Eagles

NFL free agency 2019: A comprehensive look at Eagles' quarterbacks

NFL free agency 2019: A comprehensive look at Eagles' quarterbacks

Reuben Frank, Dave Zangaro and Andrew Kulp bring back the 2019 edition of Stay or Go, trying to figure out the future of the Eagles. 

We start off with the quarterback position: 

Carson Wentz 

Roob: Not only will he be back, but there’s also no doubt in my mind he’ll be back at an elite level. If Wentz can do what he did this year — 70 percent, 21 TDs, 7 INTs — with a knee that wasn’t at full strength and a broken back, there’s no reason to expect anything less than his 2017 Pro Bowl form with a healthy offseason. I expect greatness from Wentz in 2019.

Verdict: Stays

Dave: I know some fans wanted the Eagles to change paths, but Wentz is their guy. They identified him, moved up to get him and then started him right away. They have never wavered. I still think he’s going to be an MVP in this league. Even if they don’t pay him this offseason, they’re going to at some point. 

Verdict: Stays 

Kulp: Doug Pederson already came right out and said, “Carson is the quarterback going forward,” and for the record, it’s the right call. If a down year is a 69.6 completion percentage, 7.7 yards per pass attempt and 21 touchdowns, can’t wait to see what Wentz has in store for 2019 when he’s actually healthy.

Verdict: Stays

Nick Foles

Roob: I know there’s a growing school of thought that says Foles will decide to stay in Philly and back up Wentz instead of going to a bad team where he has no chance of winning. But I just don’t see it. He’s in his prime. He’s a competitor. He wants to play. He says all the time, “I want to lead a team.” He’ll get that opportunity somewhere in 2019.

Verdict: Goes

Dave: If it was anyone else, I’d say there was a zero percent chance he’d be back. I’ll admit with Foles it’s more than that. But I still can’t see how he comes back next season. It seems like he knows it too. Either he leaves as a free agent or he gets traded to a place he’s comfortable going after playing this chess match with the Eagles. See ya, Nick. 

Verdict: Goes

Kulp: Don’t envision a scenario where Foles returns as a backup. He’ll get the opportunity to start someplace — either Jacksonville or Washington would be my guess — plus the Eagles are up against the salary cap. I wasn’t exactly blown away by his performance this season anyway, so no quarterback controversy here. As far as what happens, Foles opts out and becomes an unrestricted free agent.

Verdict: Goes

Nate Sudfeld

Roob: I think we got a pretty good idea how much the Eagles like Sudfeld when they went into the postseason in both 2017 and 2018 with Sudfeld as the No. 2. If they didn’t trust him, he wouldn’t have been a backup quarterback in a Super Bowl. The Eagles have too many other needs to invest in a costly veteran backup QB.

Verdict: Stays

Dave: He’s a restricted free agent, so the Eagles can make sure he doesn’t go anywhere. They’ll either use an original-round tender or a second-round tender if they think there’s a market for him. Either way, the Eagles like Sudfeld and he’s not going anywhere.

Verdict: Stays

Kulp: The Eagles have been grooming Sudfeld for the backup role the past two seasons. No doubt there will be “competition” in the form of an inexpensive veteran and/or rookie(s), but Sudfeld should be carried by his familiarity with the offense. A restricted free agent with 25 career pass attempts, I don’t anticipate him receiving an offer sheet from another team, either.

Verdict: Stays 

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One company offering Super Bowl ticket loans at 30% interest (P.S. -- dont do this)

One company offering Super Bowl ticket loans at 30% interest (P.S. -- dont do this)

It’s “easier than ever” to attend the Super Bowl, according to a Stub Hub press release.

It may also be easier than ever to go into debt doing it.

StubHub this week announced a program that allows fans to finance ticket purchases — including Super Bowl tickets — and pay for them over a period of 3, 6 or 12 months.

All at the bargain-basement price of up to 30 percent interest.

