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Philadelphia Eagles: Trent Edwards Next in Line for Andy Reid Treatment?

Not a starter, perhaps Edwards could be a steady backup.
Not a starter, perhaps Edwards could be a steady backup.Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Ron PasceriCorrespondent IIJanuary 19, 2012

As many may have heard, the Philadelphia Eagles brought in former Bills quarterback Trent Edwards for a workout.

There's nothing imminent as far as signing him, and it doesn't seem all that exciting.  Edwards is an also-ran quarterback who has never distinguished himself in four seasons and wasn't even playing football last year.

At most, Edwards would the the backup to Michael Vick.  It may sound like an afterthought, but the Eagles' backup quarterbacks played a pivotal role in 2011.  Vince Young started three games, and Mike Kafka played two additional quarters in relief.

Young lost two of his three starts, and the Eagles actually led in the fourth quarter of both games Kafka played.  They were shut out in both quarters and lost both games.

Young and Kafka played a combined 14 quarters, just about 22 percent of the season.  The Eagles scored just 51 points in that time, which would equate to just 14.6 points per game.

In games that Vick both started and finished, the Eagles were 7-4.  In games where both didn't happen, they were just 1-4.  Assuming Vick misses a similar amount of time in 2012, they need significantly better play from his backup.

Trent Edwards may not seem like the man for the job.  He was 14-18 as a starter in Buffalo, and he threw 26 touchdown passes against 30 interceptions.  But, in games the Bills played without Edwards, they were just 10-22.

He has actually completed over 60 percent of his career pass attempts and didn't have a bad year in 2008.  He completed 65.5 percent of his passes and threw 11 touchdowns against 10 interceptions.  He had a 7-7 record.


While his numbers may seem pedestrian at best, is it possible that Andy Reid could breathe new life into his career?

Edwards would truly be nothing more than a backup, so it isn't like he would need to work miracles.  All he would need to do is get Edwards to get the ball out on time and not turn it over.  Reid should be able to squeeze more out of him than any coach has to this point.

As a comparison, take another successful backup groomed by Reid—A.J. Feeley.  Feeley has had plenty of chances to start in his career, but the only place he has been successful is in Philadelphia.

For the Eagles, Feeley had a 58.6 percent career completion percentage, he threw 16 touchdown passes and 14 interceptions.  He also averaged 6.1 yards per attempt.  In seven career starts, he had a 4-3 record.

Now outside of Philadelphia, he's completed just 53.9 percent of his passes with 12 touchdowns and 17 interceptions.  He's averaged just 5.4 yards per attempt and holds a 4-7 record as a starter.

Those numbers don't tell the entire story, as he was a younger player in Philadelphia on a better team, but he played better in his return to the Eagles than he did in Miami.  Feeley was a competent quarterback in Philadelphia but really nowhere else.

If Reid could coax that same type of heightened play out of Edwards, he could be the backup they need.  He was highly regarded coming out of Stanford and had a significantly higher pedigree than Feeley.

He was drafted in the third round of the 2007 draft—the same year as Kevin Kolb.  He's 29 years old and stands 6'4", weighing in at 231 pounds.  He isn't speedy by any means, but he has some mobility and can throw on the run.

With his lack of elite athleticism, Andy Reid would probably even adjust the offense to help him, similar to what he did with Feeley and Jeff Garcia.  Also, with his 32 career starts, he has a significant advantage in experience over Mike Kafka.

Edwards will not garner headlines, and truthfully, may not even get signed, but the Eagles do need a huge upgrade behind Vick.  Not to push him or to cause a controversy, but simply to be able to step on the field and finish what Vick started, should the need arise.

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