Let’s talk about backup quarterbacks on a Friday.
Nate Sudfeld broke his wrist last night, so now we’re in the lovely position of looking for depth behind Carson Wentz on August 9th, almost a full month before the regular season even begins.
Of course, if you’re a believer in Cody Kessler and/or Clayton Thorson, then maybe this is a feckless exercise. Kessler is, after all, about as standard as they come when talking NFL backups, with 2017 and 2018 Nick Foles existing as a very unique outlier. He operated at a percentile that other backups typically do not come close to sniffing.
Some “options,” which I put in parentheses, since honestly there are very slim pickings at this point in the NFL calendar:
1. Colin Kaepernick
I’m not a fan of bringing in Kap, simply because of the ridiculous fucking media circus that would ensue. Sports radio would be absolutely unbearable. Twitter would be even worse than it already is. This website would be trash.
But to play devil’s advocate to my own opinion, it’s worth pointing out that Michael Vick also brought a media circus to Philadelphia, a huge off-field distraction that resulted in all sorts of crazy opinions and takes. His issues weren’t political in nature, nor was his jailing as widely talked about as Kap’s anthem protest, but it did eventually subside and he played well here.
Right, so the real question is whether Kap can even play. He’s been out of the league for a few years now, and during his final season with San Francisco (2016), he threw for 16 touchdowns and 4 interceptions over the course of 12 games while completing 59% of his passes. The Niners were terrible that year, and Kap’s QB record wound up at 1-10. Jeremy Kerley was his top receiver, with 667 yards and three touchdowns. Carlos Hyde was the leading rusher.
In 2015, he played nine games, going 2-6 and throwing six touchdowns and five interceptions. That’s when he suffered the shoulder injury and had surgery, cutting short his season. He’s 31 years old now, which isn’t too old for the league. There are much older guys still out there slinging it.
I just don’t think bringing in Kap is worth all of the peripheral bullshit that would come along with him, especially when you consider that this is a team with Super Bowl chances and a bona fide starting quarterback. It’s not like you can throw caution to the wind and just do whatever, take that risk since your team is “meh” to begin with. Bringing in Kaepernick could seriously throw off the entire ecosystem in that locker room and result in easily the most insane media and fan frenzy we’ve ever seen in this city. This is like the Tebow and Vick signings wrapped into one and multiplied by 50.
After the jump, some Kap highlights from his last season in the league:
2. Sam Bradford
Bring him home! Lmaooooo.
Bradford is a free agent, and look, maybe he’d be fine in a backup role with a player-friendly coach like Doug Pederson. I know he was shipped out unceremoniously a few years ago, but he’s played the backup role in each of his last two NFL years and might be fine doing the same thing again this season, assuming there’s no bad blood with the front office.
3. Geno Smith
Former WV guy, so I love him obviously, but not sure he’s got what it takes for this level. He’s currently battling with Paxton Lynch to be Russell Wilson’s backup in Seattle, and he finished 3-9 in the Seahawk’s preseason win last night. He’s also going to miss about 10 days for a medical procedure, the removal of a cyst on his knee.
4. Mark Sanchez
He literally just retired to join ABC/ESPN as a college football analyst. I think this ship has probably sailed, unless he desperately wants to come back to the league to play as a backup again.
5. Matt Cassel
37 years old but a ton of experience. He backed up Matt Stafford last season.
He’s played 108 career games:
6. Josh McCown
Holy shit, he’s 40 years old? Might have to cross him off the list.
7. Josh Johnson
Played a few games for the Redskins last year. Eagles pretty much had him running for his life the entire time. A career journeyman, Josh Johnson.
8. Brock Osweiler
28-year-old free agent. He did not have a great season in Miami, throwing six touchdowns and four interceptions over the course of seven games. 37 career touchdowns, 31 interceptions for Osweiler with a 78.0 QB rating.
9. Landry Jones
Cut by the Raiders in May, he was Big Ben’s backup for a few seasons out in Pittsburgh. 6’4″, 30 years old, former Oklahoma Sooner.
10. Brandon Weeden
Had an okay run with Cleveland back in the day, then became a journeyman backup type of guy. He’s in his mid-thirties.
Hmmm…. now that I go through the entire list, I’m not sure there’s anybody out there who is really any better than Cody Kessler, is there? Bradford maybe?
Since Nick Foles ain’t walking through that door, maybe it just makes more sense for the Eagles front office to stand pat and pray that Carson Wentz doesn’t get hurt.