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Rodgers-Cromartie for Kevin Kolb?

7/18/2011

So I'm sure you guys saw this when it went up Monday night, and I thought it was worthy of its own post (i.e., bigger than a "breakfast link") because it touches on one of the league's hottest post-lockout storylines and because Mike Sando says this guy Jurecki is pretty plugged in out there in Arizona. I refer, of course, to the report that the Cardinals are willing (planning?) to trade cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie to the Eagles in the long-anticipated Kevin Kolb deal.

KolbKolbGotta be honest, I've heard very different things on this from a wide variety of people and don't know what to think. A theory took root at the draft, when the Cardinals picked cornerback Patrick Peterson. The theory was that, since the Cardinals didn't appear to need a cornerback (and the Eagles really, really do), perhaps they picked Peterson so they could deal Rodgers-Cromartie for Kolb. Some even thought they might have made the pick intending to flip Peterson, though I find that much more farfetched. Sal Paolantonio said a few weeks back that he thought the Eagles were going to be able to get actual players, rather than just picks, for Kolb. And now reports circulate that they might be able to get Rodgers-Cromartie in the deal.

But I've also heard that Rodgers-Cromartie and Peterson are both in Arizona's 2011 plans, and that they'd prefer to deal picks (even if that meant a first-rounder in 2012) in the Kolb deal. So I'm not sure what to believe. I'm not shooting down Jurecki's report, because I don't do shoot-downs and I have had people tell me Philadelphia might get a player and not a pick for Kolb. But I am confused at having heard two such opposite opinions on how this is going to go down.

If it is Rodgers-Cromartie, I'll say I think the Eagles will have done very well, trading a guy they view as a backup quarterback for a 25-year-old starter who's got a Pro Bowl on his résumé and fills their biggest current need. I know there's been a lot of talk about whether Rodgers-Cromartie (or even Nnamdi Asomugha) is the right type of cornerback for the defense the Eagles are planning to run, since he's more of a cover guy than a tackler. But a lot of that is based on speculation about what kind of defense the Eagles plan to run. If you end up with two very good cover corners, it makes some sense to build your defense around that to a certain extent, rather than try to shoehorn bad fits into a preset scheme. I think the Eagles' coaches are smart enough to know this, and that any panic Eagles fans have about Rodgers-Cromartie being a poor fit should (if it happens) take a back seat to happiness at having flipped your backup quarterback for a talented young starting corner and being able to move on to other free-agent needs.

I just don't have any idea at all how to handicap the chances of it actually happening. Maybe we'll know by this time next week, right?