Over the last several months, all I’ve been hearing from radio guys, bloggers, co-workers, guys at the urinal, the guy at WaWa, babies, my neighbor’s dog, and just about everyone else on the street, is how pitiful the Eagles linebackers and safties were last year. By all the **** talking, you would think that Casey Matthews and Nate Allen played for a hated rival and not our own team.
I do agree that the linebackers and safties left much to be desired, and with the NFL Combine under way, and the 2012 NFL Draft just several weeks away, one can only hope that the Eagles view those positions as positions of need, and not just a fanbase’s inpatient bickering. As bad as we want them to draft a linebacker with their first round pick, it’s just not going to happen folks. With all the hub-bub surrounding these two positions, it’s easy to forget about some of the other major needs the Eagles have.
Like you know,…the quarterback position.
Yeah, I just said quarterback. Sure Michael Vick signed a 6 year, $100 million contract last year, but we all know that 60% of that contract was fluff. It was really only guaranteed for three years, and if the Eagles don’t win a Super Bowl, or at least go deep into the playoffs next year, they will have no reason to bring Michael Vick back in 2013. This begs the question of who will replace Vick once his time is up here, and if you’re the Eagles, now is precisely the time to start thinking about that move.
Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III are two of the more intriguing quarterback prospects to come out of college in as long as I can remember. Luck, the experienced, proto-typical pocket passer who played in a pro-style offense, and Griffin III, the shifty, strong armed play-maker, who today at the combine ran a 4.41 in the 40 yard dash.
The Eagles have the 15th pick in the first round, and will have that, and both Asante Samuel and DeSean Jackson (assuming they franchise him) as trade bait, plus cash and other picks, as ammunition to move up to get one of these two quarterbacks. Although highly unlikely, it’s fun nevertheless to entertain the thought.
Or is it unlikely?
If one person told you that they thought the Eagles were in the mix to sign Nnamdi Asomugha during last years free agent frenzy, they would have been lying. Not only did the Eagles shock the world then, but remember folks, this is the same team that picked Michael Vick up at Levenworth Prison a few years ago. Don’t even act like you saw that coming. And lets not forget the year they signed Javon Kearse, and Terrell Owens within days of each other.
This organization can make a splash with the best of them, and I wouldn’t be shocked whatsoever to see them make another one this year in the draft.
As far as their choice if they were to make this splash? Who the hell knows. I personally like Andrew Luck over RG3. He’s big, strong, accurate, and exceptionally smart. He fits the mold of a true pocket passer, and can read a defense, maybe better than some of the quarterbacks who are already starting in the NFL.
Not since Ron Jaworski have the Eagles had a quarterback who could stand in the pocket, and deliver a strike, and do it on a consistent basis. It’s obvious that this is the style of quarterback that wins in today’s NFL. Some of the best quarterbacks in the league are immobile pocket passers. Tom Brady, Eli Manning, Drew Brees. None of these guys are known for their wheels. The rules the NFL have in force now to protect the quarterback, makes it even more of a reason to go in this direction.
Tell that to Andy Reid though. If anyone is infatuated with athletic quarterbacks it’s Big Red. First Donovan McNabb and then Michael Vick. The thing that I’ll never understand though, and another reason I hate Andy Reid, is that neither of them really fit the type of offense he wants to run. Both McNabb and Vick could throw a kite through a tornado, but neither of them have been consistently accurate, and neither of them have that touch that the great quarterbacks have. McNabb was about as clutch as a paraplegic, and Vick is like a bi-polar Rain Man.
I do however see the reason why people fall in love with athletic quarterbacks like Vick and McNabb. Ever since Cam Newton tore up the league last year, everyone wants the fast, strong armed quarterback who can improvise when the pocket breaks down, and Robert Griffin III certainly fits that mold. Sure he’s fast and has a good arm, but he played at Baylor, in a spread system, and ran almost as much as he passed. When I saw RG3 play this past season, I saw a slightly taller Troy Smith, but with better running ability. I’m not saying he won’t be good, in fact, I think he’ll be one of the first Heisman Trophy winning quarterbacks in a long time to actually be good in the NFL.
When it’s all said and done, I don’t think the Eagles will be able to move up to get either one of these quarterbacks though–not because they won’t try, but because other teams who need a quarterback worse, like the Redskins and Browns, will probably try harder.
So I guess that means our quarterback of the future is Mike Kafka then right?
If I’m Howie Roseman, I think I’m going to make a few phone calls come draft day.
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