GM Roseman Talks About Flurry Of Roster Moves
By Lance Epstein
It seemed like every minute for the last week that Eagles general manager Howie Roseman had a new twist and addition to the roster.
Over the past week, Roseman and head coach Andy Reid have made five trades and two with the Arizona Cardinals. The week began with Roseman releasing five players to meet Tuesday’s mandatory 75-man roster limit. Also on Monday, the Eagles acquired CB Jorrick Calvin from the Cardinals for FB Charles Scott. Not only did the sixth-round rookie play extremely well in the preseason finale, he earned a spot on the 53-man roster.
However, Roseman’s job was far from done. The day after the preseason finale, Roseman made a very bold move as pulled the trigger on another deal with the Cardinals, which sent a 2011 sixth-round pick for offensive guard Reggie Wells. Along with acquiring Wells, the Eagles released 10 players to trim the roster down to 65 players.
After the acquisition of Wells and getting the roster down to 65 players, things really began to get interesting. With just a couple hours before Saturday’s final 53-man roster deadline of 6 p.m., Roseman had a flurry of trades. First, he acquired DE Antwan Barnes from the Baltimore Ravens in exchange for a 2011 seventh-round pick. Then he managed to trade LB Tracy White to the New England Patriots for an undisclosed 2012 draft pick.
Once he was done finalizing the Barnes deal and shipping off White to New England, he turned his focus on trading disgruntled guard Stacy Andrews to Seattle. Unfortunately, Roseman was not able to get the deal done before the deadline, so he was forced to release Max Jean-Gilles.
Don’t worry, Roseman expects Jean-Gilles to be resigned tomorrow to complete the Eagles 53-man roster. Even though the Eagles’ 53-man roster is set, there is still work to be done for Roseman. Now he and the Eagles must assemble an eight-man practice squad.
Nevertheless, Roseman met the media after a flurry of transactions to talk about the Andrews trade, the players the Eagles kept and who could potentially make the practice squad.
Here are Roseman’s quotes:
On the developments leading up to the Stacy Andrews’ trade:
"Well, I think the trade came about like a lot of things that happened this week. You talk to a lot of teams and teams inquire about particular players. Seattle had inquired about Stacy and his situation and I think it's a great opportunity for Stacy to go and play a position that he's probably more comfortable with and that's right tackle."
On the reason for trading Andrews:
"Well, I think Stacy feels more comfortable at the tackle position. He's voiced that and we feel with the addition of (G) Reggie Wells and with the health of our offensive line, we feel comfortable at the guard position. So I think it was a good fit on both sides."
On the disappointment of the Andrews signing not working out:
"Well, I think for us the positive is that we like the players that we have on our offensive line and that we're encouraged about the progress of some of those guys and some of the additions that we made there and we wish him the best of luck in Seattle."
On Andrews failing to be the player they saw with the Cincinnati Bengals:
"To be fair, we watched him at tackle in Cincinnati, and most of the time, he had played three games like he has voiced at guard, so it was a projection. And then he did have the ACL injury and he'll have an opportunity to go back to his position that he prefers to play."
On Seattle trying to fix their offensive line:
"You would probably have to ask them. I know that they had some injuries with their left tackle and their right tackle can play left tackle, as well. But you'd probably have to ask them."
On the starting RG:
"Nick Cole will be our starting right guard."
On the starter at right guard:
"Nick Cole is our projected starter. I feel very confident with Nick. Nick's played a lot of games for us, a lot of football at the right guard position. We feel very confident in Nick Cole's ability."
On C Jamaal Jackson starting vs. the Green Bay Packers:
"Yeah, I think Jamaal, himself, has said that he's very confident that he's ready to go here and he's done a great job in practice. Our strength and conditioning staff and trainers have done a great job getting him up to speed. I'm optimistic that that will continue."
On S Quintin Demps being cut:
"I think for us, we went back to what we felt were the priorities in our football team in our offseason, in terms of depth and numbers at position. Obviously, we're heavy on the o-line, we're heavy on the d-line. We kept six corners. We felt like we had some guys who, in a pinch could play safety, and it was more about some of the guys on the team that we wanted to keep, that we felt could contribute in a variety of roles this year."
