First, just for sake of my hypothetical, I'm assuming that everyone we've picked up so far is healthy. I don't think that's an insane assumption either. For a team that's embraced sports science and conditioning the way the Eagles have, I think this is probably something the Birds' medical staff took a long look at. So let's begin ...
In Kiko Alonso, you may have picked up a potential all-pro in an area of need with the potential that DeMeco Ryans will not return (though Kelly said otherwise today). You pulled this off for a running back that is expected to fall off a cliff soon and making a ton of money. Even going back to last year, there was a TON of debate as to whether or not Shady lost a step.
In my opinion, the defense, even before the draft, as it stands now, is much better.
On offense, yes ... losing Maclin definitely stings. No doubt about it. However, Eagles didn't exactly just let him walk out the door. They did offer him an awfully nice contract rumored to be about $10 million a year. The guy wanted more money and saw a chance to play for his home team.
Personally, I think Jordan Matthews can be an elite player! In the same way that DeSean Jackson's production was replaced by Maclin, I believe Maclin's production will be replaced by Matthews. If you wanted to point to anything as a problem, it was the drop off in production from Riley Cooper. It was clear the Eagles expected much more from Cooper than they ended up with. So, worst case, you might need a #2 or 3 receiver. A commodity that you can definitely find.
You lost McCoy, for a three-headed monster in Polk, Sproles, and Ryan Matthews. In a position that's been so marginalized the last few years that a running back wasn't even drafted in the first round, although you can't "replace" McCoy, I believe you can certainly be productive ENOUGH to succeed.
Lastly, the most controversial move of all ... Foles for Bradford. Now again, I'll point out I'm assuming (hoping?) health isn't an issue. ACL injuries really aren't the catastrophic injuries that they used to be. Wasn't Jeremy Maclin a guy with two ACL injuries? Didn't Adrian Peterson come back off of an ACL injury with a career defining year? As I said earlier, I believe this is a team that does its homework with a player's medical history. Having said that, I don't think it's crazy to assume Sam Bradford is healthy.
I believe too, as reports come out that Washington will not pass on Mariota, that the Eagles made peace with the fact that they're NOT getting the guy they ultimately wanted. The handshake with the Jets turned out to be worthless since Mariota wasn't going to drop to six. This should also cement that Kelly believed that Nick Foles couldn't be much more than, at best, maybe Alex Smith. A serviceable guy, but not someone that can elevate a team to a championship level.
I'm giving Bradford the benefit of the doubt here, and in the interest of full disclosure, I was always a fan of the guy going back to his time at Oklahoma. I think he has elite level tools: great field vision, terrific arm, makes quick decisions and is accurate. He was drafted onto a St. Louis team that was absolutely terrible and not surprisingly, he looked pretty bad as he was attacked relentlessly. In a better situation, I honestly believe he can thrive.
All is not lost, Eagles fans. Let's show a little patience and see how this all plays out. There's plenty of time until training camp.
On that note, I'll leave everyone with something to watch for. If the Eagles redo Bradford's contract in some way, he'll be under center for the season opener. If they sit tight on it, there may still be a another chapter to this ongoing drama ...
By: Chip Kelly's Balls
Follow me on Twitter: @ChipKellysBalls
Follow us on Twitter: @BroadStBeat