Eagles Wake-Up Call: Trade Deadline Approaches

Philadelphia Eagles running back Dion Lewis.The NFL trade deadline will likely come and go today at 4 p.m. (EST) without much of a splash.

What are the chances the Eagles make a deal?

The answer is probably slim, but don’t rule out the possibility altogether. Scanning the roster, you can certainly find areas where the Birds could use some help. Offensive line and safety depth are the two that come to mind. A good special-teams player, regardless of position, would be helpful also. The problem is teams are unlikely to unload quality players who can contribute right away at this point in the season.

As for the Eagles, running back and defensive line are a couple areas where they could look to deal someone. Dion Lewis, for example, has been inactive for six of seven games, as Bryce Brown continues to serve as the team’s backup running back. Chris Polk has played special teams only and has not produced there for Bobby April. My guess is either guy could probably be had, but would a team give something up for Lewis or Polk? I’m not so sure.

On the defensive line, one name to keep an eye on is Darryl Tapp. Tapp has filled in for Trent Cole at right defensive end and has played 31.6 percent of the Eagles’ defensive snaps, per Pro Football Focus. But Jim Washburn could give those snaps to Brandon Graham, Phillip Hunt or second-round pick Vinny Curry, who has yet to dress for a game this season.

Also keep in mind that the Eagles currently have 10 defensive linemen on their 53-man roster. They could very well add Mike Patterson (returned to practice last week) soon. Eleven would be a lot to keep, so you could see a preemptive move here.

The Eagles have made a trade (or tried to make a trade) near the deadline in each of the past three seasons. Last year, they tried to trade Ronnie Brown to the Lions for Jerome Harrison, but Harrison was diagnosed with a brain tumor, and the deal didn’t go through. In 2010, they traded Mike Bell to Cleveland for Harrison. And in 2009, they sent a draft pick and wide receiver Brandon Gibson to the Rams in exchange for linebacker Will Witherspoon.

So don’t rule out the possibility of the Eagles making a move today.

WHAT YOU MISSED

Tim and I went All-22 crazy yesterday. He broke down Nnamdi Asomugha’s performance from last week, and I took a look at why the Eagles’ offense was a mess.

Andy Reid announced that Michael Vick will start Monday night against the Saints.

Here’s the weekly roundup of what the national media are saying about the Eagles.

And finally, Tim wonders whether Jeffrey Lurie was listening to the fans at the Linc last week.

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING

Don Banks of SI.com has the Eagles 16th in his power rankings:

The Eagles’ problems at offensive line create so many ripple effects, but one of them is a passing game that doesn’t seem to challenge anyone vertically any more. Most of what Michael Vick has time to complete is underneath these days, and that means it takes Philly going on long and methodical drives to score. And given Vick’s penchant for mistakes in the season’s first seven games, long, methodical drives are in short supply.

Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com, a former scout for the Eagles, thinks it might be time to give Nick Foles a shot:

Vick played soundly in the final four games of the 2011 season. He made quick decisions, protected the football and took what the defense gave him. He utilized tight end Brent Celek and took advantage of opposing safeties lining up extremely deep. I thought that I would see that version of Michael Vick this season, but that hasn’t been the case. In 2012, Vick hasn’t been getting the ball out on time. He’s forcing too many throws into coverage and failing to protect the ball as a runner.

There has been a lot of speculation that Eagles coach Andy Reid could make a change at quarterback in the very near future. Rookie signal-caller Nick Foles played well during the preseason; now might be the right time to see what he can do in a regular-season setting.

COMING UP

The Eagles are back at Novacare preparing for the Saints. We’ll hear from Andy Reid and the players, so be sure to check back early and often.

Follow Sheil Kapadia on Twitter and e-mail him at skapadia@phillymag.com.
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  • The Guru

    Seriously, who is going to give you anything for Tapp, Polk, or Lewis? They are players 51, 52, 53 of your roster. No one wants them….including the Eagles.

    • http://twitter.com/THEKID_ Mike Jehle

      Typical Reid…has always overvalued the “talent” he’s drafted or signed. Some times however he does get teams to bite (AJ Feely, Kolb, Reggie Brown).

  • Jalarsen

    Rather than trading for quality talent, I would hope the Eagles would trade away some talent (thinking underachieving dline men past their prime) for draft picks. It likely won’t happen since Reid has to win now, but this team hasn’t showed me anything to make me believe they’re competing this year.

  • Beavis

    Question for SK/TM, why aren’t there more deadline deals in the NFL? Trade deadline day is always a huge news day for MLB, NBA and NHL … but nothing in the NFL (not to mention we rarely see blockbuster trades during the off-season). Is it mostly a question of salaries or is it roster flexibility? I’ve always wondered.

    • The Guru

      Usually the trade deadline is too early so teams still think they have a shot….like the Eagles. They’re unlikely to trade away talent when they still think they can make a run.

  • Gino brown

    First off the eagles arnt going to the playoffs an no nick foles isn’t gonna do anything either that has to be the worst line in the nfl an I don’t blame Vick at all when ur we arnt getting open it’s hard to throw the ball n when u hike the ball an there is already three people in ur face u no something’s wrong an no foles would probably do event worse u can not cant no but a rookie behind that line no no I’m gonna correct myself u can’t put any qb behind that line in the nfl an if Reid can’t see that I think it’s time to tell him bye bye

    • defroe81

      actually we dont have the worst line in the nfl but you keep thinking that so you hero has an excuse…

  • Gino brown

    I support Vick all the way lets go eagles