EAGLES OFFSEASON GRADE
Phil Sheridan, of ESPN, had an article published where he goes in-depth of his opinion of his Eagles offseason grade. He has been analyzing moves made by franchises and he gave Chip Kelly a C for his roster reconstruction. Although a C appears to be negative, Sheridan explains why it can turn into an A.
Sheridan came to the conclusion that the Eagles have too many questions to be completely optimistic or dismissive of what Kelly has done. “That is not C as in average,” Sheridan emphasized. “That is C as in halfway between A for outstanding and an F for failure.” Most Eagles fans will disagree with the overall grade, but it is difficult to dispute what Sheridan is saying. This Eagles team does have a plethora of questions as it pertains to the health of several players. And as Eagles fans know all too well, thanks to the 2011 “Dream Team”, acquiring talented players does not always transition to the expected production.
SHERIDAN’S MAIN POINTS
- Best move: signing DeMarco Murray. He applauds Kelly for replacing LeSean McCoy while also stealing the Cowboys’ player most responsible for their 2014 division crown.
- Riskiest Move: Releasing two veteran starting guards. Kelly released Todd Herremans and Evan Mathis, but is apparent with his optimism for their replacements, Allen Barbre, Andre Gardener, and Matt Tobin.
- Most puzzling move: “the Eagles didn’t sign or draft a true safety”: Kelly signed Walter Thurmond who has played the majority of his career at corner. Thurmond was playing safety during the OTA’S and was impressive, making plays every practice.
Sheridan made some solid points and his assessment of the Eagles’ offseason was well explained and made sense. However, not every fan is going to agree with Sheridan so the purpose of this article is to offer a different perspective on the Eagles’ new look roster.
Best move: Trading RB, LeSean McCoy for ILB, Kiko Alonso. The average person would’ve believed the apocalypse was occurring in the City Of Brotherly Love after this trade was announced. Fans were outraged, not knowing the reasoning behind the trade. After Kelly began putting in pieces to his puzzle, Philly fans stood corrected with their criticism of Kelly. First, the Birds acquired an elite ILB, in Kiko Alonso, who is still playing under his rookie contract. Trading McCoy also opened cap space for Kelly to sign CB, Byron Maxwell. The validation of the trade was the Eagles signing DeMarco Murray and Ryan Mathews to replace Shady.
Riskiest Move: Trading Nick Foles for Sam Bradford. The lone reason for not giving Kelly an A pertains to the health of Sam Bradford. After the 2013 season Nick Foles seemed to have proven to every Eagles fan that he was the future. After regressing in 2014, Kelly decided to trade Foles for Sam Bradford. When healthy Bradford is an upgrade to Foles, but the issue is health with Bradford. He has an extensive injury history that includes consecutive season being ended with an ACL tear. The risk was giving up on Foles. Disregarding his rookie campaign, Foles has put up impressive numbers. He has 18 regular season starts over the previous two seasons, throwing for 5,054 yards, completing 61.8% of his passes, and posting a touchdown-to-interception ratio of 40-12. The Eagles were 14-4 over Foles’ last 18 starts. Eagles fans better hope Bradford stays healthy; otherwise, they’re stuck with Mark Sanchez.
Most puzzling Move: Signing Tim Tebow. Tebow was the cherry on top of the Eagles’ chaotic offseason. Right when you thought the madness was over, Kelly proceeded to sign the most polarizing player in the NFL. No one could comprehend what led Kelly to signing Tebow, but fans may begin to see the silver lining very soon. Tebow is the biggest threat of the quarterbacks roster running read option offense. Also, Tebow’s bruising running style can be used towards improving the Eagles’ red zone offense, that ranked 23rd in 2014.
JENKINS OPTIMISM TOWARDS THE NEW LOOK EAGLES
Malcolm Jenkins has established himself as a leader on and off the field and he is eager to prove that the Eagles are back to being elite. In an interview after practice, Jenkins answered questions regarding to the talent on the Eagles roster. The statement Jenkins was told was “You need talent to win in the NFL,” and Jenkins conducted his own interview right back. “If you looked at our roster would you say that we’re talented?” The interviewer admitted “I would, yes.” Jenkins also proclaimed “If you look at all our positions I think we’re more talented this year then we were last year personally, and I think we also have a better fit when you talk about guys. And so when you put that all together I think that makes your team better overall.”