Twitter Mailbag: On Roseman, Geno And Vick

 Every Thursday we select a few of your Twitter questions and provide the long-form answers they deserve. For a chance to have your question published on Birds 24/7, send it to @Tim_McManus.

From @riggitty: would the eagles take a chance on Geno Smith if he’s available?

A lot depends on what they think of Nick Foles by the end of the season. If they believe Foles can develop into an above-average quarterback, then I doubt it. If they come to the conclusion that his ceiling is not very high, all options come onto the table.

I don’t pretend to know whether Geno Smith will be a good NFL quarterback. Same for Matt Barkley. But I am also hesitant to sway with the ever-changing winds of public sentiment. Barkley was a sure-fire stud. Now he’s not. After the combine, maybe his stock rebounds. Who knows.

Bottom line, elite quarterbacks are the rarest commodity on the planet. If you think you have found one, snatch him up — even if Mel Kiper  and 89 percent of the sane world disagrees.

From @TomMcKennaNJ: Any chance Howie Roseman loses his job or at least personnel responsibilities?

There is always the possibility that this collapse has shaken Jeffrey Lurie to his core and he changes direction, but the plan heading in was to keep Roseman around and I believe he sticks to that.

One thing we don’t have a full understanding of is how much of what went wrong over the past two seasons falls on Roseman’s lap. Take, for instance, the 2010 and 2011 drafts. The draft is Roseman’s baby and he owns some of the responsibility. But how much? Remember at the time he had both Andy Reid and Joe Banner above him. Who wanted Danny Watkins? Jaiquawn Jarrett? On what picks was he overruled?

Is the 2012 draft evidence of what he can do when he has more control?

Few people know these answers, but Lurie is one of them.

From @BDAWG_30: Sucks #Birds are one year too late with this collapse; could be rolling w/ RG3 & Bryce Brown combo out of the Pistol #RG3MVP

Way to depress Eagles Nation, B-Dawg!

Remember when news of the Eagles’ pursuit of RGIII and Peyton Manning created a stir? There was even some debate whether it was the right thing to do. Just think if the Eagles were able to pull either one of those deals off now. Manning might be helping Reid make one final charge; RGIII would have the city drunk with excitement about the next decade of Eagles football.

The Redskins were questioned for giving up a king’s ransom to move up and select RGIII. What team wouldn’t do that deal now?

From @derfdy: What’s the order of operations regarding the QB situation with the Eagles now? Do they hire a coach first? Release Vick? Draft?

One of my favorite questions to ponder. The way I understand it, the Eagles have to cut Vick before February 6 to avoid paying the quarterback $3 million. There is a decent chance they have a head coach in place by then. If that’s the case, all the powers that be can weigh their options and then decide on how to proceed at QB.

What if the search drags on and there is still no coach by the deadline? Would they take the financial hit in order to allow the eventual head coach to have a say, or make their own judgment?

I am of the opinion that the head coach should absolutely be not just a voice but the voice when it comes to an on-field decision as critically important as how to move forward at quarterback. If he doesn’t get that opportunity, it will tell us much.

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Twitter Mailbag: Who Will Be the Next Head Coach?

Every Thursday we select a few of your Twitter questions and provide the long-form answers they deserve. For a chance to have your question published on Birds 24/7, send it to @Tim_McManus.

From @DaPinoyboy: I think that they will be more cuts coming. Agree or disagree?# 64kquestion

I will disagree. Some think Nnamdi Asomugha will be cut before the season is out, but there is a big difference between his situation and Babin’s: money. The Eagles cut Babin and it didn’t cost them a dime. Asomugha has $4 million guaranteed next year. Maybe he is eventually released this offseason, but it makes sense that they try and restructure his contract before going down that road.

I did find the Babin move interesting, though, because of what it tells us. It is a fairly significant decision to cut someone  who has 23.5 sacks over his last 27 games. It makes sense to part ways, but it’s a pretty big decision nonetheless. To make a personnel call like this before the next head coach is in place makes you think about what the power structure will be like moving forward. And will they wait until the next head coach is here before ruling on the quarterback situation?

