Philadelphia Eagles: Nick Foles is not a franchise quarterback

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /

Though he may have a statue outside of Lincoln Financial Field, Nick Foles is not a franchise quarterback. But for the Philadelphia Eagles, that’s just fine.

The NFL is a what-have-you-done-for-me-lately type of league, where a string of great games can have fans quickly jumping to conclusions (FitzMagic, anyone?). And after leading an embattled Philadelphia Eagles squad out of the regular season, through the playoffs, and to their first Super Bowl championship in organization history, no one stock was more inflated then Nick Foles earlier this year.

As the reigning Super Bowl MVP, scores of think pieces arose over the last six months questioning whether or not Foles could lead his own team, how much he was worth in a trade, and if the Eagles may have an actual quarterback competition on their hands.

I even remember reading an article questioning if two first-round picks were even enough compensation to grab falls off the Eagles roster. Man, the offseason is crazy.

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But now, after an almost full slate of preseason games and a pair of regular season starts one thing is abundantly clear: Nick Foles is not a franchise quarterback.

Now don’t get me wrong, that’s not a knock against Foles, as there are never more than a dozen true franchise quarterbacks in the league at any given time, but it’s clear that what we saw last season was more in line with his flute 2013 performance, not an indicator that Foles had turned his career around at the ripe old age of 29.

Much like how the read-option took the league by storm under Foles-former head coach Chip Kelly, Doug Pederson gave his hybrid West Coast offense a radical facelift to try to capitalize on Nick’s strength, creating a run-pass option scheme the likes of which very few teams were quick to cover.

Transforming Foles into an almost NFL point guard, the offense took advantage of defensive indecisiveness and created wide-open looks the likes of which are typically reserved for college offenses, not the NFL.

However, much like the Wildcat a decade prior, teams caught up.

At this point, the run-pass option has become so ubiquitous that it’s not uncommon to see high school offenses running the play.

But if everyone can run it, everyone can defend it.

Over the first two weeks of the season, we’ve seen the play become far less effective, forcing Foles to take longer in the pocket to make decisions, and awkwardly run around behind the line of scrimmage looking for an open receiver. As the owner of a 5.14 40-yard dash coming out of college, it’s pretty safe to say Nick Foles shouldn’t be imitating Russell Wilson in the pocket.

Though the Eagles are currently 1-1 over Foles’ two starts, the team pounced on an opportunity to name Carson Wentz their Week 3 starter against the Indianapolis Colts.

I know it’s been a minute, but Carson Wentz is the textbook definition of a franchise quarterback and was a play away from being named 2017 NFL Most Valuable Player. But just because Wentz is otherworldly talent doesn’t mean Foles is bad, far from it actually.

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Though it might be hard to legitimately quantify, I think it’s safe to say Foles is one of the top-50 players at his position in the world at this moment, and will surely have a job in the NFL next year, but in what capacity? Outside of maybe taking over for an aging quarterback like Eli Manning or even his Super Bowl 52 opponent Tom Brady, it’s hard to imagine many teams wanting to reboot their roster with Foles under center as opposed to a 23-year-old first round pick.

Is that really how Foles wants to finish out his career? An absolute folk hero in the City of Brotherly Love, Foles has seen firsthand what it’s like to try to right the ship on a poorly-managed roster and almost saw his career come to an end after a tumultuous stint in St. Louis.

Wouldn’t you rather close out your career in a city that adores you even in a diminished role like Brent Celek, as opposed to bouncing around the league searching for any sliver of an opportunity to start? Based on the buzz surrounding Foles late summer book tour, it’s clear that St. Nick will never have to buy a beer in Philadelphia again.

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So is Nick Foles a potential franchise quarterback who can take over his own team and replicate his 2017, or even 2013 success full time? I would venture to say no, but he’s clearly a player of worthy of an NFL contract and could have a spot on my team for as long as he’d like.