Friday, March 12, 2010

Hank Signs + Some Ray Edwards Talk

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Hank Baskett signed a 1-year deal to return to Philly.  Good news for everyone involved.  Hank is perfect for what we need.  He gives us a good #4 WR.  Hank can play, even start if needed.  He also will block and play Special Teams if that is what we need.  High character, low maintenance.  We will have a spot open to add a 5th WR.  That will likely be filled through the draft.  Hank is just a good insurance policy.  I'm glad he's back.  We can now look for WRs at our discretion.  There isn't a need to get someone that is polished or able to contribute right off the bat. 

No official word on Justin Fargas.  That leads me to believe he may have some injury concerns.  Justin has talked to a couple of teams.  He visited KC and here.  You know money isn't the issue.  If he's not signing there may be some problem with how he checks out on the team physicals.  That is the reason Oakland reportedly cut him. 


RFA HUNTING?

Ray Edwards has been getting quite a lot of pub recently.  Some Minny writer speculated that the Eagles could make a run at him.  Now Bob Grotz is saying that we could go after him.  I have mentioned Ray a few times as a potential. RFA target. 

Here's the case for Ray.  He is 25 years old.  He plays LDE and has an ideal build at 6'5, 270.  That gives him the frame and bulk to be able to hold the POA.  He's also athletic enough to be an effective pass rusher.  Ray isn't an explosive up the field guy.  He's a complete LDE, something we hoped Victor Abiamiri would develop into. 

Ray is an ascending player.  He gets a little better each season.  People think he just had the good game vs Dallas in the playoffs.  Not so.  He emerged this year to being a real quality starter. Check out his numbers: 

Year 1 - 15 Gms - 10 Sts - 3 sacks - 10 Tkls
Year 2 - 12 Gms - 11 Sts - 5 sacks - 30 Tkls
Year 3 - 15 Gms - 15 Sts - 5 sacks - 54 Tkls
Year 4 - 16 Gms - 16 Sts - 8.5 sacks - 51 Tkls

He is just hitting his prime and has 4 or 5 really good years left.  He also doesn't benefit from playing in a blitzing defense.  MIN likes to use their DL to get most pressure.

For comparion's sake, check out Aaron Kampman's numbers in his first 4 seasons:

Year 1 - 12 Gms - 6 Sts - 0.5 sacks - 24 Tkls
Year 2 - 12 Gms - 10 Sts - 2 sacks - 29 Tkls
Year 3 - 16 Gms - 16 Sts - 4.5 sacks - 67 Tkls
Year 4 - 16 Gms - 16 Sts - 6.5 sacks - 81 Tkls

Aaron followed this start with 37 sacks in the next 3 years.  That was the prime of his career.  I don't know that Ray will end up being as good as Kampman, but he's definitely headed in the right direction.  

The case against Ray is that he plays on a great DL and that skews his production.  He rarely has to deal with double teams.  He can count on pressure from RDE and up the middle.  There are also questions about whether he will pay the price to become a Pro Bowl type of DE.  

We'd have to give up pick #24 to get him.  I know some people think you could negotiate with the Vikings, but they're not letting him go for less than a 1.  The only reason they would let him walk is that they have so many other high-priced players.  AP and Sidney Rice will want mega-deals soon.  Same for Chad Greenway.  Percy Harvin will be in that category in 2 years.  They already have 3 high-priced DL.

Do you give up #24 and a big deal to sign Ray?  Maybe.  The DE class has lots of potential, but each guy also has issues.  Jason Pierre-Paul is raw.  Derrick Morgan isn't an explosive athlete.  Jerry Hughes is a bit undersized.  Sergio Kindle is more of a 3-4 LB.  Brandon Graham is short and doesn't have long arms.  Corey Wootton is still dealing with the after effects of an ACL injury from December 2008.

I haven't had a chance to watch a ton of tape on Ray.  I know he's a good player, but I'm not exactly sure how good.  I'll trust the Eagles on this. 

I wouldn't get too worked up one way or the other.  This reeks of a situation where writers are starting to write about other writers' speculation.  Somehow this morphs from random idea to rumor with legs. 


HALL REPORTING FOR DUTY

The Eagles signed former Air Force star Chad Hall.  He was a WR/RS and extremely productive for them.  He's spent the last 2 years doing his duty, but is now hoping to get a chance to play football.  He's only 5'8, 180, but Chad has excellent quickness, good hands, and is just a natural football player.  Think of him as a Danny Amendola type.  Chad realistically projects to the Practice Squad, if things work out for him. He's been out of the game for a couple of years. It can take time to shake that rust off. You'd hope for him to really make a run at the roster in 2011.