From @ssteiner13:  If Bryce Brown has a strong rest of the season and fixes the fumbling, would you consider trading Shady? (I would.)

Pump the breaks, steiner. McCoy is 24 and one of the best backs in the league. Plus, think of the possibilities.

Let’s daydream for a second and run with the notion that the next head coach of the Eagles is a far bigger fan of the run game than Andy Reid. And what if the offense was built around a pair of marquee backs, running behind an improved line thanks to the return of Jason Peters, Jason Kelce and Todd Herremans, and the addition of a high draft pick. The quarterback, whoever that might be, would be more of a game manager, living off play-action.

Sounds pretty good, right? If Brown continues to show what he did Monday night, I don’t know why that can’t be the Eagles’ reality.

From @AdamHunke: My position needs list (in order) QB, S, CB, WR. Yours?

I’ll flop safety ahead of quarterback for the simple fact that the Eagles probably need to upgrade both safety positions. At least there is a modicum of hope that the solution at quarterback is in-house. Sheil addresses the potential overhaul at the corner and safety positions here. I agree with you on receiver.

I’ll add tight end to the equation as well. Brent Celek plays through a lot of pain and it’s going to catch up with him (maybe it already has?). And Clay Harbor hasn’t shown enough. Offensive line depth is a need as well.

OK, everywhere. They need help everywhere.

 From @yogirlchoseme24: who will be our next coach?

Like the handle, by the way.

One thing I keep going back to is Joe Banner‘s comments to the Cleveland Plain Dealer about what he looks for in a head coach.

When we hired Andy Reid in Philadelphia we did a study on every coach who had led a team to two Super Bowls (appearances) to find the common denominator. We went in looking for things like offensive philosophy, did they come from defense, did they come from college? Had they been a coordinator? We found nothing. Then we accidentally realized they were all exactly the same when we took football out of the equation — they were all incredibly strong leaders, they all had hired great staffs, they managed them well and were all very detail-oriented.

Jeffrey Lurie was part of that search and Howie Roseman studied under Banner, so expect them to use a similar method of thinking.

Finding someone who can win games and help run an organization is obviously priority number one, but they will also be looking  for someone that the city can identify with. The Eagles are aware of the divide that a lot of the fan base feels when it comes to their team, and are determined to rekindle the love affair. Nothing is more important in that effort than finding a (winning) head coach whose philosophies on the field and temperament off it mesh with the spirit of the city.

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Twitter Mailbag: Can Foles Attract A Big-Name Coach?

Every Thursday we select a few of your Twitter questions and provide the long-form answers they deserve. For a chance to have your question published on Birds 24/7, send it to @Tim_McManus.

From @riggitty: Will Nick Foles intrigue any head coaching prospects if he performs well in a few starts this season?

Very good question. As Eagles fans get their head coaching wish lists ready, complete with the Bill Cowhers and Jon Grudens of the world, few pause to think if the interest would be mutual. Nothing is more important than having a quality quarterback in this league (something Sheil lays out well here). If the Eagles don’t have an attractive option at QB, why would a coach-in-demand choose the Eagles?

For that reason, I think it is critically important that Foles acquits himself well if the Eagles are going for the big name. The less desirable the quarterback situation looks, the better chance the Eagles will have to mine for a diamond assistant in the rough. But to be honest, I think that’s the direction they go in regardless.

From @JCentifonti: Could Roseman be bumped to President & they go after a new GM?

No, they promoted Don Smolenski to President back in June, around the same time Howie Roseman reportedly received his contract extension.

I am becoming more and more convinced that the Lurie-Smolenski-Roseman triumvirate will be in place to oversee the transition from the Reid Era to the new era. Lurie will need men that he trusts to guide the franchise where he wants it to go.

I am fascinated with how the Michael Vick situation will be handled. If Vick is still on the roster three days after the Super Bowl, $3 million of his salary becomes guaranteed. Chances are, the Eagles won’t have a head coach in place by then. Would Roseman and Lurie make the call to release Vick without first consulting with their head coach to be?

The answer will tell us a lot.

From @BrandonSlagle27: I was looking at the nyg and dal sched. Do you think it’s possible to win the NFC east with a 9-7 record or even possibly 8-8?

