EAGLES

Two AFC teams reportedly eyeing Dillard trade

EAGLES

The NFL trade deadline is less than a week away, and though the Eagles have already shipped out two veteran pieces of their offense in Joe Flacco and Zach Ertz, something tells me Howie Roseman isn't done wheeling and dealing yet.

ESPN insider Jeremy Fowler seems to feel that way, too. In a column Wednesday discussing the trade buzz he's heard from league sources, Fowler reported that the Eagles have a player of interest who might be moved before Nov. 2.

Here's what Fowler had to offer:

"It wouldn’t be a shock to see an AFC North team call Philly about offensive tackle Andre Dillard, who is considered to be on the block. Browns and Ravens have had depth issues there."

Hmm. This feels like a very specific trade rumor. Normally when an insider is naming a particular division, and then particular teams, it's not just off-the-cuff speculation. It's reminiscent of how specific FOX Sports insider Jay Glazer was about a Zach Ertz trade less than 24 hours before the tight end was dealt. I would imagine both the Browns and Ravens have legitimate interest in Dillard.

NFL.com's Ian Rapoport reported over the weekend that teams around the league believe a "quality second-day pick" would be enough to wriggle Dillard away from the Eagles. Rapoport also reported there are scenarios where Dillard is in the Eagles' long-term plans.

 

Look, I've been on the "trade Dillard for ketchup" train since back in March, when I floated the idea of him being shipped out to Kansas City. For a long time I believed Howie Roseman should just clean his hands of another botched first-round pick and recoup something, anything, for his troubles. Mailata is clearly the left tackle of the future.

But Dillard has shown his value this year; having a backup left tackle who can play at the level he's played this year is no small feat. Offensive linemen get banged up, and left tackle is the most important position on the O-line. 

Dillard is clearly viewed favorably around the league if teams are considering trades, but I can't imagine there are teams clamoring to make him a key piece of their future. Dillard is still under contract next year, and if the Eagles can keep him around on a team-friendly deal as their primary backup left tackle past 2022, I think I would do it. 

That said, if Roseman can get legitimately good value for Dillard - a third-round pick would move the needle for me - then he should probably pull the trigger. As I've discussed ad nauseam in the past few months, this offseason is so hugely important for the Eagles. Having as much fungible draft capital as possible to go out and get the guys the want - rookies, young guys on bad teams, veterans, whomever - is crucial.

Either way, I'll be cool with the move. It's just nice for the Eagles that Dillard has played himself back into the conversation of "player who is worth something" after such a brutal start to his career - and it's good for him, too.

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