Now, it is possible he'll get here and won't be able to overcome the size/speed issues. If so, you cut him and say "Off you go". It is also possible that Chad will exceed expectations and grab one of the final roster spots. You don't know what to expect with a guy like him. No matter what, it is highly unlikely he'll offer any impact in 2010 outside of being good in practice.

Dave wrote a great story about how he got signed.  Must-read material.

http://www.philadelphiaeagles.com/news/Story.asp?story_id=20470&spadaro=1
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23 comments:

Tommy Lawlor said...

From yesterday. Someone asked about drafting a LB early.
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Yes, that is a possibility. Right now WLB is a hole. The Eagles may project Jordan as the starter, but I don't get the feeling that's the player they want to be the starter in September. Expect them to bring in serious competition, in the form of an early pick or UFA.

I love Sean Lee and Navorro Bowman as WLBs for us. Darryl Washington isn't worth 24 to us and won't last to our 2nd. Plus, he's just not an ideal fit.

Tommy Lawlor said...

RE: overvaluing picks

We all do. Draft picks are like lottery tickets. Sometimes they turn into DeSean Jackson. Other times they are Jerome McDougle.

I do think keeping picks is the smart way to go most of the time, but there is nothing wrong with using them for trades every few years.

Tommy Lawlor said...

RE: DeSean's twitter account

Makes perfect sense to me when I use my Secret Decoder Ring provided by Ovaltine.

Tommy Lawlor said...

RE: Jevan Snead

I'm not sure why Spads mentioned him. Very odd for him to go to that name. I doubt Jevan is high on our list, but that is a complete guess.

izzylangfan said...

I can see the Eagles parting with the 24th pick for Ray Edwards in the sense that he is a guy who is polished but still has a lot of upside potential. Good DE's are often late developers like Hugh Douglas and why use a number one pick for a guy who might not be ready for a year or two or might turn out to be like Jerome McDougal or Victor Albiamiri (yes I know he was a #two).

None the less, I think that the Eagles might not be in such a hurry to give up their number one pick unless they thought they were going to get another one someplace. So I'll bet that if the Eagles go after Ray Edwards than D'Mac for a number one is next.

Mike said...

Landing a solid DE is a must, and I think it is worth a 1st round pick.

Just think about the guys drafted recently: Ambiarai and Smith...a 2nd and a 3rd rounder...we have already unsuccessfully spent a lot of resources on finding a LDE.

If the Eagles thing Ray Edwards is worth it, I have no problem giving up our first, even in a deep draft.

Agree that in the ideal world, we would get a 1st back for McNabb.

Cliff said...

Minny fans seem to think Edwards will get compacent after getting his big contract. Are there any past personality issues to support this opinion?

Pitmanite said...

I agree 100% about keeping draft picks being the way to go. I was just pointing out that perception is not always reality, and sometimes people seem to ignore common sense just because they come to the table with preconceived notions.

In this case, the seahawks could have the best of both worlds, in still being able to take a potential stud at #6 (i.e. a cornerstone LT), and get a top player at the premium position for their #14 pick. It's almost ingrained in us, if we hear someone say the seahawks are considering giving up their 1st rd pick, to say, "whoa no way they do that #14 is too valuable." Yet, if you pay attn history tells you that you're more likely to get a good, but not great player at pick #14. I pray that the seahawks wake up and make this trade.

That's be great if we could trade Donnie for the #14, take a player we like and deal our own #1 for a guy like Ray Edwards.

Cliff said...

The best thing we have going for us, I think, is that Pete Carrol will want to make a splash in his 1st year as HC.

If Seattle is anything like Philly (can't believe I actually typed that), the fans and media have probably been reminding Carrol about how lousy a NFL coach he is since he was hired. How long does it take for the Nega-attleians to start questioning the Carrol hire if he goes 3-13?

Cliff said...

Hey, it turns out we might not have to look far for a new DE: http://1067thefandc.radio.com/2010/03/12/another-unhappy-skin/

The Skins' Andre Carter isn't adjusting to the new 3-4 defense and he's not happy about it. Of course, the man hasn't even made it to a mini-camp and he's already bitching about the defensive change so I'm not sure I'd want a player like that anyway. Plus, it's doubtful he gets outright cut and the Skins probably won't be too keen on trading a proven vet to us.

frankfurtler said...

@Cliff
I had the same notion about Kampmann last offseason, he was none too keen on converting to the OLB technique in the 3-4, and I wished the Eagles could get him then.

I think it will be interesting to see how teams work through this offseason considering the value of rookie vs. the value of a RFA veteran at a given position in the draft and the roster.

Cliff said...

