Indications are getting stronger and stronger that Kevin Kolb could be on the move. Last week, Eagles general manager Howie Roseman talked openly with Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer about the fourth-year quarterback’s trade value.
"There are a lot of teams looking for quarterbacks," Roseman said. "It's a quarterback-driven league. And when you have a quarterback who's proven what he can do in the NFL and has the characteristics that Kevin Kolb has, there's going to be a lot of interest from teams."
Obviously these sentiments are not a declaration that Kolb is on the trading block. But on Monday, Sports Illustrated’s Peter King wrote that there’s at least one team willing to trade a first-round pick for the 26-year-old.
Whatever team it is likely has a pick late in the first round, as King says Andy Reid is waiting to see if a team with an earlier first-round pick might step up.
If you’re up for speculating, the best guess for which team talked to Reid would be the Seahawks. They’re picking 25th overall. Matt Hasselbeck is a free agent, and Seattle runs an offense well suited for Kolb’s skills.
The only other teams in need of a quarterback who are drafting outside of the top 10 are the Vikings (12th), Dolphins (15th) and Jaguars (16th). It’s doubtful any club would be willing to offer a pick in the top half of Round One.
On the surface, it may seem a little strange that the Eagles would be willing to trade their 26-year-old passer. Reading between the lines, the club still isn’t completely sold on Michael Vick. Philly could have signed the 30-year-old Vick to a long-term contract after this past season. Instead, they franchise tagged him.
If Vick plays at a high level again this season, his price will only be steeper next year (especially considering that Peyton Manning’s contract will reset the quarterback market). The only reason the Eagles would delay Vick’s long-term deal is if they had serious reservations about his ability to stay healthy or maintain his 2010 magic. Keep in mind, Vick tailed off down the stretch after teams started exploiting his presnap shortcomings.
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Kolb will only cost the Eagles $1.392 million in 2011. That’s a great price for a backup quarterback, let alone one who has been groomed to take over the franchise. However, keeping him for another year would be counterproductive. If Kolb rides the bench again, his trade value will plummet. Plus, like Vick, he’ll be a free agent in 2012 anyway. The Eagles won’t be able to keep both.
Thus, thanks to the financial factors of pro football, the Eagles must decide now whether to keep Vick or Kolb. They seem to like Vick better and could get more in a trade for Kolb. That simplifies what would have been a complicated situation.
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