The Philadelphia Eagles triggered a minor tsunami that will wash over the NFL landscape when they traded quarterback Sam Bradford to the Minnesota Vikings Saturday morning.
The terms of the deal are quite stunning.
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) September 3, 2016
The Eagles now have a first-round pick next April after giving theirs up in the monumental trade to acquire the No. 2 overall pick this past year, which ultimately led to Carson Wentz.
That Eagles executive vice president Howie Roseman was able to acquire a first-round pick for Bradford is remarkable. Given his injury history, it’s hard to say he’s worth a first, let alone a first and a fourth. And depending on how Minnesota fares with Bradford, that fourth-round pick in 2018 could turn into a third or a second, per Albert Breer of The MMQB.
But Minnesota was desperate after losing Teddy Bridgewater for at least this season to a potentially life-threatening injury that has been described as horrifying.
The trade works for Minnesota, as Bridgewater and Bradford are essentially the same caliber, based on last year’s Pro Football Focus grades.
Sam Bradford actually graded slightly better than Teddy Bridgewater in PFF QB grades last year: 85.3 to 82.6 pic.twitter.com/QGchDG8pXz
— PFF (@PFF) September 3, 2016
Essentially, provided Bradford stays healthy, the Vikings are right back where they started with a competent quarterback.
But what does this mean for the Eagles?
Now, Carson Wentz will reportedly start the season as the starter.
— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) September 3, 2016
This means lots of bumps, bruises and mistakes for the Eagles offense this year.
Wentz showed some good and some bad during his only action this preseason. He finished with 89 yards on 12-of-24 passing with an interception. He missed guys badly, throwing behind and high at times, thanks to bad lower-body mechanics.
He’s raw. He’s never seen the game at this speed before and needs a lot of seasoning.
If Daniel does start games this year, Eagles fans shouldn’t get too excited.
He has been regarded as a quality backup for a few years but was absolutely putrid this preseason. Completing 61.7 percent of his passes (37-of-60), he averaged just 5.5 yards per attempt, threw one touchdown compared to two interceptions and was sacked five times.
Getting the start in Week 4 against the New York Jets, he was particularly inept, throwing both of his interceptions.
And really, it matters not which of the two will start. The Eagles just aren’t good enough everywhere else on offense to make up for a mediocre career backup or a raw rookie for whom mistakes will be commonplace.
Yes, the defense has the potential to be quite bullish, but we’re not looking at the second coming of the Legion of Boom here.
The Eagles are almost certainly going to lose a lot of games this year.
So the real question here is this: Did Roseman intentionally mail in the 2016 season?
Are the Eagles not-so-subtly ready to endure a losing campaign with the intention of developing their young talent for future success? It’s not a bad strategy. But it’s also not one that is usually employed in the NFL without being heavily criticized.
Are fans in Philadelphia going to be on board with the decision to trade away the only player on the roster who gives this team a remote chance for a postseason berth? Will they be patient enough to see the longer view and embrace Roseman’s vision?
We can’t wait to see what happens next.