The Philadelphia Eagles have made this offseason a very eventful one, especially for head coach Andy Reid. At first, the organization focused on securing their own talent, something the Eagles have done little in the past. It seemed to the ardent Eagles followers that there was a change in the philosophy. Before this offseason, if a player was in their thirties or commanded big bucks, no matter how successful their career, the Eagles placed a skewed value on the player.
During this offseason, the Eagles re-signed guard Evan Mathis, defensive tackle Derek Landri, defensive end Trent Cole, wide receiver DeSean Jackson and running back LeSean McCoy. Additionally, the Eagles acquired former Houston Texans linebacker DeMeco Ryans and former Buffalo Bill tackle Demetress Bell.
On paper, the Eagles did an exceptional job at taking care of their ‘own’, enhancing players faith in the front office and filling in key need positions through free agency. I know I am pleased.
And then, the improbable happened. The Philadelphia Eagles had a superb 2012 draft. What? That can not be so. By most experts, the Eagles were graded as an ‘A’ with their draft selections, highlighted by Mississippi States defensive tackle Fletcher Cox in the first round and Georgia cornerback Brandon Boykins in the fourth round.
The Eagles fanbase has surged with confidence as of late. Quarterback Michael Vick will likely improve in the turnover aspect of his game. LeSean McCoy and DeSean Jackson are finally happy. Assuredly, the Eagles will score alot of points. The defense played the last four games of the 2011 season completely taut.
Many pundits thought the 2012 Eagles season would be head coach Andy Reid “make or break” season. Recently, the Eagles threw a monkey wrench into that outlook. Forever the “money man” behind the scene and sometimes too public to stomach, Eagles president Joe Banner declared he was stepping down for “other challenges”.
The Eagles promoted from within Don Smolenski as their new president. The timing of the decision is quite odd, considering the Eagles are in a position of strength entering the 2012 season. Why would Joe Banner step down, now?
Over the years, there has been rumbling of a power struggle within the organization between head coach Andy Reid and president Joe Banner. I believe the winner has emeged. Andy Reid had football autonomy in the past, without Joe Banner meddling in on everyday affairs. Owner Jeffery Lurie knew that was when the team had the most success of fulfilling their championship dream.
Jeffery Lurie can love Joe Banner for saving him a ton of money, but he even knows that a championship is all that matters now. It looks like Lurie has now put all his eggs in the basket with Andy Reid.