When Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid announced before the 2010 season that Kevin Kolb was his quarterback of the future, I had an image of Kolb playing in Philadelphia for the next eight to ten seasons.
So you can only imagine how surprised I was when Kolb was benched for Michael Vick just two games into the 2010 season. And less than a year later, Kevin Kolb was gone.
Despite starting in just seven games in his first four seasons, the Eagles’ quarterback was one of the most highly touted players in the 2011 offseason.
Original speculation had Kolb heading to a team such as the Seattle Seahawks or Arizona Cardinals, and sure enough, it was the Cardinals who acquired the services of 27-year old Kevin Kolb.
In a trade that ranks as much as thievery as any particular trade in recent memory, the Eagles sent quarterback Kevin Kolb to the Arizona Cardinals for former Pro Bowl cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie AND a second round draft pick.
(Which I correctly predicted before it happened, if I may brag about this.)
The Cardinals inked Kolb to a five-year, $63 million deal, including $21 million guaranteed. But through one season, he’s been a total bust, leading the Cardinals to three wins in nine games, and tossing just nine touchdowns against eight interceptions.
Then again, what do we care? That’s not our problem anymore, and any struggles for the Arizona quarterback will only help Philadelphia in the long run.
When he joined the Eagles, Rodgers-Cromartie was expected to immediately start at right cornerback, which had been the biggest weakness for the Eagles in 2010. DRC, as he was known, had picked off six passes as a rookie in 2008 and earned a Pro Bowl selection in 2009 before suffering through a 2010 season that saw him ranked as the worst cornerback in the NFL, according to Pro Football Focus.
Expectations were high that he would rebound though, but a few days after he was acquired, the Eagles signed Nnamdi Asomugha, the top free agent player available. This pushed DRC to the slot, a position that he was not comfortable with.
And it showed during Rodgers-Cromartie’s poor 2011 season. He played in 13 games, missing three due to an ankle sprain that was actually a blessing for the Eagles. He missed seven tackles and didn’t intercept a single pass all year.
So neither Kolb to Arizona nor Rodgers-Cromartie to Philadelphia worked out for either of their teams in the 2011 season. The difference may actually be the second round pick which Philly received, and they’ll get to (try) to put that to good use in the 2012 NFL draft next month.
There has also been some speculation that the Eagles will trade current starting cornerback Asante Samuel this offseason, meaning DRC would immediately be placed back into a starting role. I think he would turn back into his old self (not necessarily a Pro Bowler, but definitely an above average starter).