WOULD SKINS REALLY TRADE MARIOTA’S RIGHTS TO NFC EAST EAGLES?

“Trading quarterbacks is rare but not unusual,” Joe Kuharich said after dealing Sonny Jurgensen (above) to the Redskins and ultimately into the Hall of Fame.

By Peter Gleason

There has been so much speculation about the Eagles’ intention to move up in April’s NFL draft so they can acquire Oregon QB Marcus Mariota that sometimes common sense does not come into play.

Speaking of which, former Eagles general manager Joe Kuharich once famously said:

“Trading a quarterback is rare but it’s not unusual.”

He said that after he sent Birds’ QB Sonny Jurgensen to the Redskins in 1964. Jurgensen went on to a great DC career and entrance into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

And, of course, Andy Reid sent Donovan McNabb to the Skins a few years ago, figuring that McNabb had nothing left.

He was right.

But would the Redskins really allow the Eagles to draft a quarterback who could come back to haunt them twice a season in NFC East competition?

And now SI’s Peter King has made news by predicting the Eagles could trade up to grab Marcus Mariota in the draft.

Remember this is Peter King, an experience NFL watcher with great sources. Not Jimmy Kempski, who has no sources and just blogs from his basement, linking to other stories.

Writing for MMQB.com, King projected that Philly could acquire the fifth-overall pick from Washington in exchange for their first- and second-round picks this year, plus first- and fourth-rounders in 2016:

Washington could be moving from five to 20 in the first round by doing this deal, with GM Scot McCloughan scoring points with his new boss for not giving away the store in a trade, but rather acquiring the store. This has so many poetic points to it. The Eagles gave Donovan McNabb to Washington a few Easters ago; now Washington would be giving a longer-term quarterback, theoretically, to Chip Kelly. The Eagles coach would be reunited with the quarterback he recruited out of a Hawaii high school and helped make a star while both were at Oregon. It just feels right, though Howie Roseman will have to be dragged kicking and screaming into giving up so much draft capital for a player with some question marks.

In the first place, King seems to believe that Howie Boy Roseman is in charge of Eagles’ player personnel. He is not. Chip Kelly is.

King joined the Doug Gottleib show on CBS Radio and clarified his thinking.

When asked if Mariota would even be available with the fifth overall pick, King was non-committal. “I’m dubious about that. I think he’s going to get hotter as time goes on,” he said. “I still think there’s a good chance that he’ll get picked at number two.”

“And, you know, a lot of people have asked me in the last 24 hours ‘How sure are you of this?’ Are you kidding me? I’m not at all sure of this. The only thing I’m sure of is that Marcus Mariota is going to be a lot hotter commodity nine weeks from now on the day of the draft than he is when everybody thinks that his adjustment to football is going to be so inordinately difficult, to the NFL, that it’s going to really lessen his value as an NFL player. I don’t buy that.

“I think clearly he’s going to have to make an adjustment. It is a projection to call him a great pocket quarterback because he hasn’t had to be that at Oregon. But I still think he’s going to be a very good player and I think that Chip Kelly loves him more than any current person in the draft.

“All is it is putting two and two together and not trying to overthink this thing. But I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the Tennessee Titans either make the pick or trade it to somebody else who really wants Mariota.”

In other words, King just admitted what lots of football fans already know: Predicting the NFL draft is a crap shoot. There are no sure things beyond the top couple picks, so an educated guess about the rest is about as certain as draft projections gets.

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