|Now that the Eagles nightmare is over, it is time
for the organization to decide who they will go after in the free agency market and the
NFL draft. The most intriguing part is the draft. While the Eagles had the
worst record in the league this season, they will not get the top pick. That belongs
to the Cleveland Browns, who are re-entering the league.
Carmen Policy of the Browns organization has stated an interest in drafting a quarterback with their top pick. They want Tim Couch from the University of Kentucky. They want him so bad, that Dwight Clark, general manager for the Browns, had a dinner with him, and brought along Joe Montana. Montana was Couch's childhood idol. Last week, Couch announced he would be entering the draft, and did it only because he wanted to be selected as the top pick. So if everything goes as currently planned, Couch will be selected by the Browns. Next up on the board will be the Philadelphia Eagles.
If Couch is selected first, Eagles fans will be drooling. All season long they have been pitching to the Eagles management for Ricky Williams, but will this be the right move for the Eagles? The weaknesses for the Eagles on offense has to be at quarterback, wide receiver, and maybe one or two linemen, but the backfield seems solid. duce Staley, playing in his first full season, became only the sixth runner in Eagles history to break the 1,000-yard rushing mark for a season. Much of that running was done while suffering from a hernia. He was also the leader in pass receptions. He was a true workhorse. So what kind of a reward would it be to Duce for his efforts, if you select Ricky Williams. Sure, Duce says he can work with him in the backfield, he did it this season (sharing time with Charlie Garner). If the Eagles do select him, they could be a definite threat in the running game. Maybe the Eagles will use both in the backfield at the same time. Selecting Williams could also produce another draft choice for the Eagles. His selection could make Garner expendable and could be traded for a third-round draft pick. What about trading the second pick?
One of the options the Eagles have could be drop down in the draft and pick up some additional picks in the draft, but it may not be likely. After the monstrous trade between the Cardinals and San Diego to swap positions, set a precedence as far as trading draft picks at that position. There may not be any takers for it. If there is someone willing to do it, the Eagles could really benefit from it, given all the holes within the team. With all of this that has been written, which way will the Eagles go?
Many NFL experts expect the Eagles to select Williams, and then try to get a quarterback in the second round (hopefully either Cade McNown or Akali Smith), then a receiver in the third round (Tai Streets?). As the draft goes on for the Eagles this year, look for the emphasis on the offense. But for now all we can do is write and talk about everything. We will know the answers in the middle of April, when the draft takes place.