For what feels like the 60th time this offseason, the Philadelphia Eagles have been linked with Deshaun Watson. Each report is becoming more nonsensical than the last and all seem to ignore the biggest and most obvious of red flags. If the idea of acquiring Watson is still appealing, here’s an article that should hopefully deflate that very weird pipe dream.
It’s morally wrong
Above anything else let’s discuss the Elephant in the room. It’s something that is being evaded for some reason when these rumors are continually shovelled out on Radio and national networks, probably because if it was anything but skimmed over, it would be very easy to dispel the idea of a trade.
As of right now, Deshaun Watson is facing 20 civil suits that allege sexual assault. 20. Every single one of those victims, who have now attached their names to their case, will currently see the name of the man who allegedly assaulted them being paraded around in trade talks like nothing ever happened. Is that not the entire problem with cases like this and why women who have been assaulted struggle to find the confidence to come forward?
This is not an article to debate the legitimacy of the 22 claims against Watson because none of us truly know the extent of the claims or how honest they are. But if they are indeed true, then posting any kind of trade-related rumor is morally disgusting.
I highly doubt members of the Eagles organization are sat around having coffee saying things like ‘yeah, if he’s innocent then we’re absolutely trading for him!’. I understand why the Eagles or any NFL team would be interested in acquiring Watson, but for that interest to be noted when the man is facing 20 separate claims of sexual assault is extremely disrespectful to those affected by his alleged actions.
If there is legitimate interest from the Eagles here, then they’re not going to make a move with all of this going on for a million very obvious reasons. The fact that this is a narrative that is continuously pumped out In a way that says ‘if he’s innocent then the Eagles are in’ ignoring all other basic logic is as ridiculous as it is ignorant.
Copy & Paste
One year ago, the Philadelphia Eagles drafted Jalen Hurts in the second round of the NFL Draft. Less than a year later, the man they once paid $127M was thrown to the side of the road after a tumultuous season. There’s no denying that the arrival of Hurts knocked wind out of the sails of Carson Wentz from a mental perspective. It looks like a new leaf has been turned in Philadelphia and acquiring Watson would simply be hitting copy and paste on the same formula that acted as a catalyst for an implosion like no other.
Even if Jalen Hurts was to be included in the trade, it hardly sends the right message to Watson, who would technically be the third starting quarterback for the Eagles within the space of 6 games. For a team that decided to rip away any sense of stability they previously had, doing so again just as the dust is beginning to settle makes very little sense.
Salary cap slalom
In terms of a rebuilding process, shipping Wentz away to take on a contract that’s just as damaging would be beyond perplexing. Deshabille Watson may be one of the league’s most exciting quarterback talents, but the Eagles selected Jalen hurts less than one year ago and as a result have three very cheap rookie years to utilize while they solidify the rest of the franchise.
Watson’s $15M cap hit already feels unattainable now that the Eagles have cleared about as much space as they physically can without shipping off what little elite talent remains. His $40M cap hit in 2022 would be absolutely horrifying for a team that is estimated to have around $30M in cap space.
It undoes every offseason move
It’s clear the Eagles are building for the future and buying themselves contingency plans. In trading the sixth overall pick to move back to 12, the team acquired a future first-round pick from the Dolphins. When you add that to the probable first attained in the Wentz trade, then the Eagles are sitting pretty with three first-rounders going into the 2022 NFL Draft.
They are perfectly situated to either surround Jalen Hurts with an offense of first-round playmakers, or potentially rally up enough steam to acquire their QB of the future if the former second-round pick struggles to show he’s ready to take control of the franchise this season. Trading for Deshaun Watson abolishes that logic completely and instead thrusts the Eagles back into the desperation mode of having to win immediately.
The Eagles need to accept that their Super Bowl window has closed. The longer they fight to keep it open, the further away from a new one they’ll be. It looks as though the penny has dropped for Howie Roseman, but the allure of Deshaun Watson is seemingly enough to keep the GM looking over his shoulder. That cannot be the case if this team is to ever fully progress and expedite a new era of Football.
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