Update: According to Jason Cole, the Rams “want [Mark] Sanchez” but probably won’t get him, presumably because the Eagles value him and would want a lot in return.
The big news in the NFL this afternoon is that Rams quarterback Sam Bradford is out for the year with a torn ACL, according to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen.
That affects the Eagles in a couple different ways. For starters, the Eagles host the Rams in Week 5. But perhaps more interestingly, St. Louis could be in the market for a quarterback, and a couple national writers think the Eagles could get a call:
— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) August 24, 2014
If there’s one trade target makes sense for the Rams, if Bradford is out for any period of time, I’d say it’d be Eagles QB Mark Sanchez.
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) August 24, 2014
Mark Sanchez is familiar with Jets offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer from their time together with the Jets. Barkley, meanwhile, is scheduled to start Thursday night’s game against the Jets. As Brandon Lee Gowton of Bleeding Green Nation pointed out on Twitter, Jeff Fisher admitted in the offseason that the Rams had interest in Sanchez.
Chip Kelly was asked recently about what he’d say if a team were to call about Sanchez.
“What are you giving me? We’ll listen to anything for anybody,” Kelly said. “We’re not just gonna bury our head in the sand and say no, but there better be a pretty good deal in terms of what it is. But that’s not any of our thought process. I think we need him, in terms of how he’s playing right now, how he can function with what we’re doing. And I’ve always said you need two quarterbacks.”
The guess here? Nothing gets done. It’s tough to imagine the Eagles’ asking price matching up with what the Rams think Sanchez is worth as a one-year rental.
ADDING A DIME PACKAGE
Last year, the Eagles only played a handful of snaps in dime (one LB, four CBs and two safeties). But they have been working on that package and showcased it Thursday night against the Steelers.
“It’s really another tool that the coaching staff now has to defend multiple receiver personnel groups. If we have a tight end that’s always releasing, you can go to that package,” Billy Davis said. “A lot of teams have the tight end that is still intact and still can run the ball. So you move in and out of nickel/dime, and you see who they are, who you are, what your matchups are like. It’s great to have that other tool in place to activate to help us get off the field on third down.”
The one linebacker on the field would be Mychal Kendricks. Assuming health, the four corners would be Cary Williams, Bradley Fletcher, Brandon Boykin and Nolan Carroll II.
BARNER GETS UP TO SPEED
The Eagles traded for Kenjon Barner Tuesday night. By Thursday, he was in the lineup returning kicks and running the football (seven carries).
But the former Oregon Duck said playing running back for Chip Kelly in college and the NFL is different.
“I thought it was gonna be exactly the same, but it’s not,” said Barner. “How I was able to get in the game was cause I spent almost all day with coach [Duce] Staley, going over stuff, studying the playbook up until probably 9:30, 10 at night. We were at the hotel, I’m on the phone with him, I’m calling him, ‘OK, so what do I do on this? So if this happens, what do I do on this?’ It’s completely different. It was very uncomfortable to be in a situation where you didn’t know what you were doing and then have to go out there and play.”
Barner carried seven times for 32 yards. He should see plenty of action Thursday night against the Jets.