Le’Veon Bell to the Eagles?
Hell yeah. Of course. Why not?
I have no clue how you’d swing the deal and fit him under the cap, but Jason La Canfora seems to have an idea.
The CBS Sports Insider recently appeared on Will Brinson’s “pick six” podcast, where the pair identified Green Bay, Miami, Tampa, and Washington as possible Pittsburgh trade partners. But La Canfora picked the Eagles as a “sleeper team” to acquire Bell’s services as they make a push for Super Bowl repeat.
“[This would be] the ultimate Howie Roseman move. Trade Nick Foles, get something back for him and then blammo, create cap space and money. Go to your owner and say ‘I’m going to turn Nick Foles into Le’Veon Bell, all you gotta do is pay him.’ Jay Ajayi is up at the end of the year anyway. They have no commitment to him. Sproles is banged up again. Do they really want to be going into games with Corey Clement and whatever else? That’s my sleeper team.”
Makes sense, assuming there’s still a market for Foles. San Francisco makes sense after the Jimmy Garoppolo injury, but even if they or someone else is interested and you got something like a 3rd rounder in return, you can’t just turn that into a Bell trade. You’d need to package something else into that, because I doubt a single draft pick is going to get the job done, even for a one-year rental.
More from the article:
“With Carson, there’s going to be a lot of three-step drops. Who better to go out there and save the day? They’re obviously trying to win right now. They’ve already made a financial commitment so that’s not an owner who is going to let $8 million scuttle the chance to get an All-Pro, every down running back.
“What’s imperative right now more than anything else in Philadelphia? Pass protection. Who’s a better pass protecting running back than Le’Veon Bell? Think about it.”
Actually, there aren’t a lot of three step drops. The Eagles use shotgun a hell of a lot more than under center sets. But it’s true that Bell is a good pass protector and one of the best runners in the game, so bringing him in alleviates pressure from the quarterback in more ways than one.
For context, Bell is due $14 million this year. Spotrac says Foles has a $13.6 million cap hit when you factor in his base salary, signing bonus, roster bonus, and miscellaneous incentive money.
The Eagles are about $5 million under the cap, so they could probably work something to get Bell in here this year, but it’s a multi-step deal. They can’t just trade for him without moving other pieces to make room. Also, they’re projected to be $20 million over next year’s cap with Carson Wentz requiring a long term contract extension sooner rather than later, so the situation moving forward is even tighter.
But Le’Veon Bell is worth thinking about. I wasn’t big on the Josh Gordon thing because I didn’t find him to be reliable, and while Bell has his issues with the Steelers right now, it’s not because he couldn’t put down the alcohol or weed. This was a contract thing, and I honestly don’t blame him for holding out since Antonio Brown and Ben Roethlisberger were rewarded with big contracts while he got the franchise tag instead.