Mar 2, 2022; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Philadelphia Eagles general manger Howie Roseman talks to the media during the 2022 NFL Combine. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Eagles GM rues taking Jalen Reagor over Justin Jefferson

Philadelphia Eagles general manager Howie Roseman admitted Tuesday he should have selected Justin Jefferson instead of Jalen Reagor in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

Roseman made the comments in an interview on 94WIP-FM radio, one week after trading Reagor to Minnesota to join arguably the No. 1 receiver in the league — Jefferson. The Eagles took Reagor No. 21 overall in that draft, and Jefferson went next to the Vikings.

“It’s obvious, I’m not going to sit here and lie, we’d love to have that moment back,” Roseman said. “I can’t go back in time and change it. All I can do is to try and learn from it and get better.”

Roseman said he prioritized fit over taking the best player available.

“I think a lot of the message there is, we just have to take the best players at all times,” Roseman said. “We don’t have to worry so much about fit or what we have on the team. … We were looking for a specific role as opposed to just grading the players. That’s on me, 100 percent. At the end of the day, I’m responsible for all of that. But I also promise you one thing, if I make a mistake I’m going to do everything in my power to make it up.”

Roseman shipped Reagor to Minnesota for a seventh-round pick in 2023 and a conditional fourth-rounder in 2024. The 2024 pick will become a fifth-round pick if certain statistical marks aren’t met.

Reagor has just 64 catches for 695 yards and three touchdowns in 28 games (24 starts) over his first two seasons. Jefferson is a two-time Pro Bowler with 196 receptions for 3,016 yards and 17 TDs in 33 games (31 starts).

–Field Level Media

Dec 13, 2020; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts (L) talks with general manager Howie Roseman (R) before a game against the New Orleans Saints at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: Eagles GM Howie Roseman signs 3-year deal

Philadelphia Eagles general manager Howie Roseman agreed to a three-year contract extension, multiple outlets reported Thursday.

Roseman, 46, was in the final year of his contract before signing the deal. He has held the role since 2010.

Roseman helped to build Philadelphia’s Super Bowl LII championship team, the first in franchise history.

The Eagles have won four NFC East titles and have been to the playoffs six times during his tenure.

Philadelphia holds 10 picks in the upcoming NFL Draft in April, including three in the first round.

–Field Level Media

Jan 16, 2022; Tampa, Florida, USA; Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts (1) looks to pass the ball in the second half against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in a NFC Wild Card playoff football game at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Eagles GM says QB Jalen Hurts earned ’22 starting job

Eagles general manager Howie Roseman says Jalen Hurts did enough to remain Philadelphia’s starting quarterback entering 2022.

“We talk about Jalen and the growth he had, really, a first-year starter, second-year player, leading this team to the playoffs, tremendously impressed by his work ethic, his leadership,” Roseman said at his season-ending press conference Wednesday. “Last time we talked was during camp, and we said we wanted to see him take the bull by the horns, and he certainly did that.”

In his first full season as the starter, Hurts and first-year head coach Nick Sirianni helped the Eagles overcome a 2-5 start to reach the playoffs. Philadelphia’s season ended Sunday with a 31-15 wild-card loss at Tampa Bay.

Hurts, 23, passed for 3,144 yards and 16 touchdowns with nine interceptions and rushed for a team-high 784 yards and 10 TDs in 15 starts.

Roseman said his priority this offseason is building a better team around Hurts, a second-round draft pick in 2020. The Eagles have three first-round picks in the 2022 NFL Draft.

“I think for us, we’ve got to do whatever we can to continue to help him develop,” Roseman said. “And how do we do that? By surrounding him with really good players, players who continue to grow. … That’s on us to continue to build this team.”

–Field Level Media

Jan 3, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz looks on in front of quarterback Jalen Hurts (R) during the first quarter of a game against the Washington Football Team at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Eagles GM dishes on durability issues with Carson Wentz

Availability was the issue with Carson Wentz when it came time for the Philadelphia Eagles to chart their future late in 2020.

Eagles executive vice president and general manager Howie Roseman revealed in a radio interview Wednesday that durability was the chief complaint about the No. 2 overall pick in 2016.

“We loved Carson,” Roseman told Sports Radio 94 WIP in Philadelphia of Wentz, who was benched in favor of Jalen Hurts for the final month of last season — then traded to the Indianapolis Colts.

“But we played four playoff games and we needed our backup in every one.”

Hurts is the starter to open the 2021 season under new head coach Nick Sirianni. Wentz is expected to be ready to go for Week 1 in Indianapolis following a training camp foot surgery.

Roseman all but closed the door on trading for Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson after Sirianni named Hurts the Eagles’ starter for the opener against the Atlanta Falcons.

