Posts Tagged ‘Brian Dawkins’
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Wolverine is dead.
OK, that’s a little dramatic. But it sure does feel like a death in the family. Brian Dawkins, the heart and soul of the Philadelphia Eagles, has left as a free agent, signing a 5 year, $17 million contract with the Denver Broncos today. Eagle Nation is sad. John Clark of Philadelphia NBC10 sports called today “one of the worst days in Eagle history.” Difficult to argue. Flashbacks of this front office letting go players like Jeremiah Trotter, Duce Staley, Hugh Douglas, Troy Vincent and Bobby Taylor come to mind. (Reggie White was a different regime.) The fans, this one included, cry and yell, how could they, he can still play, he’s a team leader, we need him. Today the howl is louder than ever before because Dawkins, as great a player as he is, is an even greater person. How, we cry, can an organization that puts so much emphasis on bringing in “good guys,” let go one of the best that has ever played here, a first ballot hall of famer?
Here’s how. You take the emotion out. This is a business. I love Brian Dawkins. But he is 35 years old and his skills are in decline. Yes, his skills have been at an extraordinarily high level for many years, so that when he loses a step, he is still better than a lot of others at his position. But he is not what he once was. The Eagles offered him a two year deal worth about $5 million total. When Denver offered him 5 years $17 million, he has to take that. And the Eagles are right not to match it. Again, take the emotion out. Think like a business person. Successful business people do not overpay unless they absolutely have to. And here, the Eagles did not. It was the right decision, regardless of how well he does in Denver.
Bill Walsh once said that it is better to let go of a player a year too early than a year too late. Is it a year too early on Dawkins? Perhaps. But remember how bad he looked early on last year? Remember how everyone was saying he was done? Remember the T. O. touchdown? Yes, he came on late in the year. He was defensive player of the month of December. But did you notice that after the first several games, he wasn’t on the field every play? Did you notice he never covered the tight end? Did you notice that they game planned around him? He was going to be a part time player for the Birds this year. The Denver deal is really a 2 year, $10.8 million deal. That makes him the fourth highest paid safety in football. Is he worth it? Take the emotion out. He is not. Yes he is a great leader, just like Trotter, Staley, Douglas, Vincent and Taylor were. But the team survived, and thrived without them. It will do the same without the Wolverine.
Hey, its not all bad today. I have heard that the Eagles are in trade talks with the Browns for Braylon Edwards. This makes sense on a lot of levels. Obviously, the Eagles need a wide receiver. They are not interested in TJ Houshmanzadeh after his agent lied to them. He told them that TJ was willing to take less money to play in Philly, then proceeded to ask them for more money than anyone else has offered. No TJ in Philly. Anquan Boldin is the sexy name, and the Eagles have been linked to him for over a year. He has two years left on his contract, and the Cardinals have been adamant about not moving him, but they will for a first and a third. Do you see Andy Reid giving up a first and a third for anything, other than a 25 pound ham? I don’t. Ocho Cinco? I’ll pass, thanks. I like Nate Washington, but is he that much better than what the Birds currently have? No. Edwards is coming. He has a year left on his deal. He wants out of Cleveland. (Who doesn’t?) The new regime there has already started cleaning house with the Kellen “I’m a bleeping soldier” Winslow trade. Edwards is coming. Remember, you heard it here first.