By Tom Brennan
So the Eagles have a new coach.
But an old quarterback controversy.
Carson Wentz with his massive contract and diminishing skills vs. Jalen Hurts with his rookie deal and unknown NFL skills.
For weeks, the deeply flawed crown jewels of the 2016 NFL draft’s quarterbacks class presented the league with a pressing question about resolving a massive error.
As the Eagles pondered the future of Wentz and the Los Angeles Rams considered swapping out Jared Goff, onlooking NFL teams were mulling an issue that overarched both franchises.
Sure, you might find a trade partner willing to reboot the careers of Goff or Wentz, but what could convince a trade partner to eat the considerable amount of salary owed to each?
Well, the Rams just laid the blueprint.
And for the second time since 2017, the league has what amounts to an NBA-style trade sweetener in exchange for eating a player’s massive salary.
That’s one of the fundamental underpinnings of Saturday night’s stunning trade agreement that will reportedly send Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford to the Rams in exchange for Goff and three valuable draft picks — including first-round picks in the 2022 and 2023 drafts and a third-round pick in this year’s draft.
Just in terms of the value, the trio of picks represents considerably more than most believed the soon-to-be 33-year old Stafford would net in a deal.
The kicker was the Rams’ inclusion of Goff, including $43 million in guaranteed money that will have to be paid to him in the 2021 and 2022 seasons. It was that salary guarantee that put the Rams into a position of sweetening their deal for Stafford.