The Eagles could do worse than Chase Daniel.
The Philadelphia Eagles‘ quarterback situation is murky. Sam Bradford did not live up to expectations as the team’s starter in 2015 and it looks like the Eagles aren’t too crazy about bringing him back. They’re ready to move in a different direction.
The next logical question is who the Eagles would bring in to replace Bradford. Though he didn’t set the world on fire last season, Bradford wasn’t necessarily a disaster in Philadelphia. If the Eagles were to go into next season without re-signing Bradford or bringing in another quarterback, Mark Sanchez would likely be the team’s starter. Needless to say, that is not an ideal situation.
But one pending free agent often linked to the Eagles this offseason is Chase Daniel, who new Eagles Head Coach Doug Pederson worked with in Kansas City. Daniel isn’t a big name and, frankly, he probably won’t win the Eagles any Super Bowl titles. However, Pederson seems to think he can be more than just a backup, per Ian Rapoport.
Daniel may not be the sexiest option for the Eagles, but he may be their best alternative if Bradford isn’t in the team’s plans for 2016. Bradford’s agent is asking for way too much money and signing him to long-term deal would be irresponsible, especially considering his extensive injury history.
Daniel, on the other hand, would be a far cheaper option and has spent three years working with Pederson. At 29 years old, Daniel has only started two games in his seven-year career. That doesn’t sound too inspiring on paper, but looking big picture, leaning on Daniel for a year or two offers some benefits to the Eagles.
First thing’s first, maybe there’s some truth behind Pederson’s claim to Daniel being more than just a backup. For the first four years of his career, Daniel was sitting behind Drew Brees in New Orleans and served as Alex Smith‘s backup for the past three years in Kansas City. Daniel has never been given an opportunity to prove himself in a starting role at the professional level and, if the Eagles are lucky, maybe he could turn out to be a serviceable starter. This is best case scenario, but stranger things have happened in the NFL.
More realistically, Daniel will be used as a placeholder for the Eagles until they find a long-term answer. Maybe the Eagles pick a quarterback in this year’s draft and give him a year to sit behind Daniel, like what they did with Donovan McNabb in 1999 when he spent the better part of his rookie year learning from Doug Pederson(!). If not, Daniel can have a year to show what he can do. If it works out, great. If not, the Eagles can tank for Deshaun Watson.
I’m only half-kidding when I say that, by the way.
Moral of the story here is the Eagles could do a lot worse than Chase Daniel. Would it be nice if the Eagles picked a franchise QB in this year’s draft? Of course. Unfortunately, this year’s quarterback class isn’t great and all of the top QB prospects have bust potential. If the Eagles move on from Bradford and don’t feel good about any quarterbacks in the draft, Daniel could very well be the next starting quarterback in Philadelphia.