Here’s what each NFC East team is facing the rest of the way:

Giants (6-4): Packers, @Redskins, Saints, @Falcons, @Ravens, Eagles
Cowboys (4-5): Browns, Redskins, Eagles, @Bengals, Steelers, Saints, @Redskins
Eagles (3-6): @Redskins, Panthers, @Cowboys, @Bucs, Bengals, Redskins, @Giants
Redskins (3-6):  Eagles, @Cowboys, Giants, Ravens, @Browns, @Eagles, Cowboys

A couple things that stand out: The Giants face a pretty tough slate starting next week against Green Bay. The Cowboys have maybe the easiest schedule, especially considering that they have just two road games the rest of the way. The Eagles have just two games remaining against teams with winning records (Giants, Bucs).

The second half of the season is backloaded with division games. Yeah, I can see 9-7 winning the NFC East. Definitely possible.

From @phillytokorea: who is the Eagle player that has the most upside? A potential Pro Bowler?

I think Fletcher Cox is your guy. The eye is not naturally drawn to the middle of the line so Cox does not get a ton of recognition, but he has shown some real nice flashes in the first half of his rookie season. It took no time at all before Cox was Jim Washburn‘s most-used defensive tackle.

He is a bright spot in a down season, and one reason to be optimistic if you’re an Eagles fan.

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Twitter Mailbag: Does Reid Have An Out?

Philadelphia Eagles Head Coach Andy Reid.Every Thursday we select a few of your Twitter questions and provide the long-form answers they deserve. For a chance to have your question published on Birds 24/7, send it to @Tim_McManus.

From @Gaphillyfan: Do the mounting injuries give Reid a possible card to play at his ‘trial’?

We actually got Jeffrey Lurie on record regarding this issue back in August, when he made it known that another 8-8 season would not be enough to save Reid’s job. Lurie was asked if there were any qualifiers to that statement, particularly when it comes to injury.

“Yeah, I guess if two-thirds of the team is not playing [then] there are always exceptions,” is the way the Eagles owner responded.

The Jason Peters‘ injury had already occurred by that point, though clearly the offensive line has been completely decimated over the last several weeks. Evan Mathis is the last man standing from the original starting five.

“It’s a little weird. It’s like a Final Destination kind of thing. Hopefully I don’t get hit by a bus or anything,” Mathis joked.

Otherwise, this team has not had too many injuries to deal with. Michael Vick has played every snap and the defense has enjoyed relative good health. Jeremy Maclin and Nate Allen have missed some time, but nothing too serious. Offensive line is where they’ve been hit, and man have they been hit hard. But overall, Reid can’t make a case that Lurie will fall for. The owner knows he wouldn’t be able to sell it to the fans.

From @chiefmisnomer: what are the details of Nnamdi’s remaining contract? Will the Eagles be able to opt out after this season/for how much?

Asomugha  is due $15 million in 2013. My understanding is that only $4 million of that is guaranteed. So it looks like they can walk away from the remaining three years of the deal without too much damage. Is $4 million too much dead money to swallow if you’re the Eagles? Depends in part on the options to fill the void at right corner, I would imagine. Seeing as Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie is not under contract for next year currently, the Eagles have a couple big question marks at the position. It will be interesting to see how they handle it.

From @IrishTim74: does Danny Watkins act as a revolving door at any local hotels or is it just at Lincoln Financial Field?

See, that’s just not right.

From @chambersd12: Are we stuck w/ Howie as GM since his apparent contract extension? Do you actually trust him to make the coaching decision?

I thought Phil Sheridan did a nice job of putting Roseman’s contract extension in perspective.

Eating Roseman’s contract would make an imperceptible dent in Lurie’s fortune. It would cost less than some of the mistakes the franchise has made with player signing bonuses in the last few years.

And if you think Lurie would keep Roseman on just to avoid paying him for nothing, consider that Roseman is just 37 years old. He would want to continue his career in the NFL, which means he would vigorously pursue another job. If he lands one – and there is a guy in Cleveland who might be willing to take him on – Lurie is off the hook, anyway.

