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From @MKevinBonner: Are the Eagles planning to sign a vet backup QB or will they roll with Barkley? ?
Michael Vick is scheduled to visit with the Jets Friday. Seems like a very logical landing spot to me. If he’s off the market, the top five available quarterbacks (per Rotoworld) are Josh Freeman, Shaun Hill, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Kevin Kolb (who is expected to retire) and Colt McCoy. I don’t see anyone who would be an obvious choice over Barkley, who the Eagles seem to have some confidence in. They’ll see how the draft plays out and pick a QB if it makes sense. If not, they’ll have to go with a vet to compete with Barkley for the No. 2 spot behind Nick Foles. I’d put Barkley as the front-runner for now, though.
From @AntMarella: please Tim, give us some clarity on the DeSean situation. What do you KNOW?!
(Sorry to those of you that are DeSean'd out. But the majority of the questions were about this topic, so I'm going to try and provide clarity the best I can.)
From my reporting on this I learned that Jackson had caught wind of the write-ups suggesting that he was on his way out of Philadelphia, and was upset by them. He wants to be here, didn't think he was portrayed accurately in some of the pieces, and it brought up some concern regarding his standing with the team. That concern is being fueled by the fact that the Eagles have not offered any assurances. From what I understand, the team hadn't been in direct contact with the receiver as of Tuesday.
I think it's right to say that the media is partially responsible for the firestorm. It was speculation that prompted Jackson's initial worries, rumors beget rumors, and the conflicting information being put out in recent days makes it feel like this thing is bouncing in a hundred directions. That's different than saying this is a media fabrication, however.
Two questions to consider: 1) What is at the root of the speculation? and 2) Why have the Eagles sat idly by and watched this story mushroom?
My best explanation for first part is to say that there is a persistent buzz suggesting something is up. Whether it be from agents, people with connections to the team or other media members, there has been enough chatter to raise antennas. Yet, at least personally speaking, nothing concrete enough to declare that anything is imminent. Derrick Gunn's recent report pushed the notion that the Eagles are considering moving on from Jackson a step further.
The second part is the most curious of all. I have heard the theory that the Eagles are trying to send a message to Jackson by allowing the rumor to live and grow, but I don't buy it. Jackson was as engaged as he's ever been last season; had the best year he's ever had. Why are they intentionally tweaking him again? Because he suggested that he wouldn't mind some more security in his contract at an inopportune time? Because he got into a verbal spat with his receivers coach? I don't see it.
It's possible that Chip Kelly simply doesn't feel the need to respond, which would be a miscalculation.
The more likely scenario is that the Eagles haven't issued a flat denial or contacted the wideout because they are at least exploring the idea of moving on from Jackson. The longer they remain silent on this front, the more weight that theory seems to hold. There is a good chance that Jackson sees it that way as well.
That's what I know. The picture isn't fully formed, but there is enough there that we can't just dismiss it out of hand. I hope to have more answers soon.
From @PhillyFreck215: this draft is very deep do you see the birds trading for more picks?
This is another part of the broader picture that doesn't fully add up. This is a loaded draft by most accounts and the Eagles currently only have six picks. Howie Roseman would undoubtedly feel more comfortable going in with more. But where to get them?
Brandon Graham only has a year left on his deal so I think it will be tough to convince a team to part ways with a draft pick for him. Not sure you can get anything of great value for Bryce Brown. I believe Vinny Curry is staying put. I suppose trading Jackson is one way to do it, though that seems extreme to me. The other would be to trade back in a round or two to add to the stockpile.
One way or another I think they end up with more than six when all is said and done.