“He can play, and he can win,” Roseman said of Hurts.

After tearing his ACL in the final month of the 2017 regular season, Wentz missed the Eagles’ playoff run to the first Super Bowl victory in franchise history which was guided by Nick Foles. In 2019, he was forced to leave the Eagles’ wildcard playoff game with a head injury in the first quarter.

Colts head coach Frank Reich is intimately familiar with that history, having served as quarterbacks coach of the Eagles prior to being hired in Indianapolis.

Reich was relatively pointed in his comments on Wentz leading the team after the quarterback admitted he is unvaccinated, leading to a multiple-day absence that again called into question his availability.

“The franchise quarterback is a critically important position,” Reich said. “It’s without question a leadership position. As far as that goes, I would just say Carson, in many ways, is an exemplary leader. Are any of us the perfect leader? I don’t know. I don’t think so. We all have holes in our game somewhere and we’re all trying to get better and we’re all trying to learn. I’m trying to learn as a leader.”

–Field Level Media

NFC East Preseason Grades

DALLAS COWBOYS

Key Acquisitions: WR Allen Hurns, LB Leighton Vander Esch, OT Cameron Fleming, WR Tavon Austin, WR Deonte Thompson, FB Jamize Olawale, DE Kony Ealy, OT/OG Connor Williams, TE Dalton Schultz

Key Losses: TE Jason Witten, WR Dez Bryant, LB Anthony Hitchens, OG Jonathan Cooper, CB Orlando Scandrick, RB Alfred Morris, WR Brice Butler, CB Bene Benwikere, LB Kyle Wilber, DE Benson Mayowa, WR Ryan Switzer, FB Keith Smith

Things are never quiet in Dallas, and while the Cowboys didn’t make many flashy moves this spring, change came suddenly in April when two franchise icons with a combined 14 Pro Bowls left in less than a two-week span. Dez Bryant’s departure (via release) was the Cowboys’ choice, but Jason Witten’s retirement caught more than a few by surprise.

What’s left is an offense that must be driven by Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott, though its stellar front five remains a constant. The O-line got reinforcements in Connor Williams — who could start at left guard — and swing tackle Cameron Fleming, before a record-setting extension for Zack Martin. Receiver and tight end remain a concern, however, with a grab bag of unproven or uninspiring options at both spots. Dallas was probably right to drop out of the Sammy Watkins sweepstakes, but where will the explosive pass plays come from?

The defense lost a few rotation pieces, but much of the same group returns for a unit that quietly ranked eighth in yards and 10th in yards per play last season. First-rounder Leighton Vander Esch should contribute early, but his arrival could be a bad sign for Jaylon Smith’s progress or Sean Lee’s longevity. There are concerns up front, too, as Demarcus Lawrence did not receive the multi-year contract he coveted and starting defensive tackles David Irving (suspension) and Maliek Collins (broken foot) could miss time.

Offseason Grade: C

FLM Take: The Cowboys took care of their O-line, but the skill positions took a hit and few upgrades were made elsewhere.

 

NEW YORK GIANTS

Key Acquisitions: RB Saquon Barkley, OT Nate Solder, LB Alec Ogletree, RB Jonathan Stewart, OG Will Hernandez, OG Patrick Omameh, LB Kareem Martin, CB William Gay, WR Cody Latimer, S Michael Thomas, P Riley Dixon, LB Lorenzo Carter, DT B.J. Hill; OLB Connor Barwin

Key Losses: DE Jason Pierre-Paul, OG Justin Pugh, C Weston Richburg, CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, WR Brandon Marshall, LB Devon Kennard, LB Jonathan Casillas, CB Ross Cockrell, OG D.J. Fluker, OT Bobby Hart, RB Shane Vereen, WR Dwayne Harris, QB Geno Smith, P Brad Wing

New GM Dave Gettleman certainly doesn’t lack conviction. After concluding that Eli Manning still has a few quality years left, Gettleman went all-in on building the Giants’ offensive line and running game, sparing no expense in the process.

Nate Solder’s record-breaking contract ($15.5 million annually, most in NFL history) is tough to swallow, but if it upgrades both tackle spots — with Ereck Flowers moving to the right side — the Giants’ offense should be much better. Patrick Omameh (signed from the Jaguars) and second-rounder Will Hernandez will boost the interior, which has big shoes to will with Justin Pugh and Weston Richburg out the door. On top of it all, Gettleman bet big on Saquon Barkley while passing on a potential QB of the future. If Odell Beckham Jr. returns to 100 percent, and both sides work out a new long term contract, the pieces for an offensive turnaround are in place.

