5 TD
    Garcia 2 10 100 1 TD
    2007: 3 17 156 3 TD [back to back injuries in 2005 and 2006 took something out of him]
    2008: 2 24 112 0 TD
    2009: 10 27 499 7 TD

    2009: 9 catches > 30 yards for 479 yards and 6 TDs / 53 677 3 TDs
    2010: 7 catches > 30 yards for 368 yards and 2 TDs / 40 688 4 TDs
    2011: 8 catches > 30 yards for 352 yards and 2 TDs / 50 509 2 TDs

    2009: 2 catches > 30 yards for 91 yards and 2 TDs
    2010: 4 catches > 30 yards for 217 yards and 3 TDs
    2011: 2 catches > 30 yards for 102 yards and 0 TDs

    2011: 2 catches > 30 yards for 105 yards and 0 TDs

    2010: 4 catches 21-30 yards for 154 yards and 2 TDs

    DeSean 1 catch > 30 yards for 60 yards and 0 TD
    G Lewis 1 catch > 52 yards for 60 yards and 0 TD

    Brown 4 catches > 30 yards for 190 yards and 2 TDs
    Stallworth 1 catch > 30 yards for 51 yards and 0 TD
    Baskett 1 catch > 30 yards for 87 yards and 1 TD
    G Lewis 1 catch > 30 yards for 45 yards and 1 TD

    TO 4 catches > 30 yards for 196 yards and 3 TDs
    Pinkston 6 catches > 30 yards for 353 yards and 1 TD
    Fred ex 2 catches > 30 yards for 108 yards and 0 TDs

    Pinkston 3 catches > 30 yards for 142 yards and 1 TD

  68. 68 Thorin McGee said at 1:06 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    All right, I just deleted the screed I was going to post because it was a bit harsh. (Suffice it to say, I think if 2003 Tommy Lawlor, or even 2005 Tommy Lawlor heard 2011 Tommy Lawlor talk about Todd Pinkston and Reggie Brown as if they were somehow indicative of a positive WR situation, he’d smack himself in his fool mouth.)

    But that aside, here’s what I’ve been thinking about franchising DeSean: If you’re the Eagles and you don’t want to commit to a fragile DeSean for 5 years at $50 mil, then doesn’t it make a lot of sense to just franchise him and keep him? $10 mil is not really that bad compared to the numbers they’d be throwing around, and if he flames out this year, alright, you cut ties.

    If you’re worried about DeSean’s longevity or durability, I don’t think paying him the franchise tag is necessarily the negative outcome I’ve seen it made out to be. I don’t even think he’d be the problem he was in 2011 because he’d at least be getting what he thinks he’s worth.

  69. 69 Anonymous said at 1:52 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    I’m not positive but I think that hurts the salary cap a lot more so than a contract. Less money for FA, Resigning players etc.

  70. 70 Anonymous said at 2:02 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Pinky and Reggie filled roles. Both were good down the field receivers. That’s a fact. We can rip them for their faults, but the guys did some things well. Ignoring a skill or talent just to rip the guy for the stuff we didn’t like isn’t part of a smart discussion.

    DeSean has said he’d be okay with the Tag. Sam isn’t so sure. In his post he talked about DeSean not reporting to camp and then possibly sitting out some regular season games. I have no idea what DeSean’s reaction would be, but it would be dangerous to assume he’d be totally fine and it wouldn’t cause any problems. DeSean has shown in the last 2 years that his contract situation affected him. Paying him $9.5M this year would give him some money, but he’s looking for a $10M bonus and then a big paycheck as well. Not sure he’d be all smiles with just the tag. Maybe.

  71. 71 Sam Lynch said at 2:06 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    The problem is that it is a one year solution that leaves you in a terrible situation in 2013, with DeSean, Shady, DRC all needing to be extended / replaced, Vick getting a bump up in cap hit, Maclin hitting a contract year … the question has to be if you are building the best possible team for 2012 at the expense of the future, or the best possible team for the next several years. Combine that with the likelihood that DeSean would sit out and/or half-ass a number of games if franchised, and you are now building for 2012 alone by depending on a guy who won’t be committed to you winning games.

