Eagles Free Agent Outlook: Quarterbacks

Image courtesy Philly.com

Image courtesy Philly.com

Over the next few days leading up to free agency, Pattison Ave will be addressing the Eagles needs while evaluating each position.

Current position addressed: Quarterback.

Nick Foles was given the reigns by Chip Kelly to lead the Eagles for the 2014 season. After an inconsistent start to the season, one that was quite different from his 27 touchdown – 2 interception 2013 season, Foles finished the season injured with a broken collarbone. Mark Sanchez would finish the season as the Eagles starter, and provide an cloudier out look leading up to the 2015 free agency period and draft.

Despite inconsistent, Foles started 8 games for the 10-6 Eagles and led the team to a 6-2 start. The former Arizona Wildcat finished the season with 2,163 yards, 13 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. What was most worrisome was not Foles’ stats, but more so his regression from the year before. The quarterback was routinely under pressure, and because of that, developed a bad habit of throwing off his back foot. Another disturbing trend with Foles is his propensity for injury. In three seasons, Foles has sustained three injuries (broken hand in 2012, concussion in 2013, broken collarbone in 2014). Whether both trends continue as Foles goes forward remains to be seen.

Then there is Sanchez. The former USC quarterback came to Philadelphia to rebuild his career, and appeared to do so in his first few starts. But then Mr. Butt Fumble returned, as he accounted for 15 turnovers over the nine games he played.

The final member of the Eagles quarterback trio is Matt Barkley. The USC alumnus will be entering his third season in the NFL and has failed to make any sort of impact in limited action.

It goes without saying, Chip Kelly has an idea of who he wants his quarterback to be, and none of the current crop on the roster appears to meet Kelly’s needs. Marcus Mariota is what Kelly wants, but if the Eagles are not able to trade up to grab the Oregon quarterback, here are three potential options available in a rather lackluster free agent pool.

  • Jake Locker: As mentioned previously in the Eagles rumors piece, Locker could be Kelly’s next reclamation project. The former Washington Huskie has an offensive skill set that would intrigue the Eagles coach, but has failed to complete a full 16 game season, often suffering through a variety of injuries each season.
  • Mark Sanchez: Would a second tour of duty work for Sanchez and Kelly? Well, the Sanchize’s other potential landing spot has been locked up after the Buffalo Bills traded for Matt Cassel from Minnesota. Sanchez completed one of his best offensive seasons, in limited action. To succeed again, the former Trojan would need to limit turnovers and take more chances down the field.
  • Colt McCoy. The quarterback that Washington fans thought would be their savior after he beat Dallas. In hindsight, McCoy is a backup quarterback that doesn’t take many chances, often checking down to tight ends. Would the former Texas Longhorn be a fit in Chip Kelly’s spread offense? McCoy has the athleticism that Kelly craves, but not enough of a skill set to lead the team.

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