In the Cleveland Plain Dealer's story today that leads with the release of our old pal Hank Fraley, there is some quarterback speculation. Apparently, despite new prez Mike Holmgren's combine talk about Brady Quinn never having had a proper chance to show what he can do, the Browns are intent on adding a QB, and I've heard speculation that this will happen very soon. Given Holmgren's background and that of GM Tom Heckert, it would seem very likely they're either going to try to pry Matt Hasselbeck away from Seattle, or they want to acquire one of the Eagles' QBs.
I pontificated yesterday about how Donovan McNabb would seem an unlikely fit for the Rams. But the Browns? Again, the key would probably be getting him to sign a contract extension. As he heads toward age 34 by the end of next season, McNabb isn't looking to absorb a beating in a long-term rebuilding situation. But the Browns aren't the Rams. Cleveland finished the season on a four-game win streak. St. Louis has won six games the last three years. Holmgren and Heckert might be able to sell McNabb on the idea of spearheading a quick turnaround. Or, probably more likely, they could be nosing around for Michael Vick. Kevin Kolb? As I've said before, it would be a big, uncharacteristic gamblefor the Birds to trade Kolb right now, with McNabb only under contract for 2010, and the fan base rubbed raw by 11 championshipless years of Donovan and Andy. But if the Browns gave you a draft pick or picks that you thought could put you over the top in 2010 ... well, nobody even knows if there will be a 2011 in the NFL.
This might be the kind of offseason where anything can happen.
The Birds will announce their restricted free agent tender situaton this afternoon. To clarify, if you tender an RFA at all, you have the right to match any offer he gets, and then keep the player. The money he receives, if nobody else steps in, is defined by the level of the tender. The Eagles don't seem to have a restricted free agent anybody else is going to break the bank over. The level of the tender, though, might tell you how much the Birds value a certain player.
BTW, talked to Fraley this morning. He was in South Jersey, closing on the sale of his house there. With Jamaal Jackson fresh off ACL surgery and very unlikely to be 100 percent for the start of the season, Fraley might be a decent pickup for his former team.
"A lot of people have been asking me if I'm coming back to the Eagles," said the man who snapped the ball for the Eagles in Super Bowl XXXIX. He said he doesn't have any idea yet, but he has "a lot of respect for coach Reid and the organization." Fraley said he still talks to former teammate Jon Runyan quite a bit, and to Birds o-line coach Juan Castillo.