The Eagles may be in for one bad season and no one can be blamed but the front office. I have never been an Andy Reid hater and I never plan to be. I also have never really criticized the front office except when they decided to sign Michael Vick only because they wanted the headlines on them instead of the Phillies. But the fact is that the Eagles have set themselves up for failure in a big way this season.
It all started when they let Brian Dawkins go and acted as if it were no big deal. I will never forget that night or the day that followed because the next day we were greeted to the awesome free agent signing of Stacey Andrews. At the press conference to announce the signing they refused to answer any questions regarding Dawkins and seemed turned off by the fact that reporters would have the audacity to want to get answers to questions regarding the departure of a fan favorite, and the defensive leader. It continued this season when they traded Sheldon Brown and Chris Gocong for a draft pick and a guy who was already released. Said player was also talked up as a guy who would be a great special team’s player. I guess he was so special that he will have to show his talents to another team.
The biggest problem with these two examples I have given, and it’s one that the team still has, is that they had/have no one to replace these players. The Eagles front office has always been one to get insulted when players want to get paid more. Unlike the other teams in the league they haven’t yet seemed to understand that when players do well, no matter how much they are paid, they always want more. Because of that if a player voices that they want a new deal they usually don’t make it past the next season before they are shipped out. While usually they have made good decisions on letting veteran players go (Shawn Barber, Hugh Douglas, Lito Sheppard) this has gotten to the point where you wonder if the Eagles brass ego is so large they actually believe this secondary can be good.
The Eagles are now depending on a rookie safety in Nate Allen to take over a safety position that fans knew needed to be filled for a few years now. Even though the Eagles were staring at Earl Thomas who played a lot like Dawkins at Texas, and played both safety and cornerback, they instead took pass rushing defensive end Brandon Graham. Graham could be great and many project him to be but in a defensive that subs out DE like strip clubs change dancers was it the best move for a team that desperately needs secondary help?
The most annoying thing regarding the Eagles has to be their annual “State of the Eagles” address that the media makes out to be a big deal. Let me ask you does Joe Banner say anything that surprises anyone? More importantly does he really think he is that important that he can, with a straight face, that his annual speech is the NFL equivalent to the presidents “State of the Union” address? The only thing that comes of these annual speeches are headaches because Banner just treats fans like morons who don’t know that their teams defense is no longer the feared team in the NFC.
Finally what were they thinking trading McNabb to the Redskins? It’s not even so much that you traded the franchises best QB to a division team but more importantly you gave the Redskins a good QB to rip apart your awful secondary. This is an Eagles defense that will have to face Donovan McNabb, Eli Manning, and Tony Homo six times total this season. I am dreading seeing Romo and his new weapon Dez Bryant shed Asante Samuels awful attempt at a tackle. Yes their defensive line should be strong but they are then relying on a linebacker core whose best player is coming off major knee surgery.
Many are saying that the Eagles will be lucky to go 8-8 with others saying they will surprise people and go 10-6. Those who have 10-6 dreams will come back to reality when week one rolls around and Aaron Rodgers proves why the Packers let Brett Favre go. This Eagles front office is in for a rude awaking and that is that the defense, for the first time in a long time, is going to be the weakest part of their team.