Stub Hub, in conjunction with financial firm Affirm, introduced a program this week that allows consumers to use Stub Hub to purchase tickets and during the check-out process elect to finance the purchase through Affirm. 

Although ticket buyers can use Affirm for most Stub Hub purchase, the company is rolling out this program as a way to encourage fans who can’t afford Super Bowl tickets to buy them at potentially exorbitant interest rates.

According to financial web site The Balance, the average credit card interest rate as of December was 21.26 percent.

“Just in time for the Super Bowl, consumers can purchase event tickets now and pay over time,” reads a joint press release from Affirm and Stub Hub. 

The StubHub-Affirm joint press release makes it sound like paying 30 percent interest is a financially sound idea: “With U.S. credit card debt at an all-time high and many consumers looking to kick off the new year with better financial habits, they’re demanding more transparent financial products that align with their interests.”

According to a CBS News story that examined the Stub Hub program, two lower-level end-zone tickets selling on Stub Hub for $15,760 on a 12-month, 30-percent loan would cost the buyer an additional $2,676 in interest.

The story also said that unlike credit cards, there’s no financial benefit for consumers to pay this sort of loan off early. 

Ted Rossman of creditcards.com appeared on CBS MoneyWatch and warned consumers against using this sort of financial plan to pay for tickets makes no financial sense.

"It is a huge risk to make any type of discretionary purchase with something that carries a rate of 10 percent to 30 percent,” Rossman said on the show, according to the CBS News story. "It's risky to buy it now and think you are going to pay it later."

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After egregious All-Pro snub, Brandon Brooks named top OL in NFL

After egregious All-Pro snub, Brandon Brooks named top OL in NFL

Earlier this month, Jason Kelce called Brandon Brooks “the best offensive lineman in the NFL.” 

Turns out, ProFootballFocus agrees.

On Thursday, PFF named Brooks the winner of its annual Bruce Matthews Award, given to the best offensive lineman in the NFL. The Eagles were also named the best overall offensive line in the league. 

It’s an honor Brooks deserves after he was egregiously snubbed by voters for the Associated Press All-Pro team earlier this month. It was an absolute joke that Brooks wasn’t even named to the second team. No disrespect to Zack Martin or Marshal Yanda but Brooks was better than both of them this year. 

There’s no doubt that Brooks is the best right guard in the NFL. PFF thinks he’s the best overall OL in the league too. 

Here’s what they said about him:

“Brooks has been a perennially underrated player throughout his NFL career, whether it was playing in Houston or Philadelphia. Aside from a rookie season in which he played just 173 snaps, he has earned overall PFF grades of at least 74.0 every season since. Four of those six seasons before this one saw him top 80.0 overall, but this year he took his game to another level, earning an overall grade of 92.9. For years we have been making the case that he deserves Pro Bowl, and then All-Pro, recognition, and now he deserves to be acknowledged as the best offensive linemen in the game.”

While opinions are split on ProFootballFocus, their evaluations for offensive linemen are incredibly valuable. PFF has been able to give stats to a position that was previously stat-less. No, they don’t necessarily know assignments or the exact designs of plays, but they grade each and every play and that detailed analysis can take some of the human element out of giving these awards. 

When the All-Pro voters made their selections, they picked two guys at right guard in Martin and Yanda who have a longer history of playing at an elite level. PFF doesn’t care about that. They did their game-by-game, play-by-play evaluations and came to the conclusion that no other offensive lineman was better than Brooks this season. 

According to PFF, Brooks gave up just one sack and and 19 pressures on 647 pass snaps. That’s pretty impressive. But it’s even more impressive that Brooks was that dominant eight months after suffering a torn Achilles. 

For the start of next season, Brooks will be coming off a shoulder surgery, but there’s no doubt he should be able to return to his dominant form in 2020. 

The Eagles know what they have in Brooks. They signed the three-time Pro Bowler to a four-year extension during the season that made him the highest-paid guard in the NFL and will keep him in Philadelphia through 2024.

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