Philadelphia Eagles: Howie Roseman, please trade Mychal Kendricks

(Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
(Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /

With the 2018 NFL draft upon us, the Philadelphia Eagles should do the right thing and trade weakside linebacker Mychal Kendricks.

Let me just preface this by saying that I’m a big Mychal Kendricks fan, so much so that I own a Kendricks jersey t-shirt, and because of that admiration, I really hope the Philadelphia Eagles do the right thing on draft day and ship him out of town.

Now don’t get me wrong, Kendricks is a good, if not great player, as he stepped up in a huge way last season and became essential in the Eagles march towards their first Super Bowl victory in franchise history, but now, with Jordan Hicks expected to be back in time for the start of the 2018 regular season is it really fair to send him back to a part-time player?

At this point, you kind of have to feel bad for the guy.

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After being drafted in the second round of the 2012 NFL draft to serve as a sideline-to-sideline linebacker in then-defensive coordinator Juan Castillo‘s wide-nine defense, Kendricks was forced to learn an entirely and move inside in Billy Davis‘ 3-4 base defense.

But boy did Kendrick shine on the inside.

Paired up with veteran starward DeMeco Ryans, Kendricks became a bona fide enforcer of the interior, routinely demolishing running backs at the line of scrimmage, and striking fear in the hearts of quarterbacks around the league with his speed up the middle and for this very reason he was rewarded with a new four-year, $29 million contract to continue to do so for a long time in South Philly.

But alas, it was not meant to be.

Following the ousting of Chip Kelly as the Eagles head coach and de facto GM, Howie Roseman returned to power and quickly and installed Doug Pederson as the next head coach for the Philadelphia Eagles and with him came Jim Schwartz and the return of the wide-nine defense to Philadelphia.

Now many assumed that this change would again free up Kendricks to freelance more as an outside linebacker, but his style of play fit into Schwartz’s scheme like a square peg in a round hole, has Schwartz almost never asks his linebackers to blitz, instead consistently dropping them into zone coverage for the vast majority the game.

This, when coupled with the addition of ex-Buffalo Bill Nigel Bradham to the Eagles defense, made Kendricks a starter in name only as he would routinely spend as much as 70 percent of a game sitting on the bench when the defense shifted to sub packages. Though he still made his fair share of plays, it was incredibly obvious that Kendricks envisioned a larger role for himself on defense, and ultimately requested a trade before the 2017 NFL season.

And if it wasn’t for Reuben Foster, his wish may have been granted.

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According to Bleacher Report, the Eagles had been in talks to ship Kendricks back to the West Coast, but when Foster fell to the San Francisco 49ers at the end of the first round of the 2017 NFL draft, the team no longer felt the need to send a second round pick to Philly for a similar player.

But after showing the football world what he could do when pressed into action, there should be plenty of teams interested in acquiring the sixth-year player for a Day 2 draft pick.

Why not take the deal?

Everyone who’s familiar with the Eagles knows that Roseman loves his draft picks, and with only six in this year’s draft, moving Kendricks for a premium pick would give the team some extra optionality and allow them to replenish their already loaded roster with cheap ascending talent to offset some of the bigger cap hits on the books for the foreseeable future.

Additionally, it would give Kendricks a chance to join a team where he could be the guy, as opposed to one of the guys. In the right scheme, Kendricks could become an absolute star, as he still remains one of the most athletically gifted linebackers in the entire league, but going into his third year in Schwartz’s scheme, it’s abundantly clear that that won’t happen in Philly.

Next: Mocking the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft

So please Howie, if you are reading this let the Angry Bird fly free. After being a good soldier the last two seasons, he deserves a chance to shine.