At the time of the extension, Lurie knew he was moving on from Joe Banner. Andy Reid’ future was up in the air. The intention was to move on with Roseman whether Reid survived the 2012 season or not. Otherwise, why give him a deal? It is possible that this season has changed Lurie’s view of Roseman or that a new head coaching hire could force the young GM out. But for right now, I’m operating under the assumption that Roseman is sticking around for the overhaul.

Will he do well in such a position of power? Impossible to know.

From @rock9449:  have the players stopped believing in Andy Reid?

Here’s how one player responded when I asked if the players still listen to Reid:

“Of course. Great coach. But when you are Commander in Chief you take the heat.”

I honestly have not heard anything contrary to that. If they have tuned him out, it’s subconsciously. Certain members of this team have not been shy about pointing the finger this year, but I have yet to see anyone point it at Reid.

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Twitter Mailbag: On Fans, Bowles And the Costanza Wallet

Philadelphia Eagles secondary coach Todd Bowles.

Every Thursday we select a few of your Twitter questions and provide the long-form answers they deserve. For a chance to have your question published on Birds 24/7, send it to @Tim_McManus.

From @riggitty: Why did Todd Bowles have such a rough first game at dc with so much time to prepare?

His promotion may have happened during the bye week, but I definitely don’t look at it as him having a lot of time to prepare. Just take Juan Castillo, for example. OK, so he was coming from the offensive side of the ball, but it took an entire season for the defense to get comfortable with his scheme. The beginning of last season was total chaos on defense.

The learning curve won’t be nearly as steep for Bowles, especially since he worked closely with Castillo and this unit up through the first six games. There was some obvious confusion early in that Atlanta game, though. Players were scrambling pre-snap trying to figure out exactly where they should be. They were caught out of position and were not sure-footed. It looked a lot like 2011, to be perfectly honest.

It should not come as a surprise that a change that big threw the ‘D’ off-kilter a bit. New voice, modified approach, new wrinkles. Maybe the defense will ultimately be better under Bowles, but it has to happen fast.

From @a_rizzo23: with most of the eagles starters under contract nxt yr, how can a new coach bring in his “own guys”?

A few things on this:

One, just because a player is under contract does not mean you have to keep him. The Eagles can part with Michael Vick after this season with minimal financial repercussions, for example. Seems likely they would cut ties with Jason Babin as well. You’re obviously not going to purge your entire roster. But just think about how different of a feel this team would have with those two moves alone.

A new coach would likely change most of  the staff as well. That probably means no Jim Washburn and no Wide 9. New coordinators. New approach.

Then there’s the philosophy shift. Every head coach has a style all their own, and will try and identify players that will best fit with that style. That doesn’t happen overnight, granted. There will be some weeding out and some building via the draft. But there are certainly ways to change the identity in fairly short order.


It’s true. Costanza’s got nothing on this bad boy:

Mike Missanelli did a bit on this once. During a commercial he asked to borrow a dime for the vending machine and I pulled this puppy out, started digging through it, and fished out the coin. He went back on the air and talked not only about the monstrosity above, but the fact that he cannot trust a man who carries change in his wallet.

And yes, it does throw my equilibrium off.

From @EClarke1: Why do Eagles players every year turn against the fans? are we too hard, or are they too soft?

Loaded question. My favorite.

In case you missed it, Jason Babin spoke Thursday about a faction of the fan base that was chanting “vile” things at the players and coaches during the Falcons game. Also this week, DeSean Jackson talked about how it feels like the fans are sometimes against them.

I look at it on a case-by-case basis. There are times when fans cross the line, like a few apparently did Sunday. No excuse for it, and it makes everyone else look bad.

It is rarely a good idea for a player to challenge the fans publicly, however. Telling a paying customer how to behave, particularly when the product is poor, is ill-advised. It never comes across right, even if well-intentioned.

The type of player that thrives in Philly is one that not only understands but appreciates how the fan base is wired. They are crazy and demanding, but only in the name of passion and frustration and caring. If you dig that, then you will look at these fans in the proper light. And you will know that calling them out only wounds them unnecessarily.

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