The two hot topics for Philadelphia Eagles fans during this locked-out offseason have been the inevitable Kevin Kolb trade and the need for another cornerback. They could ultimately end up being solved simultaneously in one fell swoop or be addressed separately.
Actually, there are several different ways things can play out regarding these two subjects and some are better than others. Let’s lay out some potential scenarios and see which ones you feel would bring the greatest value to the Eagles.
Scenario #1: Kevin Kolb is traded to Arizona for Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (DRC) and a third round draft pick. This is what I meant about addressing both subjects simultaneously. DRC is a good young cornerback, just turned 25 years old, and will be entering only his fourth season.
He’s made one pro bowl so far (2009) and in three years has accumulated 13 INTs, 61 passes defensed, and has scored four touchdowns (on INT returns). The guy is a playmaker and would be a great pairing with Asante Samuel. Plus we get a decent draft pick as well.
Scenario #2: Kevin Kolb is traded for a first round draft pick (doesn’t matter where) and the Eagles sign CB Nnamdi Asomugha. In this case we get a top draft pick and the top cornerback in free agency (and arguably the NFL). Certainly can’t argue the value in this scenario, the Eagles get the best of both worlds. However, there is some downside to this.
Asomugha will be 30 and cost mega-money. While this move would be of great benefit for the 2011 season what about after that? How many more years can Nnamdi play at this level before his skills diminish?
How will paying him huge money impact the Eagles’ ability to address the contracts of DeSean Jackson and Michael Vick? And that’s not to mention the following year when the Eagles need to think about paying LeSean McCoy and Jeremy Maclin.
Scenario #3: Kolb is traded for two second round draft picks and the Eagles sign a lesser talented but cheaper cornerback (as compared to Asomugha). The cost of two seconds for Kolb is a popular notion and some consider it more realistic value. While not as good as getting a first rounder, the upside is that it would benefit us in two drafts rather than just one.
As far as what other cornerbacks will be available will depend on under what circumstances free agency happens and whether or not they re-sign with their current team. But for right now the top possibilities in this order would be Johnathin Joseph (Bengals), Antonio Cromartie (Jets), Brent Grimes (Falcons), and Carlos Rogers (Redskins).
Scenario #4: Kolb is traded for rookie cornerback Patrick Peterson, straight up. I know, crazy right? But hear me out for a minute on this. If you recall, there was a report by Pro Football Weekly shortly after the draft that stated the Eagles and Cardinals had a deal in place for Kevin Kolb prior to the draft. There is always the possibility that turned into some kind of “handshake deal” where the Cardinals would select Peterson with the intention of trading him to the Eagles for Kolb.
The Cardinals, already with DRC, still selected Peterson over a top quarterback and several other top candidates who you can argue would have made more sense for them to take and would have filled more dire needs. Though it’s rare for a team to trade their #1 pick before he ever plays a single down, it’s not out of the realm of possibility. If I’m the Eagles, I’d even throw in a third rounder to close this deal.
Scenario #5: Kevin Kolb is NOT traded and we sign Asomugha or the next best cornerback. Is this really a good option? Though it’s not as interesting or exciting, keeping Kolb could prove to be the difference between winning it all in 2011 or not. If Michael Vick goes down for any length of time, or go down for the season, Kolb would give us the best chance of keeping this train rolling and that could be the best value of all!
Scenario #6: Kevin Kolb is traded but we do not sign a cornerback. This is a possibility because there have been no rumors whatsoever about the Eagles signing any cornerback. All of the speculation is by analysts and sports writers who view cornerback as a “need” for the Eagles. Andy Reid doesn’t always agree with everyone and could very well feel they’re “fine there” (as he likes to say).
Scenario #7: Kolb is not traded and the Eagles do not sign a cornerback. Yikes! This scenario stinks! But is it possible? It certainly is and here’s how: The lockout lasts until September.
In this case it wouldn’t make much sense to trade Kolb and makes much more sense to keep him. Then the Eagles don’t feel the dire need to pay Asomugha, other cornerbacks re-sign with their teams, and nobody is left available that would be worthwhile (or they simply don’t sign with the Eagles). It wouldn’t be the end of the world but all I can say for this scenario is…UGH!
There are several different ways you can mix and match the above possibilities or expand upon them, such as different draft pick compensation and exactly which cornerback to sign. But in general they comprise all the likely scenarios. There are two schools of thoughts you can apply here…which of these do you want to see happen and which one do you think actually will happen.
Personally, my gut feeling is that scenario #1 is what will actually happen. I think DRC will be an Eagle. If that happens, I think the Eagles would also get a draft pick in the deal. It could be as high as a third but no lower than a 5th.
What I would want to see happen is a tough choice between scenario number’s two and four. I would be extremely pleased in either case. I just hope scenario six doesn’t play out!
I’d like to know what Eagles Nation thinks. Tell me which scenario you’d like to see pan out and/or tell me which one you think actually will.