I reached into my email bag and pulled put one of my favorites.
Greg from Downingtown, Pa. asked some great questions and I wanted to share my answers on the potpourri of topics.
Greg wrote: What was up with the McNabb’s restructuring and what do you think of the Eagles' chances in 2009?
LV’s response: The Birds have had a very good offseason, but I have to wonder how them talking out of both sides of their mouths in terms of business will affect team chemistry. They gave McNabb his restructuring, but no new deals for long-term signees like CB Sheldon Brown, DE Trent Cole, and DT Mike Patterson.
They didn’t change McNabb’s years (2 years to “win” a Super Bowl). But if he fails after that time. both sides can choose to walk. Remember the Birds will probably not “franchise” a 34 to 35-year-old QB in 2011.
I think impending problems with the salary cap (uncapped year in 2010 with the CBA expiring after the 2010 season) had a lot to do with them not extending Big 5. At least McNabb is happy now and has an extra $6 Million to be paid in Ben Roethlisberger and Matthew Stafford’s neighborhood (BTW: watchout for the money Giants QB Eli Manning will get—over $40 Million Guaranteed).
There are a few question marks with the Birds going into Lehigh (Westbrook’s ankle, team chemistry over McNabb’s signing, OT/OG Stacy Andrews' knee, can Sean Jones/Quintin Demps replace Dawkins, Kevin Curtis’ groin, and the rookies’ learning curve, especially RB LeSean McCoy).
But early indications are that the Eagles and Giants will be fighting it out for the top spot in the NFC East. At least 10-6, but let me see more in training camp.
Greg wrote: Where is Cardinals WR Anquan Boldin going to be playing in 2009?
LV’s response: The Cardinals were never going to trade Boldin during the 2009 NFL Draft unless they got a first, second, and possibly another first in another year (i.e. ridiculous offer).
Boldin will definitely be back now that he got rid of Rosenhaus, who the Cardinals didn’t like. Plus he is already under contract for two more years minimum.
Look for a possible restructuring/extension around mid-training camp if all goes well, but he better not be expecting Larry Fitzgerald type money.
LV’s response: Don’t believe any of the hype that Favre is not coming back. The soon to be 40-year -already has ties to Vikings OC Darrell Bevel and the Vikes have bent over backwards for him.
The only thing is which player the Vikings are getting at this point: the guy who looked like an MVP in 2007 for Green Bay or the NY Jets quarterback that threw an NFL-high 22 INTs and allowed his team to go 1-4 down the stretch in 2008.
I see Favre playing for the Vikings by training camp, but I am predicting a disaster in terms of team chemistry (see DE Ray Edwards comments) and the old graybeard wanting to mostly play for the Vikings for the wrong reasons (ego plus revenge against the Packers and GM Ted Thompson).
Look for the Vikings to be 7-9 in 2009 with the Bears winning the NFC North.
Greg wrote: Will Michael Vick be back in the NFL and if so, will he be a “Wildcat” only in his return?
LV’s response: Michael Vick will be back in the NFL as a quarterback. Of course, he will take any opportunity he gets to come back including playing Wildcat, slot receiver, returner, back-up quarterback, etc.
But if quarterbacks like 49ers Damon Huard, the Bears' Brett Basanez, the Chargers' Charlie Whitehurst, and other also-rans can have a job in the NFL, then I know there is a place for a three-time Pro Bowl player.
The key will be whether Roger Goodell reinstates and/or suspends Vick after he is released from his federal sentence on July 20th. I see Goodell handing down probably a four-game suspension with some caveats thrown like Vick can practice with the team during his suspension.
I believe Vick will definitely get his chance again. Enough with the protests; we just saw WR Donte Stallworth kill a man and he may be back in the NFL after only 30 days in jail and meeting with Goodell to talk about his current indefinite NFL suspension.
Look for the St Louis Rams (former ties to GM Bill Devaney during Vick's Falcons days), Oakland Raiders (Al Davis likes second chances), Dallas Cowboys (Jerry Jones needs Romo insurance), and Jacksonville Jaguars (need a better backup than Todd Bouman) to be in the mix for Vick.
Thanks for the great email, Greg
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Lloyd Vance is a Sr. NFL Writer for Taking It to the House and an award-winning member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA)Posted in 2009 NFL Season, Donovan McNabb, Lloyd's Leftovers Email Bag, NFL Fan Questions, Philadelphia Eagles Tagged: 2009 NFL Season, Donovan McNabb, Football, Lloyd's Leftovers Email Bag, NFL, NFL Fan Questions, Philadelphia Eagles, Sports