Eagles Wake-Up Call: Behind Bradford’s Demand
Sam Bradford may have skipped some voluntary workouts while going a week without returning texts or phone calls from the Eagles, but his relationship with the team is “fine,” according to Tom Condon.
Bradford’s agent appeared on The Rich Eisen Show yesterday, mentioning that he called Howie Roseman before the quarterback returned this week and was told the Eagles are happy to have Bradford back and would “welcome him with open arms.” Condon also indicated he isn’t worried how the quarterback will be received in Philadelphia as it’ll come down to his performance on the field.
He explained that Bradford didn’t know the Eagles would draft a quarterback when he re-signed, and that the quarterback was unhappy because “it’s not really a competition” as it’s “just a matter of time” before the Eagles move on from him. He then noted why the trade request was made.
“We thought we had a chance to go to a really good football team and be there for a long time,” Condon said. “That opportunity was there, and the attempt was made. It was just that when the Broncos contacted the Eagles and talked about the trade, they couldn’t agree on the price, and so they drafted somebody in the first round. At that point, our options are pretty limited, so our next best option is to go back and prepare for the season.”
Sal Paolantonio later appeared on 97.5’s Ron Jaworski Show yesterday, breaking down how, exactly, Bradford reacted when he met with Jeffrey Lurie, Howie Roseman and Doug Pederson after the deal for the second pick was made.
“He did not like the idea that the Eagles had traded up to No. 2, and expressed his displeasure rather emphatically,” Paolantonio said. “[He] walked out of the meeting and told him that he was leaving and he wanted to be traded and he was going back to Oklahoma.
“He left NovaCare rather abruptly, went back to Oklahoma and then on the way to Oklahoma … he called Tom Condon and told him what he was going to do, and then Condon was stuck trying to figure out what to do with Sam Bradford.”
Paolantonio added how Bradford wanted to “force his way out” while John Elway called Roseman “at the insistence of Tom Condon.” However, Elway told Roseman he was moving on when Roseman mentioned the cost for Bradford was at least two second-round picks. After Denver bowed out, it didn’t take long for Condon to run out of suitors for Bradford.
According to Paolantonio, Jets head coach Todd Bowles “wants no part” of Bradford, while the “Bills [are] going a completely different route.” After Bradford “went dark” for a week and didn’t return communication from the organization, they made another round of calls but didn’t find any takers, so they “waived the white flag.”
“Bradford was driving this decision,” Paolantonio said, “not his agent.”
WHAT YOU MISSED
The Eagles hired Joe Douglas and Andy Weidl — and announced other moves — in the front office.
Mailbag: Could the Eagles bring in the talented, but troubled, Josh Gordon?
Tim took a look at Douglas, Weidl and the Joe Flacco connection.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
The Eagles have embraced the marketing of Carson Wentz, says the Inquirer’s Mike Sielski.
Lurie was unavailable Wednesday for a comment, but his glee over Wentz’s arrival has shone through in team-issued photos and videos that feature the two of them, and one needs only to understand the NFL’s marketing history to recognize that Lurie’s coveting a franchise quarterback might be about more than a shot at a Super Bowl.
“Everyone knows what the social role of sports is today,” author Louis Menand wrote in the May 16 issue of the New Yorker. “It is, via commercials and endorsements, to sell stuff.”
In reviewing the new book Players: The Story of Sports and Money and the Visionaries Who Fought to Create a Revolution by Matthew Futterman, Menand pointed out that legendary Hollywood agent and movie mogul Lew Wasserman had provided “the model for contemporary sports marketing. . . . What Wasserman and the studios figured out was that stars sell a picture. If you promote the actors, rather than the story, you will sell more tickets.” The NFL began following that model in the late 1970s, when scoring and ticket sales were lagging, to transform itself, changing its rules to make passing a bigger part of the sport, elevating quarterbacks into its primary celebrities.
Sam Donnellon of the Daily News, from the perspective of Chase Daniel, writes about the situation the backup quarterback is in.
Doug’s my old position coach from Kansas City. He really gets me, I think, or at least I thought he did. He was me once, a career backup behind some great arms, and I figured if I came here, I’d at least get a chance to compete for the job and make that mid-career jump from backup to starter like some other quarterbacks, a few who became famous, have.
He even said it himself after I signed here. “His confidence level is extremely high. It’s hard to explain unless you’ve been around someone for three years like I have. You have that trust and confidence in that individual. That’s the level of trust that I have in Chase Daniel and the confidence that I have in him. If for whatever reason he has an opportunity to go in a football game, then we know that he can act and play just like a starter.’’
This is what I said that day: “You’d be crazy to think that I’m not a super fiery competitor that wants to win the starting job. That should be the mindset of anyone on this team… I mean, I think the good Lord has a plan for me to follow. And this is part of his plan. I’m taking every step necessary to lead myself in that direction to become a starter in this league. Because there’s no doubt at all that given the opportunity I can play and play at a high level.’’
So how do you think I feel now? Everyone’s talking about Sam’s hurt feelings, Sam’s compete level, whether Howie Roseman and Pederson pulled the wool over his eyes when they gave him all that money and then traded up to draft Carson Wentz, whether old Sam should have tried to force a trade.
We have a feature coming we think you’ll like.