Jul 282011
New Eagles CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie

Welcome to Philly, DRC

Kevin Kolb’s tenure as an Eagles quarterback is finally over.  This afternoon the Eagles announced the news we all expected — Kolb has been traded to the Arizona Cardinals for former first-round cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a 2012 second-round pick.

Kolb, 27 next month, only made seven starts with the Eagles but in limited time showed flashes of real talent.  And those flashes have scored him a 5-year deal worth $63 million with $21 million guaranteed.  Not too bad for a guy who has thrown 319 career passes.

The former Houston Cougar may not be the most athletic guy or have the strongest arm but he’s smart, hard working, and coolheaded (when Clay Matthews isn’t bouncing it off the turf).  Kolb likely will never be the next Aaron Rodgers but he’s plenty good enough to excel.  He definitely has enough skills and ability to succeed in Arizona, and it won’t hurt having a reciever like Larry Fitzgerald to throw to, though Kolb better hope the Cardinals keep working on improving their offensive line or things could get a bit ugly.

So good luck Kevin, it was fun while it lasted.  With everyone utterly sick and tired of the same old Donovan McNabb clown show it was fun to look forward to the future for a bit. 

This move has been pretty much a given ever since Andy Reid fell in love with the dazzle of Mike Vick’s arms and legs, psychopath personality be damned.  Regardless of where you stand on Vick, it’s a good haul for Kolb.  Rodgers-Cromartie was a first-round pick in 2008 and he has demonstrated ridiculously elite speed as a starting corner.  He has amassed 13 interceptions over the past three seasons, good for 10th most in the NFL over that span.  After a very solid rookie season capped off by a Super Bowl appearance, DRC made the Pro Bowl in 2009, only to regress a bit last season.  The Cardinals defense as a whole really struggled, ranking 30th in the NFL in points allowed and 29th in yards allowed.  Not good. 

But that doesn’t mean DRC can’t play.  He’s still only 25 so his prime is just beginning.  He will need to soak up some coaching and prove wrong some of the negative whispers regarding his work ethic but he’ll have every chance to succeed in Philly.  Plus, it won’t hurt lining up at right cornerback across from Pro Bowl playmaker Asante Samuel.  The two will form a damn good tandem on a defense in transition.  And with the recent signing of Jason Babin shoring up the defensive end position, the two most important areas of a defense have just been seriously upgraded.

Now, if they could only get their heads out of their collective asses regarding the mess at linebacker, the Eagles are looking at a potentially vastly improved defense.

Finance-wise, which with the Eagles is always a major area of focus, the DRC contract situation won’t be an issue right away as he’s still playing out his first-round rookie contract.  He is signed through next season, earning $950,000 this year and $1,128,750 the next.  His cap hit is manageable as well, at $2.11 million this year and $2.28875 million next year.

Now, they just need to find a solid veteran backup as it’s unlikely Vick makes it through the season, either because of injury or due to his complete inability to read a defense and/or pick up a blitz look, and Mike Kafka just isn’t ready.

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