Jeff Lurie has 'real, total confidence' in Howie Roseman

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Jeff Lurie has 'real, total confidence' in Howie Roseman

Howie Roseman's resume in seven years as Eagles general manager includes no playoff wins. It lists just two postseason appearances in his first six years as GM. It features 56 players drafted (not including this year), only three of whom have made a Pro Bowl (Jason Kelce, Nick Foles, Fletcher Cox).

That's enough for Jeff Lurie, who gave Roseman a rousing vote of confidence Thursday in a rare meeting with the Philly media.

"I think Howie has done a tremendous job," Lurie said. "I have real, total confidence in Howie."

Roseman became general manager in 2010, was stripped of his power after the 2014 season as part of Chip Kelly's ill-fated power play, and then reinstalled as the team's primary architect immediately after the 2015 season.

The Eagles' last playoff win came in 2008, and their only postseason appearances since Roseman became the NFL's youngest general manager seven years ago came in 2010 and 2013.

The current eight-year gap without a playoff win is the franchise's longest since 1981 through 1991 and the three-year absence from the postseason is the Eagles' longest since 1997 through 1999 and equals the longest since 1982 through 1987.  

But Lurie heaped heavy praise on Roseman, especially for the series of moves that simultaneously jettisoned several of Kelly's non-performing acquisitions and also led to the Eagles drafting quarterback Carson Wentz with the second pick in last year's draft.

"The last couple years, [he's made] remarkable franchise-changing decisions," Lurie said. "As I've said before, it is not easy to not tank and be able to accomplish the goals you want to make in the NFL. It's so hard to get quarterbacks.

"The maneuvering, the use of assets the way we did, the identification of the one player that we had a lot of confidence in, Carson Wentz, at a time when other teams all needed quarterbacks, that's just one of many, many key things that Howie, the player personnel department, analytics, everybody has participated in.

"Ever since then, it's been one domino after another in terms of smart moves. Really happy with the additions this offseason, as [I was with] last offseason.

"The way he structured the Sam Bradford contract allowed us to retrieve a first-round draft choice and a fourth-round draft choice. [That's] very hard to accomplish in this league. We also didn't have a lot of assets to be able to trade up in terms of getting Carson for that No. 2 pick. We were not a 2-14 team. We were going to be drafting 13. How do you get there? How do you get up there? We could get to eight. It was a double move. Very rare.

"When you look back on the last couple years, very impressive performance. I couldn't have more confidence in Howie."

Roseman has indeed been active signing players, acquiring players, trading players, recouping draft picks and overhauling the roster. Yet the Eagles are one of only 12 teams in the NFL that hasn't won a playoff game over the last eight seasons.

When will all the moves translate into something tangible? Lurie wouldn't say how much time Roseman has to turn all this potential success into actual success.

Roseman has certainly been busy. The Eagles' 53-man roster that goes into Washington this weekend includes 18 players who weren't on the team last year and only 21 who were here as recently as 2015.

But this is also the eighth-oldest team in the NFL and most of their top established players — Cox, Darren Sproles, Jason Peters, Brandon Graham, Malcolm Jenkins, Alshon Jeffery — are all in their sixth year or later.

Lurie spoke of Roseman's ability to build both a team that can win in the short-term while still building for the long-term.

"That's also not easy to do in the NFL," he said. "What we've been able to do I think this offseason is really improve with a lot of good, young players [and] position ourselves to be able to have the flexibility to re-sign every good player we have, and at the same time adding some one-year players that are very good players, like Alshon Jeffery and Timmy Jernigan, where you have the ability to potentially have their rights, extend them, see how they are, and go forward.

"We've taken the philosophy that we can try to find a way to get a franchise quarterback, and then try to really maximize both the short-term and the long-term as best you can. Consistently, every decision for the short-term has been where we don't sacrifice any midterm or long-term flexibility. That was the absolute standard that we believed in and do believe in."

Eagles reward Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles with reworked contract

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Eagles reward Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles with reworked contract

The Eagles gave Nick Foles a little raise on Friday, reworking the Super Bowl MVP’s contract, a league source confirmed. 

Basically, the Eagles are rewarding Foles after he helped the franchise win its first-ever Super Bowl a few months ago. 

Foles, 29, is still entering the final year of his contract with the Eagles, but the new deal also includes a mutual option for the 2019 season, a source confirmed to NBC Sports Philadelphia. The mutual option will still allow Foles the possibility to test the free agent market next season, but could leave the door open to a possible return beyond this upcoming season. 

Mike Garafolo and Ian Rapoport from NFL Network first reported the revised contract, which includes a $2 million signing bonus and “several millions in incentives if he’s the starter and hits various benchmarks,” according to Rapoport. 

That part makes a ton of sense. If for some reason Carson Wentz isn’t ready to play in 2018 or if he goes down again, Foles will have a chance to earn what might be closer to starter money. 

Foles was set to earn a base salary of $4 million in 2018, with a salary cap hit of $7.6 million on the contract before Friday’s renegotiation. 

Wentz and Foles grew very close last season — third-string QB Nate Sudfeld too — and have both been very selfless in a situation that would be awkward for many others in the league. But both have been incredibly selfless throughout the entire process. Just this week, Wentz admitted he had to fight jealousy but was truly happy for his teammate and friend, who became the Super Bowl hero (see story)

Earlier on Friday, Foles tweeted out this photo with his wife and daughter from the NovaCare Complex. That’s a $2 million smile. 

Eagles well-represented on list of top NFL sellers

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Eagles well-represented on list of top NFL sellers

It turns out winning the Super Bowl is pretty good for business. 

The NFLPA on Friday released its top 50 player sales list from March 1-Feb. 28 and the Eagles were the most represented team on the list, with five players ranking in the top 50. 

3. Carson Wentz 
17. Zach Ertz
22. Nick Foles
43. Alshon Jeffery
45. Jay Ajayi 

This list is a combined total of all officially licensed merchandise, not just jerseys. It shouldn’t be surprising that Wentz is near the top of this list, behind just Tom Brady (1) and Dak Prescott (2). Even though he was injured late in the year, he was having an MVP season before going down and is obviously the Eagles’ quarterback of the future. 

But Foles making the list at 22? That’s pretty impressive. Remember, for most of the 2017 season, Foles was just a backup on a two-year deal. He had to make a heckuva comeback once he took over for an injured Wentz and led the Eagles to their first Super Bowl championship. Foles returned to the top 50 list after two years off of it. 

Weirdly, Foles sold more drinkware product from Wincraft than any other player — 10 times more than any other player!

And there are likely a lot of Eagles fans walking around the city with players on their legs. Five of the top 10 sellers of Strideline socks were Eagles: Foles, Wentz, Chris Long, Ajayi and Jeffery. 

Only Brady and Odell Beckham Jr. sold more in Fathead decals than Wentz. 

Here’s the top 10: 

1. Brady
2. Prescott
3. Wentz
4. Ezekiel Elliott
5. Antonio Brown
6. Aaron Rodgers
7. Beckham Jr. 
8. Russell Wilson
9. Rob Gronkowski
10. Derek Carr