I read the headlines, just like you. The bloggers are lighting it up with rumors, and I read them and wonder if anything is true out there. One of the more unusual reports or rumors or whatever you call them these days out on the Discussion Boards is that the Eagles are trading for Buffalo wide receiver Lee Evans, which literally is as shocking as it is absurd on many levels.
But that's the time of the year. We're in the latter stages of free agency and we're in countdown mode for the draft. It's an exciting time, frustrating because nothing is actually happening but nerve-wracking because the level of anticipation is high.
I talked briefly Friday with Adam Caplan from Sirius/XM NFL radio and Scout.com trying to find out what he has heard, because Caplain talks to a lot of people around the league and he has a good feel for what is happening out there.
"I'm convinced," said Caplan, building drama as he paused, "that the Eagles are going to do something major in the next two weeks."
"Like what?" I asked.
"Something. There are a lot of things going on," said Caplan.
I hear this same chatter every year, it seems. This player is on the trading block. That player is available at the right price. The one-time standout player is about to be cut because a roster bonus is due.
How much of it ever comes true? Ten percent? Twenty percent?
Let me tell you how it works from my point of view, and I'm being totally honest about it. I know the Eagles talk every day to teams around the league. I know that names are bandied back and forth in an exploratory kind of way. I know that "tires are kicked" by every NFL team, every single day. And I know that the Eagles keep things so closely guarded that only about four or five people know what they are actually planning to do before they go out and do it.
I'm not one of those people.
So, during these times, I'm part fan in the sense that I'm following the game of the game. I love mock drafts, because exactly zero of them have any kind of clue what a team drafting 21 and 28 might do six weeks from now. I keep reading, for example, how the Eagles have so many holes along their offensive line, and I think to myself, "Self, the Eagles have Stacy Andrews at right tackle or one of the guard spots, Shawn Andrews in the plans at right guard or left tackle or even right tackle, an emerging Nick Cole who showed he can be a starter in this league ... where are all of these holes, self?"
I read every day as media types chronicle The Leonard Weaver Negotiations. Amazing. The Eagles haven't said a word about it -- although "sources" indicate ... and every day I wonder if this whole thing is a smokescreen. You know how many times I've been in a Leonard Weaver conversation at work? About three times -- with the guys I sit with during lunch. Andy Reid isn't exactly inviting me in to discuss my feelings on personnel.
There really is no point to this article. I'm sitting in my office on Friday, two weeks after free agency started, and I'm wondering what happens next. I happen to think the Eagles have a roster that is pretty darn good right now. I look around the NFC East and think, "Who is a better team than the Eagles?" The Giants are right there, the Packers are probably pretty good, I can't take the Vikings all that seriously because of their quarterback situation, Washington still has major question marks and even without Terrell Owens, I think the Cowboys have some major, major issues.
Who else? Carolina? Sure, if Jake Delhomme doesn't melt down. New Orleans? Not with that defense. Arizona? A good team, but get them away from that Dome and they are nothing special.
I see an Eagles team that still needs a few pieces, but certainly has a lot in place and has all kinds of assets to work with moving forward. I like this team right now, and I expect to love it after the draft. There is more work to be done here. How the Eagles accomplish their list of needs -- as I see it, running back, tight end, etc -- I have no idea.
I'm following along, just like you. At times it is humorous, frustrating, fascinating how rumors are created and then how they spread as if there is a kernel of truth to them. There are still six weeks to go before the draft. We're going to have a lot of fun waiting and wondering if the Eagles have something up their sleeves as so many folks out there think they do.