Until the NFL Draft comes and goes, there will be smoke surrounding the possibility of the Eagles making a drastic move to select Texas A&M QB Johnny Manziel with their first round pick. The fit with Chip Kelly‘s offense appears too natural and the former Heisman trophy winner will likely have an immediate impact on whatever team he does end up on. The MMQB editor Peter King, whose weekly column runs on SportsIllustrated.com every Monday, addressed the most recent resurfacing of this rumor in a peculiar manner.
There’s a rumor (apparently faulty) making the rounds about the Eagles moving up to try to get Johnny Manziel. I wouldn’t pass it along if the person who told me wasn’t smart and, to this point, reliable. But I just can’t see it, and I have someone who would know better than the rumor source telling me it absolutely won’t happen. Which seems smart to me, seeing that Nick Foles’ 27 touchdowns and two interceptions and 119.2 passer rating would be pretty damned foolish to throw out the window for Manziel. I just put it out there as an example of the kind of stuff that makes the rounds when so much of what happens at this time of year is designed to be a misdirection play. As Bills GM Doug Whaley said Friday, speaking to western New York reporters: “It’s finally one time where we can use you guys [reporters] to our advantage. There are things that you put out there to see if someone bites, and there are some things you put out there that are true. You have people read between the lines and you don’t want to show your hand. I’m sure everyone is doing the same thing.’’
So King’s article trends more towards the realistic thought process that, despite tantalizing possibilities, the Eagles have no interest in bringing in Manziel. Instead, they are far better served continuing to see what they have with starter Nick Foles at a cheap price tag and bringing in more talent around him and on defense to try to take advantage of their financial flexibility. Still, as I mentioned at the top of the article, this is a rumor that will not die until Johnny Football is standing next to Roger Goodell at the draft holding up another team’s jersey.