Twitter Mailbag: Undue Pressure On Chip?

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Possible if there is a player they feel they just gotta  have. (Adam Caplan says that wide receiver Mike Evans is on the team’s radar.)But given that they only have six draft picks to begin with, I think there’s a greater chance we see the Eagles trade back in a round or two in the name of gathering more firepower.

“We’d certainly like to have more picks, there is no question about it,” Howie Roseman said at the owners meetings. “I think that’s something this time of year you’re always looking for. Sometimes that doesn’t happen until draft day.

“When we’re on the clock, it’s a very simple formula: If a player is there that rates with that selection based on our draft board and where we are, we’re going to take him. If we feel like there is a group of players that are kind of in the next tier and we have a trade back [proposal], we’re going to look at the trade back. It’s hard to know until draft day if those scenarios will come to fruition.”

Not banking on it.  Right now the starters are Jeremy Maclin and Riley Cooper. I couldn’t even tell you who the third receiver is. Here are the other wideouts currently on the roster:

Arrelious Benn
B.J. Cunningham
Damaris Johnson
Jeff Maehl
Ifeanyi Momah
Will Murphy
Brad Smith

I guess you could say Benn is the next man in, but I need to see the guy make it through the summer healthy before I even begin to consider him an option. Smith is entering his ninth NFL season, and has never had more than 325 yards in a season during his pro career. Maybe one of the other guys will be a surprise contributor, but I can’t sell you on any of them with confidence.

They will no doubt take a receiver in the draft, but as Sheil pointed out, you can’t rely on rookie receivers to be instant difference-makers. There is typically a maturation process involved. It should be noted that most of the receivers in this draft are underclassmen and therefor might need a little extra seasoning before they hit their stride.

Chip Kelly has a handful of tight ends and a receiving back in Darren Sproles that he can lean on. But the decision to move on from DeSean Jackson has left them quite thin at receiver. He better hope the top guys stay healthy.

If Kelly is feeling any pressure based on the 0ffseason moves/non-moves, he has himself to thank. Jeff Lurie said he would have opened up the check book if his head coach thought acquiring Jairus Byrd was the right course of action, but Kelly went in a different direction and instead made a handful of mid to lower-tier signings. If Kelly wanted Jackson here, he would be here. I don’t think Howie Roseman will walk into Kelly’s office and try to dictate the roster to him any time soon.

I agree that we’re not looking at the finished product. There is the draft, of course. I would also keep an eye on the trade front. The defensive side of the ball feels incomplete, and there is only so much they can accomplish in this draft. I would not be surprised if they were aggressive in their pursuits if a player they like becomes available.

No question Kelly and his system are in the spotlight this season. He cut ties with one of his top offensive players, and is betting that the team can still move onward and upward. Kelly’s machine kept humming in college even as the roster and quarterbacks changed. He had to use three QBs at one point or another last season and the offense still managed to set a bunch of franchise records. He is obviously confident in his system, and has a track record that suggests his confidence is justified.

This is a big test, though. Kelly has often said that this game is all about having good players, and he just cut one of his top talents. Very curious to see how it all plays out.