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Thursday, March 06, 2008

Eagles Offseagle Neagle at Wide Receagle    

Just read this post. The article's main arguments appear to be (1) the Eagles need a WR, (2) in that category, their need is for a big red zone receiver, (3) building through the draft is a great option, and (4) Larry Fitzgerald is the best overall option.

First, the premise is interesting, if not entirely new (how many years have the Eagles been looking for a WR?).

Second, my uninformed opinion they're overstating the effectiveness of Curtis as a deep threat (and therefore underestimating the need for one), which is a great example of why I wish they had KC Joyner's Hollinger-like stats available on ESPN.com. Also, Jabbar Gaffney is a red zone receiver -- I think it's fair to say the Eagles need something more than that.

Third, I'm also not nearly as excited about the WRs in the draft because (a) admittedly, I don't know anything about them, (b) it appears particularly difficult for teams to predict what college WRs will give them, and (c) Andy Reid's offense seems especially difficult for rookies to pick up.

Fourth, I think they overestimate Fitzgerald's availability. Are the Cardinals really going to accept Sheppard (who is very good, but overrated; plays a position that is generally less valued; is 2 years older; had a sub-par season last year; and will probably be cut if he isn't traded, due to financial considerations), an underachieving OT, and a first-round pick (likely to be low with Fitzgerald on board) for their best player (a former first rounder himself)? If anything, I think Boldin is the guy on the Cardinals you go after. He's not as big, has injury issues and is a little older, but that's exactly why he'd be available and he'd still present a major change for their offense.

As for thoughts on other options: Evans would be a great fit, and considering their financial situation, Buffalo might be happier trading him than paying him. Roy Williams could probably be had; a year-in-the-league Calvin Johnson to replace him, plus parts to improve the secondary (Sheppard) and O and/or D lines (where the Eagles almost always have a surplus) would make sense. It might be worth taking a look at one of the underachieving Falcons receivers (Jenkins or White) to see if they're busts, or if they were just on a busted team (White especially had some nice games last year). I'd be happy with a trade for Ronald Curry; he's not a big name and hasn't stayed healthy, but he's been very good on a bad team when he's played. As for why the Raiders would trade him, they need pieces on lines (especially on offense) and someone to play opposite Asomugha, the Javon Walker signing makes him expendable (at least in the Raiders' eyes) and the Raiders aren't going anywhere anyway (so why not load up on picks?). Other than that, it doesn't look like there's much out there (unless you want to roll the dice on whichever Jaguars WR gets cut. Show me Troy Williamson!).

2 Comments:

  • I should also say that, with WESTBROOK, LJ Smith (who will learn how to catch someday), and to a lesser extent Brown and Curtis, the Eagles have decent red zone threats if they're throwing underneath (McNabb's scrambling would be a huge weapon there if he started doing that again, which seemed like the case by the end of last season).

    So what 700 club is really talking about is a Burress-type guy you can run fade routes to, or throw high, only-a-tall-receiver-can-catch-them lasers at the back of the endzone. I was expecting that this would not be a major problem for Philly, but it turns out they were about 6th in the league in total offense, but only 24th in the league in red zone success rate. That suggests that a big guy like Ernest Wilford (who could get cut by Jacksonville or be made available this offseason via trade) could be a nice, cheap option.

    On the other hand, I still think they'd be better off getting a money receiver, and there's practically a city-wide psychological need for one: the Wilford move (not to mention some of the other moves I suggested in the post) wouldn't fill that need. But that might be a nice place to start.

    By Blogger chas, at 6:27 PM  

  • Most parenthetical blog post (and followup comment)... evar?

    By Blogger rusch, at 1:42 AM  

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