By Kevin McGuire
The Philadelphia Eagles may be limping their way to the finish line of the 2016 season, but there is still plenty to talk about when it comes to the Birds. After all, this is Philadelphia—we can talk about the Eagles any day of the year. With things not going so well in the second half of the season, the caution signs are seemingly everywhere, but nobody should be hitting the panic button just yet.
Doug Pederson’s job security is not an issue
It’s highly unlikely the Eagles will cut ties with head coach Doug Pederson following one losing season in his coaching debut. In fact, it may be entirely out of the picture according to Howard Eskin. Eskin said on the WIP Morning Show this week there was “zero chance” the Eagles front office would pull the cord on Pederson after just one season, though he did say there are concerns about what is currently happening on the field under his leadership. That concern has been growing more and more among fans as play calling decisions and a lack of ability to adapt have been glaring issues with the rookie head coach.
Given the state of the roster and the need to improve multiple positions, it is fair to suggest Pederson is working with very little. We may not have a true idea of just how good (or bad) Pederson could be as a head coach until Howie Roseman and the front office make some moves to build a stronger roster to work with.
What to make about Carson Wentz
The Eagles made a late preseason move that thrust rookie quarterback Carson Wentz right into the starting role much sooner than initially planned when he was drafted by the franchise. At first, everything seemed to be OK with a 3-0 start to the season (which was chronicled by Freezing Cold Takes this week). Following a difficult loss on the road against the Cincinnati Bengals, analysis of Wentz’s throwing mechanics has become a bit of a hot-button issue.
As The Comeback asked, is it time to really be concerned about this? The short answer is no, it is not. The Eagles knew Wentz was going to need some grooming, as evidenced by the initial plan to keep him warming the bench and learning all season as an understudy behind Sam Bradford. But, the sudden departure of Bradford changed the plan and it was determined playing experience from the start would be the best way to go. So, Wentz’s rookie mistakes will serve as actual in-game learning opportunities. His throwing mechanics can be ironed out along the way and more in the offseason. It’s not time to panic, but if the same issues remain in 2017, then that will be a different story.
2017 NFL Draft pool will be deep at running back
Texas running back D’Onta Foreman declared for the NFL Draft last week, but the depth at running back in the upcoming NFL Draft class just got a little deeper. LSU running back Leonard Fournette and Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey (son of former Pro Bowl and Super Bowl-winning wide receiver Ed McCaffrey) have each declared for the NFL Draft a year early. Florida State’s Dalvin Cook and Georgia’s Nick Chubb are also on the board, and the possibility of Pitt running back James Conner throwing his name in the ring remains likely. By the time the Eagles get a chance to make their first draft pick next spring, there should be a healthy stable of running backs to choose from, if that’s the direction the team opts to go.