As has been the case for basically every season since Donovan McNabb was in Philadelphia, there is once again some sort of question or competition at the quarterback position for the Philadelphia Eagles.
I would be very surprised to see the same starter play in all 16 games. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw three different guys play at least a little bit throughout the year. The optimal situation is to just find that one guy, but of course, this is not a perfect world. Injuries happen, and sometimes, the guy that looked great at the beginning of the year shows that he really isn’t all that good. There’s going to be some trial and error regarding the quarterback position this year.
Since it’s still unknown even who the three quarterbacks to make the team will be, I am going to predict the ceiling and floor for each quarterback on the roster in terms of wins in the 2015 season. The win totals I came up with are under the assumption that that player starts the majority of the games in the season. Here’s what I decided on:
Ceiling: 12 wins
Floor: 7 wins
There is no question that Bradford has the highest potential and highest ceiling of any quarterback on this roster. But, that’s one of the few questions that is answered regarding Bradford. Is he healthy enough? Will having a better group of weapons actually make that much of a difference? Will he excel in Chip Kelly’s offense? It seems like most of these questions have general answers at this point, but none of them has been firmly answered.
Best case scenario, Bradford works out great and they go on to not only win the NFC East, but also be a top two team in the conference. With all the great players on the offensive side of the ball, this is totally possible. Worse case scenario, Bradford struggles to get fully healthy and is hampered for most of the season. He spends most of it shaking off the rust and they miss the playoffs with a losing record. Either way, he seems like the best option at this point.
Ceiling: 10 wins
Floor: 7 wins
We’ve basically already seen what Sanchez can do in an Eagles jersey. He can get you some wins, but he’s just not good enough to take the team to the next level or win a playoff game. He’s be a good fill-in guy once in a while, but as a regular starter, or the team’s starter for all 16 games, it would not result in a playoff win no matter what.
The good thing about Sanchez is that there are less unknowns surrounding him. Even if he struggles, they can always just run the ball a lot and have their defense and special teams carry them (which often happened in games last year). Like Bradford, I don’t see a floor of fewer than seven wins.
Ceiling: 6 wins
Floor: 3 wins
If Barkley even makes the team I’d be surprised, but if he started the majority of the team’s games at quarterback, the season would be a disaster. He hasn’t appeared to improve at all since being drafted, and I don’t expect him to suddenly show massive improvement this preseason. There’s no way this team could win more than six games if he started the majority of them, even with all the talent around him. At worst, they could just cut him out of the game plan and have him pass minimally while focusing on the run, but with a one-dimensional attack like that, you can only get so far.
Ceiling: 7 wins
Floor: 2 wins
I think Tebow has a slightly higher ceiling than Barkley, mainly because he’s shown that he can at least be the quarterback on a team that wins a playoff game. Barkley has barely thrown a good pass in a regular season game, while Tebow has actually made good plays here and there.
The bottom line is Tebow has experience and could probably employ some divine intervention to help him get to seven wins. But, because he hasn’t really played in a couple years, he could also be a total disaster. Starting him in a regular season game would mean they’ve already had a disaster somewhere in their season, so no situation is actually good that involves Tebow as the starter. Luckily, the percent chance of this happening is slim.
It’s been so long since the same quarterback started all 16 games in an Eagles jersey in a season that it’s basically expected that multiple guys will end up playing at least some amount. I don’t think this season will be any different. Hopefully, it’s only Sanchez and Bradford starting games (or even better, just Bradford), but you can never count out the possibility that someone else could be forced to play.
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