    Anyway, that’s the anti-“let him play on the tag” argument.

  72. 72 Brian Pillion said at 6:05 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    While I agree that there’s definitely the possibility that DeSean would pout if given the tag, I think that if you look at some of his more recent comments, by the end of the year he’d realized that that just wasn’t the way he wanted to handle his business. I honestly think the smartest way to handle the situation is to franchise him and then listen to offers. If you can get a decent pick for him, move him. If not, hold on to him, and have a little bit of faith that he’s going to work really hard in 2012 toward the long-term contract he feels he deserves. Go out and sign a MLB in free agency, trade Asante, and go BPA in the draft, with the caveat that you’re looking to pick up DeSean’s long-term replacement (who can play the slot as a rookie) in the first couple of rounds.

  73. 73 Anonymous said at 1:29 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    If Al Davis, RIP, could’ve held on for 1 more yr the DJax possible trade would of been amazing. He’d get the fastest WR with talent, probably pay him $15mil per yr for him and give the Eagles at least 2 first rd picks and a 2nd. Hopefully in his memory his son will tell the GM to do it.

  74. 74 Anonymous said at 2:02 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Hadn’t thought of this angle. Well done, sir.

  75. 75 Anonymous said at 3:56 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    They already payed tribute with the Palmer trade. What pick do you think you’re going to get from them?….it would be a 2, tops. Doubt they’d give both a future 1 and 2 this year.

  76. 76 Anonymous said at 2:07 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Sam…are you going to let Evan Silva talk about you like this on Twitter?


    Lynch’s conditioning, especially in offseasons, has long been an issue. Ideal franchise tag candidate. Keep him hungry, in contract year.!/evansilva/status/169120034919153664

  77. 77 Sam Lynch said at 3:36 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    I don’t know nothing about that. It is up to Mr. Lawlor and the IgglesBlitz franchise at this point.

  78. 78 Anonymous said at 6:30 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Tag and trade to BGN? Frees up cap room for PBR/Pudding and future cap room for Megan.

  79. 79 Anonymous said at 6:45 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    I think I found my GM.

  80. 80 Anonymous said at 2:37 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Maybe the Franchise tag will give Jackson $1.5 million more than he is worth but it gives the Eagles a year to find his replacement. If they don’t tag him they lose him and get nothing in return and have to sign a free agent a probably $2 million or so more than he is worth – for multiple years, or go with a rookie unknown. So paying the extra freight on the Franchise tag keeps the Eagles options open and costs them only a premium that they would have to pay anyway. This way they can draft Jackson’s replacement and have him develop a year first. Jackson may then show he has matured and improved and we can then sign a long term deal more to Jackson’s liking. Alternatively Jackson may perform at his historic good but not great level and come down to reality about his true worth. But the Eagles in using the tag minimize the overall risk. If the Eagles need to dip into the WR free agent market they can do so next year. The Eagles need to find a big WR who can play in the red zone. So they are probably going to draft a big WR high this year – even if Jackson were to sign a long term deal and even if they sign Burress IMHO.

    The downsides are two. If the Eagles do find a good free agent willing to sign a long term deal at a good price they will not be able to sign him if Jackson has already signed his tender. And if Jackson holds off signing the tender and doesn’t come to the OTA’s and camp we could be in for a repeat of 2011.

  81. 81 Anders Jensen said at 3:24 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    If the Eagles tag Jackson, who is you favorite target to be added to the mix?

  82. 82 Anonymous said at 5:38 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Here’s the thing about Keuchly. He looks like the only MLB than can reasonably be chosen with the 15th pick. But he could also go as early as 11 so there is no certainty that the Eagles will be able to get him. If they do not sign a MLB in free agency then they could be screwed for the season. Even if they get Keuchly it may take a while before he can start.

    Are there LB’s in free agency who would be good options at MLB who can also play one of the other linebacker spots if we get Keuchly and he is ready to play? Why are you are saying the Eagles will likely pick up their MLB and probably an OLB as well in free agency?

