Friday, July 15, 2011

The Eagles Should Keep Kevin Kolb

With the NFL lockout on it’s way to finally coming to an end it’s time to start contemplating the Eagles possible moves.  The Eagles are a vault and any rumor that has been leaked on the internet or written about in the newspapers is probably the farthest thing from the front office’s thought process.  That being known and said it’s still inevitable that the Eagles will be active once the lockout is lifted and with the late start veteran guys are the likely targets.  Like everything in football, the good and the bad all start with the quarterback position, so that’s where we will begin. 

The Eagles are in a situation that most teams in the NFL would covet.  They have an athlete unlike any other in the league in Michael Vick.  Vick proved last season that with some great coaching he can become a quarterback not just a runner.  Kevin Kolb was anointed the team starter after McNabb was traded to Washington and has never played bad enough to lead anyone to believe that he can’t start in this league.  The Eagles have two starters, one of which we know that are going to keep, the other has been the number one topic of trade rumors throughout the NFL off season.

Kevin Kolb was the guy that the Eagles were going to trade for a top ten pick in April, then reality kicked in and the lockout diminished any ability the Eagles had to move him.  That same lockout has now lasted halfway through July and the Eagles thought process on moving Kolb has had to change. 

In a normal off season Kolb would have been gone a long time ago, but this off season has been anything but normal.  Mini camps and voluntary workouts can bring in rookies and new players and get them up to speed and ready to play before training camps even begin.  With none of those occurring as this year it just makes sense for the Eagles to keep Kevin Kolb rather then trade him at this point.  I know people will cry, why keep him if you can get a first round pick for him?  Why keep him if the Eagles will lose him to free agency next season and get nothing in return?  Why keep him when they could possibly trade him for a starting corner? 

The Eagles will keep Kolb because it just makes sense.  The rumors of him being traded to Arizona for Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie are just that, rumors.  Arizona desperately needs a QB, but that won’t trade another player for one.  The Eagles will fill the void of a starting corner opposite Asante Samuel in free agency so there is no need to trade Kolb for that position. 

Yes they could get a first round pick in return for Kolb, but if Arizona gets a starting caliber quarterback in a very week division (Last years winner , Seattle, was 8-8) they easily could win the division and make the playoffs.  That devalues the first round pick the Eagles would get in return from top ten to around twenty five or later.  Not worth the trade in my eyes.

The Eagles could lose Kolb and get nothing in return next season or this could happen: Michael Vick has only started 81.3% of his games since becoming a starting NFL quarterback.  Vick has only started all sixteen games in a season once.  He missed three games due to injury last season and Kolb stepped in and went 2-1 as a starter.  Ask yourself, if the Eagles started an unknown Mike Kafka in those three games and went 1-2 or 0-3 are the Eagles in the playoffs?  That could be the scenario this season.  There is a very good chance that Michael Vick will miss a few games, a revamped but questionable offensive line, his style of play and history all dictate that he will.  Are the Eagles really comfortable with Mike Kafka starting those games or a 41 year old Jeff Garcia?  I don’t think so.  Worse case scenario Kolb plays his way back into a starting role and the Eagles franchise him or resign him at the end of the season. 

The quarterback position is the most difficult to fill in the NFL.  A great one can change a franchises history for a decade or more (please see the Colts & Patriots).  A bad one can do the same (please see the Bills & Lions).  The Eagles have two starters in their stable and there is no reason to change that.  A Kolb trade and a catastrophic Vick injury could set a team with super bowl aspirations back ten years.  I don’t know about you but I don’t miss the Bobby Hoying, Rodney Pete etc…era. 

The Eagles see a team that is ready to make a run at the super bowl (again) and by trading Kevin Kolb they would be trading away an pretty good insurance policy if and when Michael Vick is unable to go.  If it were any other off season it would have made sense to move him, but this is the 2011 off season and the lockout has caused a different set of issues to deal with.  The Eagles should and will keep Kevin Kolb; it just makes sense at this point. 

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