Eagles Wake-Up Call: Leftovers From Pederson, Roseman
Here are a few lingering thoughts and notes following Monday’s 45-minute pre-draft media session with Howie Roseman and Doug Pederson:
*I found Pederson’s comments on Carson Wentz versus Jared Goff interesting. The new head coach said he thought the prospects were “pretty even” and feels both have potential to be franchise quarterbacks, but twice referenced Goff’s size (6-4, 215) relative to Wentz (6-5, 237) and at one point Paxton Lynch (6-7, 244), and called Wentz “a little better athlete right now.” He talked Wentz up on a number of occasions, but Goff not so much.
This is a time of misdirection and smokescreens and all that, but here’s where my head’s at:
There is a good chance that front offices around the league have a pretty good feel for which quarterback the Rams plan on selecting with the No. 1 overall pick, even if the media is still not firmly on the scent. It’s also true that some people within the NovaCare walls feel that Goff will be L.A.’s pick. Assuming that’s the intel Pederson has received, his comments make all the more sense. If he knew Wentz was going off the board first and the Eagles could possibly end up with Goff, why call Wentz the better athlete and refer to Goff as “undersized” compared to the other two? Wouldn’t you be inclined to talk well of a player that may end up on your roster?
Maybe Pederson is playing the shell game, but I’d bet against it. In my limited exposure to him he’s come off as pretty forthcoming. And who would he be trying to fool? The Rams are taking who they’re taking, the Eagles would presumably pluck whichever top QB is still available if they traded into the second slot, and that would be that. I don’t think he’s playing games, but I also don’t think he’d publicly elevate one QB prospect over another that he could be coaching in a matter of weeks.
*I’ve become more and more curious about Jeffrey Lurie‘s level of involvement when it comes to the football side of things and whether he’s taken on a greater role in recent months.
From the pre-game address prior to the Patriots game back in early December to the coy hand-raising at Pederson’s press conference when asked who casts the tie-breaking vote when it comes to personnel decisions, it’s at least worth exploring whether his role has evolved of late. When asked at the owners meetings if he has become more hands-on, Lurie responded: “I think what I try to be is very hands-on and not very public about it and sort of the focus is not on me…”
Lurie did catch some attention by joining the traveling committee to check out all the quarterback prospects over the last several weeks. Pederson said Lurie offered his opinion on the prospects when out on the road.
“Just to hear a different side of it, maybe someone who is not in the day-to-day activities of coaching the football team, and just to hear kind of the outsider’s perspective with a lot of great wisdom and a lot of good knowledge,” said Pederson on the benefits of having Lurie as part of the process, “because he does study that position and he looks at that position hard.”
*Chip Kelly is big on measurables, as we know. He has detailed guidelines for each position. If you don’t fall within the parameters, chances are he’ll take a pass. When it comes to cornerbacks, Kelly wants larger players with reach on the outside. That’s exactly what he got while in Philly, for better or worse.
Roseman was asked whether the new regime, and Jim Schwartz in particular, is more lenient when it comes to measurables — especially as it applies to the corner position and a player like Vernon Hargreaves.
“I think that [Schwartz] is more open to different body types. For him, the most important things are explosiveness, athletic ability, tight coverage, ball skills,” said Roseman. “But at the same time, it’s going to be important to every defensive coach to have guys who, if you can get guys that have height and length, that’s going to be a preference for every defensive coach that you talk to.”
It was also noted that the Eagles’ pre-draft visits (Roseman said they’ve conducted 29 of a possible 30 so far) have included several players with a blemish or two on their resumes. Will they be more forgiving when it comes to prospects with past transgressions?
“I think that we just have to do our due diligence on guys, because we sit around a lot and talk about all of us — and I’m sure this room has some stories about where they were at 18, 19, 20 and 21 [years old],” said Roseman. “And so, are they deal-breakers for us? Or are they young guys who made a mistake and deserve a second chance? Being able to spend more time with them in our own environment as well as going out and seeing them helps complete the picture.”
WHAT YOU MISSED
Josh details the Eagles’ signing of punter Ryan Quigley.
““From all the physical tools, both of them are extremely gifted…” Doug Pederson on Carson Wentz and Jared Goff.
Pederson and Roseman address Fletcher Cox‘s absence from voluntary minicamp.
“Kolby Listenbee wanted the $1 million prize.” The latest Draft Daily features the the speedy TCU receiver.
Josh’s thoughts on a Fletcher Cox trade and who is going to win the NFC East next year.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Bob Ford takes a look at the issue of Roseman’s accountability.
Roseman is the guy who has earned the right to have the last word this time, and it would be nice if everyone simply said so. That didn’t happen on Monday, when Roseman and Pederson soft-shoed around the pecking order of the organizational chart. Maybe that’s just the way of the NFL in order to give everyone some measure of deniability when the player you stood on the chair and lobbied for turns out to be Danny Watkins. Perhaps Roseman believes stepping out front would be at odds with the narrative of a kinder, gentler Howie Roseman who returns from his year in the wilderness as a swell coworker in the office.
Whatever the reason, for this fan base, after all it has endured, a little more honesty is probably warranted.
Zach Berman wonders whether a draft-day trade could still be in the cards for the Eagles.
The Eagles are spending the next week going through scenarios about what to do depending on what players fall or what teams are willing to move. Roseman said the Eagles are doing their “due diligence.” But one problem with moving up is they lack a second-round pick. That was surrendered last year in the trade to acquire Sam Bradford.
“I think having a second-round pick changes a lot of the options,” Roseman said. “Certainly, it changes the ammunition that you have if you were thinking about going up.”
Roseman called the second round a dead period that is “an ADD round for me” because he’s so compelled to try to trade into it and give up a future asset. When the Eagles stack their board, they know there are players between No. 8 and No. 77 that are not options in the third round. The lack of a second-rounder could have hurt them in discussions for the top pick.
A little football. The Eagles’ voluntary minicamp begins. We’ll talk to some players before today’s afternoon practice.