New York’s defense might need more work. Especially after it traded Jason Pierre-Paul, who had nearly a third of the team’s sacks in 2017. Acquiring Alec Ogletree filled a void in the middle, but pass-rush concerns are warranted, as third-round pick Lorenzo Carter remains very raw as a rusher. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie could be missed as well, especially with uncertainty about Eli Apple’s reliability.

Offseason Grade: C+

FLM Take: The Giants’ offense should be in for a significant rebound, and a better running game would take pressure off the defense. Still, Gettleman’s approach felt a bit antiquated, and he could rue passing on Sam Darnold.

 

PHILADELPHIA EAGLES

Key Acquisitions: DE Michael Bennett, WR Mike Wallace, DT Haloti Ngata, TE Dallas Goedert, TE Richard Rodgers, LB Corey Nelson, WR Markus Wheaton, WR Kamar Aiken, RB Matt Jones

Key Losses: DE Vinny Curry, CB Patrick Robinson, LB Mychal Kendricks, RB LeGarrette Blount, TE Brent Celek, TE Trey Burton, WR Torrey Smith, DT Beau Allen, S Corey Graham, P Donnie Jones; LB Paul Worrilow

Many Super Bowl teams get gutted during the ensuing free agency, but the Eagles weathered the storm pretty well, managing to re-sign linebacker Nigel Bradham while letting several rotation players walk. Perhaps the two most talented departures came via release, as Philly let Vinny Curry and Mychal Kendricks go to save cap space.

While some players walked out the door, GM Howie Roseman wasn’t shy about bringing a few in, restocking a deep defensive line with veterans Michael Bennett (via trade) and Haloti Ngata (free agency). He also replaced Torrey Smith with a cheaper, more versatile deep threat in Mike Wallace, while the duo of Richard Rodgers (free agency) and Dallas Goedert (draft) should offset the losses of Brent Celek and Trey Burton at tight end.

The team navigated its delicate quarterback situation well, extending Nick Foles through 2019 while giving him a nice bonus as thanks for helping the team to a Super Bowl LII title. All signs point to Carson Wentz being cleared from his torn ACL to play in Week 1, which should keep Philadelphia in position to again contend for the Lombardi Trophy.

Outside of Goedert, the Eagles didn’t draft many players who are likely to contribute early, and they were one of only two teams (along with the Titans, who had four) to come away with fewer than six selections.

Offseason Grade: B

FLM Take: Few GMs manage the cap as effectively as Roseman, who did well to keep a Super Bowl-caliber team mostly intact. Here’s a look back at his strategy when taking over for Chip Kelly in 2015.

 

WASHINGTON REDSKINS

Key Acquisitions: QB Alex Smith, WR Paul Richardson, OLB Pernell McPhee, DT Da’Ron Payne, RB Derrius Guice, CB Orlando Scandrick, QB Kevin Hogan, DT Tim Settle; CB Adonis Alexander

Key Losses: QB Kirk Cousins, CB Kendall Fuller, CB Bashaud Breeland, DE Trent Murphy, C Spencer Long, S DeAngelo Hall, WR Ryan Grant, WR Terrelle Pryor, LB Will Compton, OLB Junior Galette, TE Niles Paul

You can criticize Washington for bungling Kirk Cousins’ contract situation in previous offseasons, but the team did the best it could this spring by landing Alex Smith in the QB carousel. Whether or not the cautious but steady signal-caller will fit perfectly in Jay Gruden’s aggressive offense, Washington was smart to grab a stable chair long before the music stopped.

Other than Smith’s extension (four years, $94 million, $71 million guaranteed) and the signing of wideout Paul Richardson (five years, $45 million), Dan Snyder’s wallet took less of a hit than usual, an approach that should yield compensatory picks for Cousins (third-rounder), Spencer Long (fifth), Ryan Grant (sixth) and Terrelle Pryor (sixth) in 2018. Richardson’s health will be key for a thinned out receiving corps, and 2017 sixth-rounder Chase Roullier must step up to replace Long at the pivot. Getting the dynamic Derrius Guice, who could quickly become an offensive centerpiece, late in Round 2 was a coup.

On defense, rookies Da’Ron Payne and Tim Settle could provide a similar boost to a poor run defense, and talented but injury-prone Pernell McPhee was a great buy-low candidate. The team also re-signed linebacker Zach Brown, but major questions remain at cornerback, where Kendall Fuller (part of the package for Smith) and Bashaud Breeland (unsigned) are gone. 2017 third-rounder Fabian Moreau must step up, especially considering Orlando Scandrick’s decline in recent years.

Offseason Grade: B-

FLM Take: It might not bear out in a tough division, but Washington did well to reload despite losing significant talent.