Looks like Vick is saying the right things: http://m.philly.com/phillycom/db_41061/contentdetail.htm?contentguid=KB6lhG6P

Side note: Vick I'd holding his football camp in our hometown this August and it is LOADED with pro's. Adrian Peterson and McNabb were the latest to be added. Just goes to show that the players are really behind Mike. And I wish I was in high school again so I could go.

Cliff said...

Should say "Vick is holding..."

Damn auto-correct.

Myron said...

1.) I wish Vick would just sign with another team already. I'm so sick of this guy already. If he's on the roster in 2010 and we still have to listen to interviews on ESPN about his "frustration" in his situation in the Eagles or how he's a "reformed" man and giving speeches in schools, I'm going to puke. Seriously. He's a formerly overrated quarterback with more media attention than skills, and now he's 30 years old and he's still getting more attention than he deserves, and probably has even less skills. The Eagles just need to cut their losses and let him go.

2.) IF the Eagles think that Ray Edwards truly does have the kind of potential that Tommy outlines in his post, I'm going to trust that they are doing the right thing by trading away the #24 pick for him. However, I am really high on two guys in the draft this year: Brandon Graham and Jerry Hughes, and I would love to see the Eagles take a chance on one of these guys in the first round. Obviously, they could struggle in the NFL and Edwards could legitimately turn out to be a beast as Tommy predicted, BUT I see some Dwight Freeney in Brandon Graham, and some Lamarr Woodley in Jerry Hughes. I guess I'll have to trust the Eagles decision-makers on this one and hope that they make the right move.

3.) Something interesting for McNabb fans out there: Check out Mel Kiper in the latest "First Draft" podcast - http://sports.espn.go.com/espnradio/podcast/archive?id=3881101

In the 3/12 podcast, they discuss possibilities of McNabb being traded somewhere, he denounces McNabb as "overrated".

He knows it, we know it, but I don't think Andy believes it.

Also, this shows that McNabb will probably be lucky to fetch a 2nd rounder in this league... the insiders like Kiper probably all agree that McNabb is an overrated aging QB.

Myron said...

@ 10:35: "I've talked to some people in the league who study quarterbacks, that think he's the most overrated quarterback in the National [Football League] and has been over the years."

@ 11:46: "There are some detractors out there with McNabb. I've talked to some people in the league and they've said, overrated tag... for all the hype and all the talk about McNabb and all the defense that McNabb's had over his career, because he's had alot of people attacking him, alot of defense attorneys coming to him... people in the league I've talked to, and I respect a couple of these guys very much for their ability to evaluate quarterbacks, state that, and have told me - Donovan McNabb, when you look at and study him - very overrated for the type of publicity he gets."

Hmmmmmmmmm.

Kevin said...

Kiper is a draft expert, and a subpar one. He isn't an NFL insider or reporter. I don't listen to anything that comes from his mouth. Not saying that people he's talked to havent said that but Kiper is a blowhard

Cliff said...

Kiper is way off. Look at McNabb's numbers. He might be overrated at this point in his career but he' hasn't been overrated "over his career." That's simply ridiculous.

The term "overrated" is so ambiguous anyway. What does it mean? I think Kiper is overrated, along with the rest of ESPN. They're obviously overrating his content when they put it behind a pay wall because they think people will pay to be an Insider and view it. Ha!

Stephen said...

Mcnabb hit his peak in '04/'05/'06. It's been all downhill since then. I kept waiting for the savvy veteran thing to show up but instead I still see wormburners and lack of field vision.

He really needs to overcome his petulance about the philly media and all that. I get it, Philly is a tough town to QB in and the fans are brutal, but at some point you need to block that out and stop worrying about what people will say if you can't get it done.

I've seen Donovan make absolutely perfect, gorgeous throws, I've seen him make incredible plays, so I know he's capable, he just plays like crap sometimes and that lack of consistency really kills him.

Cliff said...

Tommy, you might already be aware, but I just found out David Simon has a new HBO series starting April 11 - Treme, about post-Katrina New Orleans. I know you were a big fan of The Wire. From the preview I saw, a lot of the same actors are in it.

I'm freaking excited.

Edward said...

"It wouldn't surprise me that once I finish writing this the Eagles will make some blockbuster move. Such is the unpredictable nature of the off-season."

How genuine do you think that comment by Spuds is Tommy? I'm hoping he knows something!

Cliff said...

Ok Andy, Quinn's been traded. Now's the time to call Tom.

Crash said...

Tom is due to make a his first Eagles trade. You would think that he would want to bring some of his "guys" to Cleveland.

Cliff said...

That might be true, but Donovan was never a Tom-guy. He wasn't not a Tom-guy, but Donovan will always belong to Andy.