  83. 83 Kammich said at 5:56 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    So, the Steelers are saying that Reshard Mendenhell will likely miss the entire 2012 season.

    Can I officially start the “Hey Steelers, Draft Bernard Pierce!” bandwagon?

  84. 84 Anonymous said at 7:20 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Steelers have to do well this yr or there’s no SupPA Bowl with iggles!

  85. 85 Anonymous said at 7:53 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    According to, we have $23 mil free right now (without resigning any free agents or getting rid of Asante, Jamaal, Juqua, + Co.).

    That’s pretty impressive, considering last year’s spending spree. We’ve got a lot of room to play with potentially.

  86. 86 Anonymous said at 12:24 AM on February 14th, 2012:

    Actually it does account for Juqua (I posted the same thing on BGN) but as you note, it does not account for Jamaal or Asante, neither of whom are likely to be here next year. So with that in mind we have $33 million to spend, on a top-tier WR (maybe), a MLB and an SLB, Evan Mathis, a backup QB, backup RB, Derek Landri, possibly King Dunlap, all our draft picks, and then free up space for new deals for McCoy, Maclin and DRC.

    If the new deals can wait, it looks like we’ll have enough to spend on the things we need if we’re creative with it. In truth, no long-term deal affects only the coming year, so they’d have to be structured in a way not to hurt us in the future.

  87. 87 Anonymous said at 12:30 AM on February 14th, 2012:

    “We’ll have enough to spend.”

    Cuz, you know, I have some say in it.

  88. 88 Anders Jensen said at 5:37 AM on February 14th, 2012:

    The Eagles on Joe Banner have never been in any trouble with the cap and we are still some of the highest spenders in the NFL. Thats what good contracts brings you, even Vicks crazy deal isnt that bad compared to what type of deals other teams sign there players to.

  89. 89 Anonymous said at 8:24 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    Sign Randy Moss and Plax for around $10mil, keep Maclin and Avant then draft 2 WR’s.

  90. 90 Anonymous said at 1:36 AM on February 14th, 2012:

    In all seriousness, I’d like to kick the tires on Moss.

  91. 91 Anonymous said at 7:27 PM on February 14th, 2012:

    I’m warming up to the idea. Like DeSean though, there’s no telling what he has to give and what he’ll do if the going gets rough. But man, is he talented, at at 75% of his former self.

  92. 92 Anonymous said at 8:39 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    They could draft someone in the first 3 rds like Wright or Adams, then someone later to compete with Cooper and anyone everyone else. During the games they could mix things up a little.

  93. 93 Anonymous said at 10:31 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    hey T

    all signs point to lofton and tulloch staying with their respective if LK40 goes b4 15..what are our options in the draft?.I say trade down.. draft ZBrown..put him at SAM and trade up early in 2nd round and grab Dont’a..

  94. 94 Anonymous said at 11:22 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    What do you think about trading DJAX, Asante and swapping our 1st pick(15) for the 2nd pick overall. Then we could give Cleveland RG111 for the 4th pick and I think it’s the 23rd or something(maybe we’d even get more) than get Z. Brown with the 23rd. Unless it’s better to keep RG111. I guess the pros to that would be haveing one of the best backups for 2 yrs(after being behind Kafka maybe the 1st few games) then maybe trading Vick. Basically there’d be numerous options from several teams including getting Brown, draft picks and players from other teams if we took that 2nd pick. Rams would get 2 game changers for themselves plus the 15th pick which the fans would probably like. A win win situation accept for the Skins and Shanahan would be pissed.

  95. 95 Anonymous said at 10:32 PM on February 13th, 2012:

    a lot of teams use a D lineman for goal line fullback. the eagles tried it with klecko but then andy got carried away… they dont really need a full time FB. just use someone who’s willing to hit somebody. what’s ernie sims up to these days?

  96. 96 Anonymous said at 11:03 AM on February 14th, 2012:

    They messed with the boards again. Screw it, I’m here full time. Don’t you let them take you over Tommy!!!