After surprisingly releasing UDFA QB Jamie Newman this past week, the Eagles are as light as feather at quarterback. The team usually carry three or four signal callers into camp and right now only have two on the roster. Here are five names they could well be considering on the free agent market.
Nick Mullens went undrafted back in 2018 and ended up spending three years with the San Francisco 49ers. This turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Injuries plagued the position and afforded Mullens 16 total starts and 19 appearances over those three seasons, accounting for 25 touchdowns and 22 interceptions on top of 4,714 yards in that span.
The Southern Miss product completed 64.7% of his passes in 2020, a season in which he stared 8 games. This is quite important. Mullens is battle tested to a point where he’s experienced the highs and lows of an NFL season (still rehabbing an injured shoulder) and has very recently started for half of one. Not many young QB’s bring that kind of resume to the table and he may have just enough in terms of upside for QB Coach Brian Johnson to work with.
He might not be the most accurate quarterback in the world, but he has been known to pull off the occasional upset. Having just turned 26, the Eagles would be getting a player who is still relatively young in his development and is clearly the best remaining free agent QB.
Kenji Bahar is an interesting player. He went undrafted this year and just like Jamie Newman, was waived before he really even got a chance to get going after catching on with the Ravens.
Bahar graduated from Monmouth University so is relatively local and we know the Eagles have developed an affinity for players with local ties or who have family members connected with the team, be it having played for them or simply root for them.
During his time at Monmouth, he broke the school records for touchdown passes (70), passing yards (9,642), and 300-yard games (9). At 6’3, 190 lbs, he’s got a solid build, some nice athletic ability which he flashed by rushing for 11 total career touchdowns, and isn’t afraid to let it rip and show off his arm talent.
This would probably make the most sense from a developmental standpoint being that Bahar is from the same QB class as Newman so would theoretically tick many of the same boxes provided he can stick onto the roster.
Sean Mannion/Brett Hundley
I feel like both of these players can be placed under the same header. Both have been multi-year backups and have been viewed as developmental arms. Brett Hundley obviously has three years of experience behind Aaron Rodgers) and Mannion has two games of regular season experience under his belt. Mannion is very much the Rams version of what Nate Sudfeld was, with his game-time predominantly coming in week 17 affairs.
Neither would be locks to make the roster or even act as direct competition to someone like Joe Flacco. However, they would be serviceable enough to work through Training Camp and help elevate the third or fourth string units, which at least gives them a lifeline.
I’m saying this purely as someone that had a bizarre QB crush on the Stanford product during the 2016 NFL Draft. This was to the point where I even pitched the idea (pre-trade up) of moving back and taking a CB/WR and then picking up Hogan in the heart of the Draft as a developmental option behind Sam Bradford. Oh, what a world that would’ve been.
Anyway, Hogan is now currently a free agent but has done more than your average backup since being drafted in the fifth-round five years ago.
Having spent time with the Browns, Washington Football Team, and the Broncos, Hogan has put together a fairly impressive resume. He has eight appearances under his belt, completing 60/101 passes for 621 yards, 4 touchdowns and 7 interceptions, while rushing for a further 176 yards and a touchdown.
The big knock on Hogan has always been his weird throwing motion and how it can heavily impact the way the ball comes out, especially under pressure. This leads to a lot of misfires (evidenced by the pick count), but if this can somehow be corrected (after five years…) then it’s worth taking shot on a player who quite literally defines the term ‘project quarterback’.
The Eagles did work him out once upon a time too, but that was a different coaching staff.
Robert Griffin III
RGIII‘s career will forever be documentary worthy. From his rise to stardom as a Baylor Bear to his burst onto the NFL scene in Washington and every bump and bruised that then followed, Griffin is still potentially a player worth considering.
After going 1-4 with the Browns in 2016 and spending 2017 out of the league, Griffin caught on with the Baltimore Ravens where he would spend the next three years as a backup. He filled in for Lamar Jackson in week 12 against the Steelers last year and looked extremely rusty, but he does have a near-identical skillset to Jalen Hurts, if not a little tarnished.
If the Eagles want a QB who can run the same offense and present the defense with similar challenges as a scout team member would, then RGIII could be a former all-pro veteran who could walk in and share plenty of knowledge with those around him.
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