Reporting Michael Barkann & Ike Reese
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By Spike Eskin
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – After a disappointing 8-8 season in 2011, the Eagles have done a lot of things right before the 2012 campaign. Most notably, they traded for the linebacker they so desperately needed in DeMeco Ryans. Eagles GM Howie Roseman joined 94WIP’s Reuben Frank and Rob Ellis on Thursday to talk about Ryans, and other moves they may make before the 2012 season begins.
On the 2011 season:
We didn’t have the year we wanted to have last year. So when you have a year like that you go back and look at some of the things you did, or you didn’t do, and you try to evaluate it and you try to get better from it. We have an obligation to the fans and Philadelphia to put a championship caliber team on the field, that first starts with us evaluating what we did.
We had a short off-season, it was a new scheme, new players, and then a shortened off-season, and so we felt because of the off-season we had in place, our defensive line and our secondary, maybe it would be a smoother transition than it was.
On whether they will take another linebacker or a quarterback in the NFL Draft:
I don’t think you can go into the draft saying that we’re not going to take a particular position, and we go back and look at some of the things we’ve done, that we’re trying to do a better job in. And I think one of the things we’ve looked at is if we go into the draft, and say we’ve gotta get this, or we’re not going to take that, and so if there’s a player on the board that we think is by far the best player, it won’t matter the position, we’ll take that player.
On the report that there was a power struggle in the Eagles front office:
I feel very fortunate to have the relationship I do with coach, this goes back even before I was the GM, and the time he spent with me looking at building a football team. He had a great opportunity to learn from Ron Wolf, so he tries to take that and impart some of the things he learned and put it on me and our staff here. And then, we have a really good relationship so we spend a lot of time together both in and outside the office. We talk about a lot of things both on our football team, and outside our football team, and I think that we’re able to bounce things off each other. And at the end of the day, he’s got final say, and he’s going to make the decision, but he’s going to take all the information and he knows that I’m spending all my time, between, during the season looking at these things, and then I narrow it down for him. He doesn’t have to watch 400 guys like we watch in the Fall. Then we go from there.
On whether they’re comfortable with their backup quarterback situation:
You’re talking about a priority position going forward. That’s always a spot that we look at. You’re talking about a guy in Andy who came from a Green Bay system that drafted a quarterback every year. But that being said, we’ve got a lot of confidence in the guys we have on the roster. We drafted Mike Kafka in the fourth round because we liked him, not because we felt like we needed a quarterback. He hasn’t had an off-season in Philadelphia. We know he’s working out, he’s working hard, and he’ll come back here ready to go.
On whether Michael Vick can avoid injury in 2012:
You’ve seen him do it here. You’ve seen it do him here as a Philadelphia Eagle starting quarterback. And now he’s got a whole off-season. His first off-season as a starting quarterback in Philadelphia to work on some of those things. He’s aware of it, that’s the first part of it. And then, when you look at some of the games that he played really well from the pocket, you show that to him, and he’ll be ready to go.
On the cornerback situation and whether they will trade Asante Samuel:
We feel very fortunate to be strong at that position. Not only with the guys you mentioned but with some young guys and Joselio Hanson as our nickel. Guys that have played or have developmental upside, so you get some phone calls here in the off-season, teams that look at maybe your positions of strength and trying to match up with their weaknesses and vice versa. Those calls are constantly ongoing and we’ll see what develops.
On their relationship with Drew Rosenhaus and the prospect of signing LeSean McCoy to an extension:
Our relationship with Drew is good. It’s developing into a really strong relationship. In fact, we saw him when we were in Florida, and by the pool, I let him watch my kids for a couple of minutes so I could get a cocktail. We’re encouraged by everything that’s gone on, there’s no problem there. THere’s no problem dealing with Drew, he’s a deal maker. He wants to get solid deals for his players. He wants to keep them in the same place that they’re in, so that’s not a concern at all. In terms of LeSean McCoy, you’re talking about an important player for the Philadelphia Eagles. A player that we’ve made no secret that we want to keep here, that we enjoy being part of this team, being part of this city. We drafted him, we want to keep our drafted players, and we’ll work toward that.
On whether he feels like as constructed right now, the Eagles are a Super Bowl contender:
The most important thing, is that we have an obligation and a commitment to our fans to make sure that we put the best possible team on the field. To proclude that we won’t do anything else here, I wouldn’t do that, because you never know the opportunities that are going to come up. It’s March 29th, we’ve got a long we to go before we get on the field for training camp. That being said, we’re excited about the possibilities for our team. We want to get the taste out of our mouth from last season and put forward a heck of a team and a heck of an effort in 2012. We’re excited about the draft, and we’re continuing to evaluate players that are in the free agent market. And maybe be available via trade, and in the draft.