Judging by the looks of things, the Eagles are already in a better spot than they were in a year ago at this time.
Look at the bright side. Things look a whole lot better now than they did a year ago. On March 23rd, 2016, the Philadelphia Eagles had a pretty busy day. There was an hour long discussion between then-rookie head coach Doug Pederson at the NFL owners meetings during the coaches’ breakfast. The Eagles also made headlines by snatching wide receiver Rueben Randle away from a division rival, the New York Giants.
What the Randle signing was supposed to mean:
Randle’s one-year deal was supposed to be the first step in solving the riddle at wide receiver. As the team debated ideas like whether or not to move Jordan Matthews to the outside, it was becoming more and more apparent they’d need to find someone who could play the role of “possession receiver” and give then-starting quarterback Sam Bradford a target in the red zone.
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Randle never missed a game with the Giants and accumulated 188 catches for 2,644 yards and 20 touchdowns in his time there. He contributed from both the outside and the slot, but the Giants gave up on him. That gave everyone interested the impression that Philadelphia was his final shot to prove he could play in the NFL.
For a myriad of reasons, he never got going in Philly, and he had a difficult and disappointing preseason, ultimately leading to his release on August 28th. He wasn’t even allowed to play out the one year he was signed for.
Better days are ahead.
What a difference a year makes. The Eagles also gambled on wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham, and he didn’t work out either. Bradford is long gone, but his trade, eventually, led to the Eagles landing at the 14th overall selection of the 2017 NFL Draft. The Eagles, needing to find better options at wide receiver than Randle and Green-Beckham, have upgraded by landing two of their targets, Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith.
Most importantly, we’ve gone from listening to Pederson talking about the team attending Carson Wentz‘s pro day (without him for whatever reason) to having Wentz in the fold. They didn’t just consider drafting a quarterback. They made it happen, and they got the right one. This team seems to be on the way to a bright future. Now they’ll just need to build around him.
It appears things are going as well as any of us could have hoped.