By Harry Allison
Forget agent Tom Condon’s version, since he has an ax to grind as Sam Bradford’s rep.
If you want to know why the Eagles-Broncos’ talks fell apart, here is what Sal Paolantonio of ESPN says.
“When the trade [for the No. 2 pick in the April 28 draft] was made, Doug Pedeson, Howie Roseman, and Jeffrey Lurie (above) had a meeting with Sam Bradford,” Paolantonio said on 97.5 the Fanatic yesterday.
“This is way before Sam had any sort of conversation with Tom Condon. In that meeting, he did not like the idea that the Eagles had traded up to No. 2 and expressed his displeasure, rather emphatically. He walked out of the meeting and told them he was leaving and he wanted to be traded and was leaving to go home to Oklahoma.
“He left the campus at NovaCare rather abruptly, went back to Oklahoma and perhaps on the phone in the car on the way to the airport, he called Tom Condon and told him what he was going to do and Condon was sort of stuck trying to figure out what to do with Sam Bradford.
“He wanted to force his way out,” Paolantonio said of Bradford. “They thought they had a plan. The plan was to get him traded to the Denver Broncos. But, the Eagles weren’t playing. They weren’t going along with the plan.
“Then, John Elway — at the insistence of Tom Condon — calls Howie Roseman and says ‘what do you think?’ And Elway calls Roseman who says ‘I’m not of a mind to trade this guy and if I am, it’s going to cost a lot. Probably two No. 2 picks.’ Elway hangs up the phone and says ‘okay, we’re moving on, because he is not worth and I need to rebuild my team from a lot of players leaving. I just won the Super Bowl. I’m in the Hall of Fame, I don’t know about you, but I know what I’m doing.’
“Now, during the draft Tom Condon’s left holding the bag and figure out what he’s going to do with Bradford. The Jets weren’t interested. I know Todd Bowles wanted no part of Sam Bradford. The Bills were going in a totally different route. That quickly dried up.”
Even after a deal failed to materialize during the draft, Paolantonio says that Condon and Bradford continued to seek a trade partner before ultimately deciding to settle on returning to One NovaCare Way.
“On Sunday night after the draft I was speaking to Condon on the phone,” Paolantonio explained. “He said he was going to call Bradford. Then they go dark. For a week nothing happens. No phone calls returned. No texts returned to the organization from Sam Bradford.
“They continued to make another round of calls around the league. Nothing goes on. No possible trade options. They waived the white flag. On Sunday night before Bradford comes to NovaCare, Condon called him and asked what he was doing and Bradford said, I’m going in. So, it was evident that Sam Bradford was driving this situation. Not his agent.”