On only having three safeties on the roster:
"That's the way the numbers panned out, and obviously, I think that you'll see another safety added here to the practice squad."
On the depth chart at safety particularly the fourth safety:
"I think we have someone in mind here and I think (head) coach (Andy) Reid will go through that. I think we'll talk to the players first before we announce that publicly."
On CB Jorrick Calvin’s performance in the final preseason game made the decision on the secondary tougher:
"Yeah, he did a heck of a job in the preseason game, and he had really intrigued us off of tape. He's got return ability. Not only kickoff returns, but punt returns. He did a good job on special teams, and sometimes it's hard to find corners in this league with cover ability and who can play well on teams and return ability, so he has an intriguing skill set, and we'll see how he does here."
On trading for Antwan Barnes was due to concern with DE Trent Cole’s hurting ankle:
"No. One, we've always had our eye on Barnes, even since he came in the draft. He's got rare speed, and it's hard to find guys who can consistently get pressure on the quarterback. It goes back to our philosophy here that we've said, is that we're going to make sure our defense is able to get pressure on the quarterback. If we're going to go over at a particular spot, it's going to be on guys who can do that, and there's a premium in this league on pass rushers. When you have an opportunity to get one at a value that you think is pretty fair, we felt like the opportunity was too good to pass up."
On Barnes playing defensive end for the Eagles:
"He's going to play end. He's going to put his hand down. And obviously we feel really confident in our defensive lineman and our defensive ends. This was just an opportunity we thought we couldn't pass up. For him, his job is going to be to get to the quarterback when he's on the field in pass rush, and our scheme allows him to get up the field, which is one of his strengths. So, we think he'll be able to come in here and acclimate pretty quickly."
On can Barnes playing each defensive end spot:
On playing linebacker with Baltimore:
"He stood up. He put his hand down, he's a versatile guy."
On the Eagles only having two tight ends next week versus the Packers:
"Yes. We feel very confident that (TE) Clay Harbor kept getting better each game. He had a heck of a game this week. We went with two tight ends last year. It's another position that you could look to the practice squad to add a third guy and we're encouraged with that position."
On G Max Jean-Gilles having to go through waivers:
"No, he's a vested veteran, so he becomes a free agent when he is terminated."
On bringing TE Cornelius Ingram back:
"Those are the things we are going to work through now that we've finished the 53. We now spend time going over the cuts. It's a long night tonight, an early morning tomorrow. Figuring out who we're going to have on the practice squad. Obviously, there are some abilities we saw when we drafted him and I thought he did a good job of coming back in this game and playing faster than maybe he had in the past couple of weeks. And those are things we're going to work through here in the next 24 hours."
On Ingram having bad luck due to his knee continually swelling throughout training camp:
"Yeah, and when we drafted him, it was a transition for him to be an on-the-line blocker. He had started to do that in Florida before he tore his ACL. Again, we're talking about a young player, who's gaining experience and consistently trying to get better."
On the tough decisions when cutting players:
"I don't want to slight any particular player because, obviously we kept these guys and didn't cut them at 75 (players) because they all have some ability. And some of these guys were hopeful that they'll come back on the practice squad and be part of our team. But, some of these veteran guys are hard decisions, you mention (WR) Kelley Washington. Kelley did a heck of a job. He did a good job on special teams. He's a good inside player. And I think he'll get an opportunity from another team in the league, here. He can play certainly. Obviously, (LB) Tracy White did a great job for us last year in his role. (S) Macho Harris started for us last year and he can do a variety of things and I'm sure he'll get another opportunity soon. (S) Quintin Demps, who you've mentioned has been a heck of a kick returner. I think what you see is that we have a lot of rookies here that got up to speed fairly quickly and we went through this and felt that those guys were deserving of spots."
On the 53 players selected today will be the final 53:
"We're really confident with the 53-man we have. But, we're going to spend the next 24 hours looking over the waiver wire and if there's an ability to improve our team at any spot, we'll certainly look at that."
On LB Moise Fokou making the team:
"He's a versatile player and a heck of a SAM linebacker as well and he keeps getting better."
On rookie free agent T Austin Howard:
"Well, it's hard to find offensive linemen in this league. He had a heck of a camp in preseason. He's a big guy, long arms, good athlete, former tight end and we'll try to develop him here and see where we go."