For close to, I would say a decade, from 1999-2009, the Eagles were on of the top 4 most stable franchises in the NFL.
Much of this was attributed to a stable QB, a stable coach and a stable front office. But since 2009, and really since McNabb’s skills deteriorated, the Eagles have been anything but stable, and at times have looked chaotic. Reid tried to hold everything together but it just wasn’t possible anymore. They went out and tried the “dream team,” they tried to make Mike Vick their starter for the future, they fired Andy and brought in the most polarizing coach in the NFL in Chip Kelly and all of a sudden the Eagles weren’t the Eagles we had grown accustomed too. There was front office drama, they shipped off their talented pieces, they traded for a busted #1 overall pick– they were out of control under Chip Kelly and anything but stable.
Now after one season in the resurrection of Howie Roseman era, the Eagles on the path back to stability. The first step in recovery is admitting you have a problem and Jeff Lurie admitted he had a problem with Chip and did something about it– firing his coach with a week left in the 2015 season. Since then, Howie has been brought back, they have what looks like a franchise QB and, even though it was costly, they locked up their core for the near future. They have brought the locker room back and are on the path to stability with Wentz and Co.
Earlier this week, The Ringer’s Danny Kelly ranked the most stable franchises in the NFL. He stated that given the parity that the league is ultimately going for, stability is a hard thing to accomplish in the NFL, and in fact the NFL doesn’t really want stability. You can read the full article here:
The Eagles checked in on this list right smack-dab in the middle at #15. Here’s what Kelly said about the Eagles.
The trio of head coach Doug Pedersen, defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz, and offensive coordinator Frank Reich returns for a second season in Philly. Same goes for all of the Eagles’ offensive personnel, as they have zero free agents on that side of the ball. Defensively, Philadelphia’s staff will have to decide what to do with several free agents, including defensive tackle Bennie Logan and cornerback Nolan Carroll, but with a full offseason of preparation for quarterback Carson Wentz, the Eagles should improve on an up-and-down 2016 campaign.
To me, ranking them at 15 is fair and shows that the Eagles are on the path back to stability.
The best way to gain stability in the NFL is to have a franchise QB and a good head coach to take care of everything else. The reason why I don’t think you can say the Eagles are 100% stable yet is because of Doug Pederson. I’m willing to give Doug another year, but if he makes the same mistakes he did this past year, I could see Jeff and Howie not wanting to waste Wentz with Pederson and get someone else in here.
The Eagles are in a bit of a holding pattern right now, but they could certainly take off next year, with a leap from Wentz, and vaunt up this ranking. I also think that Joe Douglas being here is going to create even more stability. I really don’t believe that the Eagles want to let Douglas leave anytime soon and me thinks that he is the reason they haven’t filled that GM position just yet. He just has to prove himself with this upcoming draft/free agency and I think they hand that GM job to him. They’ve put a lot on Douglas’ plate and I really think Jeff and Howie plan on him being around for a long, long time.
After years of chaos, I think the Eagles are close to being back to ultimate stability. Wentz helps, but it’s a change in organizational philosophy as well. They’ve invested heavily in the draft, with bringing in Douglas, and I believe that Howie and Co. have learned the downsides of building through free agency. Howie is tired of band-aids and so are we.
I firmly believe that the Eagles are back on the path to stability.