Eagles mailbag — Who are 5 best players from Super Bowl team?

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Eagles mailbag — Who are 5 best players from Super Bowl team?

We got to the first few of your questions on Monday (see story), but there are still plenty more to go. 

Let's not waste anymore time: 

The Eagles could certainly stand to pick up an offensive lineman or two during this year's draft, but they're in a great position this year. They have most of their starters coming back this season. And coming off a Super Bowl title, they are in a position in which they really can draft best player available. That's obviously something most teams say every year, but coming off a championship, it's a lot easier to do. Now, they're obviously not going to draft a quarterback and it would be a little surprising if they went with a corner. But there are a bunch of positions they can go after — O-line, defensive tackle, linebacker, receiver. There are a lot of ways they can go. 

This isn't easy to narrow it down to just five, but here's what I came up with: Carson Wentz, Nick Foles, Fletcher Cox, Malcolm Jenkins and Zach Ertz. 

I had to include both quarterbacks. Wentz was on his way to being the NFL MVP and then Foles went on to win Super Bowl MVP. They don't hoist the Lombardi Trophy without both of them. From there it got a little tougher. I still think Cox is the best non-QB on the team and he raised his level in the playoffs. Jenkins is overlooked way too much. He's so important to the team. I gave Ertz the nod over Alshon Jeffery because Ertz was more consistent and he did score the game-winning touchdown in the Super Bowl. He's also higher on the list of the best tight ends in the league than Jeffery is on the list of best receivers. 

The biggest omissions were Brandon Graham, Jeffery and the offensive linemen. It's hard to pick one of the guys on the line, but you could make an argument for any of the three guys on the right side. 

I actually agree that DL, specifically DT, is an underrated need for the Eagles, especially if Beau Allen leaves in free agency and if Vinny Curry doesn't come back. The problem with signing guys in free agency is that overpaying is the norm and the Eagles already have a ton of money invested in their defensive line. Including Curry, the Eagles have $47.2 million tied up in cap space with just their top six defensive linemen. It's hard to see adding to that number. 

I think they ought to try really hard to bring him back. What Nigel Bradham did last season was huge for the Eagles and it's getting overlooked too much. His filling in as the defensive signal caller once Jordan Hicks went down was huge. He's also super comfortable in Jim Schwartz's system. Bradham is coming off his best season as a pro, so he might be in demand, but I agree that the Eagles really need to bring him back. 

Brian Dawkins chooses longtime teammate for Hall of Fame intro

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Brian Dawkins chooses longtime teammate for Hall of Fame intro

Brian Dawkins has chosen longtime teammate and close friend Troy Vincent to introduce him this summer at Dawk's Hall of Fame induction.

Dawkins was selected in February for enshrinement in the 2018 Pro Football Hall of Fame induction class.

"The presenter that will actually be on the stage will be Troy Vincent," Dawkins said in a video posted on the Pro Football Hall of Fame's website.

"My teammate in Philadelphia. We came there the same year. Almost from Day 1 he kind of ... not kind of, he took me under his wing on becoming a professional. Not just a football player but a professional. The details. The details that he went through, the particulars of how he played the position of cornerback was the same way he lived his life (and ran) his businesses that he had off the field.

"He's a guy I can call anytime. Any time of night. And tell him 100 percent all what's going on with me, and I know he's not going to judge me, and it's not going to leave his lips (for) anybody else.

"And the most important thing for me, being a man of faith, is that I know he's going to pray with me. So all those things combined are the reasons why Troy was the perfect guy to introduce me to the Hall of Fame."

Vincent, a native of Trenton and graduate of Pennsbury High in Fairless Hills, Bucks County, spent his first four seasons with the Dolphins before signing an offer sheet with the Eagles before the 1996 season that the Dolphins didn't match.

The Eagles drafted Dawkins in the second round a month after signing Vincent, and the two spent eight years together in the secondary, reaching the playoffs five times and the NFC Championship Game three times.

During those eight seasons, Vincent reached Pro Bowls and Dawkins made the first three of his nine Pro Bowls.

Vincent retired after the 2006 season and Dawkins after the 2011 season.

Dawkins, Vincent and Eric Allen are the only Eagles defensive backs picked to five or more Pro Bowls.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame 2018 enshrinement ceremony is scheduled for Aug. 4 in Canton, Ohio.

Dawkins' former Eagles teammate, Terrell Owens, will also be inducted. He hasn't yet announced who will present him.

Dawkins will be the 21st former Eagle inducted into the Hall of Fame but only the ninth who spent the majority of his career with the Eagles.

Was Carson Wentz sending Nick Foles a message with Instagram video?

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Was Carson Wentz sending Nick Foles a message with Instagram video?

Offseason quarterback controversies are a rite of passage in the NFL. A time-honored tradition, really. 

We’ve certainly had our share in Philadelphia over the years. There were calls for Ron Jaworski to sit in favor of a young Randall Cunningham. Then cries for Jim McMahon to take Randall’s place. When Andy Reid drafted Kevin Kolb in 2007, that began a groundswell that he was the better choice than Donovan McNabb. Of course, most recently we had the Michael Vick/Nick Foles back and forth. To look back now, it seems silly these were even debates.

Most of the time, when you have these “controversies,” it generally means you have no quarterback on your roster. Not always. The 49ers in the late-80’s and early-90’s had Joe Montana and Steve Young, both Hall of Famers and all-time great quarterbacks. Both also won Super Bowls for San Francisco. But that is the exception. So is the 2018 Philadelphia Eagles’ situation.

I use the word “situation” and not “controversy.” Because there is no controversy. If Wentz is cleared by the Eagles’ medical staff, he starts Week 1. Period. What Foles did was incredible and will go down as one of the great — if not the greatest — stretch we have seen in Philadelphia sports history. He came up as big as you can. But Wentz he is not. That’s no disrespect to Foles. There are a handful of people on the planet who are in Wentz’s class.

Just a refresher course on what Wentz did in 13 games last season (his second in the NFL, by the way). He threw for 33 touchdowns, seven interceptions, 3,296 passing yards and had a 101.9 passer rating. The 33 TDs were the second-most in the NFL despite his missing the final three games. He also led his team to an 11-2 record before succumbing to that knee injury late into that Rams game that clinched the NFC East. He would have been the league MVP had he not gotten hurt.

There is a great luxury having Foles on this team. Wentz does not have to come back before he is able. If he’s not ready, you have the best backup in the league to start the season. But that’s the only scenario in which Foles plays Week 1. Simply put: Wentz is the better quarterback. And he has earned the right to start the opener if cleared. 

Some people read into Wentz's Instagram video of himself throwing earlier in the week as him somehow sending a message to Foles. I don’t buy it. I think Wentz’s message was to the fans and himself that I’ll be back, better than ever.

Wentz and Foles are both good teammates who put the team above themselves. Sure, Foles is a competitor and would likely prefer to start. But there won’t be any behind-the-scenes maneuvering to undercut Wentz. And Wentz is secure enough to be able to handle a Super Bowl MVP backing him up and all that goes along with that. Not to mention a coaching staff and organization that won’t allow outside noise to become a distraction.

Wentz over Foles. There’s no quarterback controversy.