McMullen: Timing Isn’t Right for Foles Haul
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - It's Howie Roseman's job to get the most value in any trade situation so give the NFL's Executive of the Year plenty of credit for doing his job well.
The hype surrounding a potential deal for Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles has ludicrous demands being treated without skepticism by some in the national media.
For example look at this take from ESPN's Chris Mortensen in the wake of Geoff Mosher's report that the Birds have already been offered a second-round pick by an unnamed AFC team for Foles:
Now let's take the emotion out of this and think about the situation logically for a moment.
Bradford was traded eight days before the 2016 season to Minnesota after Teddy Bridgewater went down with a catastrophic leg injury which still threatens to derail his career to this day 17 months later.
The Vikings, meanwhile, believed that had a Super Bowl-level roster at the time but all they had at backup QB was journeyman veteran Shaun Hill. Furthermore, Bradford himself has always been considered a bit of a white whale by many talent evaluators in this league, a former No. 1 overall pick with superlative arm talent undermined by consecutive ACL tears.
But, the biggest reason Roseman was able to fleece Rick Spielman was simple supply and demand. The timing of Bridgewater's injury meant the Vikings went to a store with no competition so Roseman was able to set his price, comfortable in the knowledge Walmart wasn't down the road ready to undercut him.
In fact, earlier that offseason when there were other avenues still available Denver's John Elway wanted Bradford and his offer was two second-round picks, a better indication of the signal caller's true value and one Roseman dismissed because he was comfortable letting Carson Wentz sit under the learning tree for his rookie season.
The same scenario is unfolding again but Foles isn't as well-regarded around the league as Bradford, at least the Bradford of 2016 before his degenerative knee issues wiped out his 2017 campaign.
The latter and more important part is the market, however. Forget Walmart, you now have Amazon and eBay to deal with as well.
The 2018 offseason is the rare one where there are a host of at least competent QB options available. in free agency you have Case Keenum, A.J. McCarron, the crown jewel Kirk Cousins and even Bradford and Bridgewater while the draft is loaded with four definitive first-rounders -- Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen, Josh Allen and Baker Mayfield -- as well as two more that could be late-first or early second-rounders in Lamar Jackson and Baker Mayfield.
So ask yourself as a team negotiating with Roseman why you would want to give up a Bradford-level ransom to acquire a player who will require a new deal in the range of $15 million-plus a year or more when you have all those other avenues available?
It always only takes one to fall in love with what Foles did against Minnesota and New England while leading the Eagles to the Super Bowl LII but it's far more likely that Roseman is whistling in the wind, at least until August when everything has already shaken out on the personnel front and perhaps another injury creates another air of desperation.
Lightning rarely strikes twice but if Roseman really wants a Bradford-like return for Foles he's going to have to wait.
The positive part of that strategy is that the Eagles could keep the best QB room in football for one more season.
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen