Philadelphia Eagles Mid Season Grades: Resigning Deals

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Nov 2, 2014; Houston, TX, USA; Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jeremy Maclin (18) runs as Houston Texans defensive back

Andre Hal

(29) defends during the game at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Big Mac Attack

In 2013, the arrival of head coach Chip Kelly brought optimism and hope to the Eagles team, but it also brought lots of change.   One of the changes that happened by accident was the loss of wide receiver Jeremy Maclin.   Maclin tore his ACL in his right knee and spent the entire season rehabbing that knee.   The issue complicated the Eagles decision, as 2013 was the final year of Jeremy Maclin’s contract.

So the Eagles were faced with a dilemma.   Did they want to sign to a long term discounted contract to account for the possibility of future struggles with the rehabbed knee, or did they want to attempt a one-year “prove it” contract before committing to the player who had not achieved his potential?

The decision was taken out of the Eagles hands when Maclin himself insisted upon a one-year contract  worth $5.5 million.   By doing so, Maclin assumed the risk that comes with coming back from an injury:  if he would not be back 100% or if he did not perform well for Chip Kelly, his gamble would not have paid out.

Fortunately, his gamble is paying off.   By the halfway point, Jeremy Maclin has already near his career high of 964 yards (he’s at 790) and 10 touchdowns (he’s at 8).  His average yard per catch has jumped up to 17.6 yards (from a previous high of 13.8 yards).  But most of all, he’s doing this as the number one wide receiver, not as a player benefiting from the shadows of former teammate DeSean Jackson.  His production at the wide receiver position has been a large part of the success of the team.  Without Maclin, this Eagles team would struggle in the passing game.

Maclin will have to press ahead without starting quarterback Nick Foles, who’s injury will likely have him out for four to six weeks.   In the meantime, he will have the opportunity to play with backup quarterback Mark Sanchez.

"“Mark can play. There’s no question about it. I think the sky’s the limit for him here because we have so much more talent than he had in New York.  We have confidence in him as a quarterback. With his demeanor and the way he carries himself along with the way he played in the preseason. I think he played exceptionally well.” – Jeremy Maclin"

Maclin has not only stepped up on the field this year, but is silently becoming a leader for the offensive unit as well.  The one – year deal will certainly place Maclin into a position for a big payout at the end of the season.

Philadelphia Eagles Mid Season Grade:  This is another great deal for the Eagles.