Howie Roseman's galavanting of full control of football operations continued yesterday as he packaged a king's ransom to Cleveland for the #2 overall pick in next week's NFL Draft. Let the Negadelphians rant! Now I have been a Philadelphia sports phan since birth. It is our duty as phans to whine, sulk, anger, and flat out oppose the actions of our beloved sports teams. It's what we do best! Decades of not quite good enough have developed this unique characteristic trait among us. And we certainly could play GM better than half the idiots in charge, or so we think.
As the trade with the Cleveland Browns became official yesterday I engaged in several group texts with friends, Eagles phans and others, all who equally labeled the trade bad. Among many other words used. Let's face it, the track record for teams giving up a bunch of picks to move up in the draft has rarely boded well (ie. RG3, Ricky Williams, Ryan Leaf).
The parade of college quarterbacks that the Eagles have met with in recent weeks showed the Eagles were serious about a QB for the future. And Wentz seemed to be the apple of Doug Pederson's eye. Labeling him "elite" during pre-draft sessions days before the trade.
There is plenty of reason to HATE the move. Already without a 2nd round pick in the 2016 Draft (thanks to another QB trade) the Eagles will now be without a 4th rounder as well. Not to mention a 1st rounder next year and a 2nd rounder in 2018. It's a ton to give up for a guy who four months ago I had never heard of. Heck even now I couldn't tell you a ton about the guy, other than he is big and super smart. Yesterday as the trade surfaced I was split on whether I liked it or hated it.
As the reality of the trade sunk in I started to like it more and more. As my brother described it, "it is a calculated risk." As I see it, I would much rather take that risk on the potential of Carson Wentz than bank on the arm of Sam Bradford. We can all agree that Sammy Sleeves was NOT going to win us a Super Bowl. So why not throw all of our chips on the table and see if we can't get our franchise guy in Carson Wentz. The last time this Eagles team was dominant, and Super Bowl caliber, was after drafting a guy #2 overall in the 1999 draft. Let's not forget it was also by a rookie head coach, former QB/Offensive Coordinator, named Andy Reid. The protege has become the mentor!
You do not win Super Bowls with mediocre quarterbacks, unless you have a ridiculously dominate defense. If the Eagles want to be relevant again, it will be on the shoulders of Carson Wentz. I've heard the argument that you are giving away too much or forfeiting the next few years but I don't necessarily buy into those arguments either. Yes we gave up picks but it really is only 3 draft picks spread out over the next 3 seasons. The idea that we will lose out on adding depth via those picks can be had but when spread out over 3 drafts it won't be hard to recoup. Looking across the Eagles depth chart as it sits and I don't see any glaring holes. Tackle, WR, RB, LB. But honestly nothing that jumps out at you like wow we are really bad at this position. Howie and company did a tremendous job of getting stronger in areas of weakness, particularly along the offensive line and safety. There is still a ton of talent on this team, young talent. Talent that will make the Eagles competitive in 2016 and moving forward when Wentz takes over.
I am acutely aware that Carson Wentz played Division 1-AA for North Dakota State. Playing against the likes of Montana and Indiana State. He wasn't playing against future NFL stars but he was dominant leading North Dakota State to the FCS Championship game both years as a starter. Winning player of the game in both championships.
Like I mentioned earlier Wentz is BIG, at 6'5 237 pounds he is a house to bring down. He stands up tall and poised in the pocket and has a big arm. Not to mention he ran a 4.77 40-yard dash and scored a 40 out of 50 on the Wonderlic test (20 being around the NFL average). The kid is super smart, Ray Didinger was quick to label him "almost brilliant." Wentz was a straight A 4.0 student, Valedictorian and President of the National Honor Society.
What that all boils down to is that Wentz has ALL the tools to be the franchise, Super Bowl leading, quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles. I can't tell you for certain that Wentz will be the guy but I know that the NFL Draft is a crapshoot. As much as it is a risk to gamble on Wentz being a stud, those 3 picks we gave away could just as easily be duds. I mean let's face it, it is the Cleveland Browns we are talking about!
When I look over the list of QB's taken #11 overall or better since 1998 there are plenty of studs and franchise QBs: Luck, Manning, Cam, McNabb, Eli Manning, Roethlisberger. There are plenty of middle of the road guys: Alex Smith, Jay Cutler, Ryan Tannehill, Michael Vick. And there are plenty of duds: Jamarcus Russell Matt Leinhart, Ryan Leaf.
So basically I have no idea whether or not Carson Wentz will be the guy to lead our Philadelphia Eagles to Super Bowl glory, but here's hoping that he is! Here's hoping that we all get over trading a bunch of picks with no names attached to it and put our money on the kid from Bismarck. Here's hoping that the LA Rams take Jared Goff and don't make this whole piece about nothing.