Listening to Andy Reid and Angelo Cataldi make nice on the radio is always vaguely unsettling, something you know is being done for the public's benefit, and not because either of the protagonists really enjoys it. Kind of like if Wanda Sykes had to kiss Rush Limbaugh.
The Eagles' coach dropped in on WIP's morning crew Tuesday, and while the 27-minute, 30-second interview contained no revelations, Reid did go more into detail than he has previously on several offseason issues.
Most notably, Reid spoke extensively on why the Birds did not trade for Arizona wideout Anquan Boldin on draft weekend, instead drafting Missouri wideout Jeremy Maclin in the first round. Reid questioned whether the Cards really wanted to trade Boldin, noting that "he's a pretty good player and he's still there." The inference was that if Arizona really wanted to make a deal, someone would have stepped up to the plate. He also suggested that multiple high draft picks and a $10 million-a-year contract might have deterred some possible suitors, but Reid returned to the theme that "I checked into it, and I'm not sure (a trade is) the direction they wanted to go."
Reid emphasized that "I know both sides" of the Boldin impasse "and both sides are good people," something that ought to turn up soon in the Twitter feed of Boldin's agent, Drew Rosenhaus, if it hasn't already.
Reid extensively lauded Maclin. To Cataldi's concern that the new wideout is only 20 years old, Reid said: "He is young. However, he is a mature kid" who should be able to grasp the Eagles' offense well enough to contribute as a rookie.
Reid confirmed the obvious -- that second-round rookie running back LeSean McCoy "most likely" will fill the role vacated by Correll Buckhalter, when Buck signed with Denver. McCoy also is 20.
"He is young, but he'll be fine," Reid said.
In response to a Rhea Hughes question, Reid avoided saying the move of Shawn Andrews to right offensive tackle definitely is permanent, but he expressed confidence that Andrews can do well at the position, and that his brother, free-agent signee Stacy, can dominate at right guard.
Reid said he spoke to Jon Runyan recently at a charity event, and that Runyan still wants to play, as a free agent coming off microfracture surgery, but "right now it doesn't look promising from our end." -- Meaning the Eagles don't really have a role for Runyan, unless Jon really wants to wind down his career sitting next to Winston Justice. Or maybe being Winston Justice.
Cataldi pushed Reid hard on the events surrounding Brian Dawkins' free agent signing with Denver. Reid recapped what we already knew, adding a little detail -- he maintained the Eagles thought they were aggressively pursuing their 35-year-old franchise icon (even though Dawkins has said he was insulted by their offer and their demeanor at the bargaining table). Reid acknowledged the Birds didn't really think anybody else was likely to step up with the kind of deal Denver provided, which will guarantee Dawkins $14 million if he plays two seasons. Reid called the one-year, $7 million-plus Denver guarantee to a 35-year-old safety "unheard of."
Reid implied the Eagles could not have made such an offer, though all available estimates say they have salary cap space to do just about anything they want this year.
Asked why he refused to speak to fans about Dawkins, when asked to do so at the Stacy Andrews press conference the day after Dawkins left, Reid basically reiterated that it was "Stacy Andrews' day," that he has always limited his comments on the day of a signing to matters pertaining to the player being signed.
Reid clearly feels that since he stipulated before the press conference that reporters ought to "let this guy enjoy his day," reporters had no right or responsibility to ask about Dawkins, and that everyone, including devastated fans, should have understood why he didn't say anything about Dawkins then.
This brings up a key question, long pondered by veteran Andy-watchers: Where obliviousness ends and stubbornness begins. It's one of those chicken-and-egg things.
Reid also reiterated that even if Kevin Kolb had rallied the Eagles to victory last Nov. 23 at Baltimore, Donovan McNabb would have started four days later against the Cards. This might or might not be true, but it obviously is the only viable answer today, with McNabb clearly the Eagles' starter heading into 2009. There is no upside to saying "yep, Donovan would be outta here if the kid hadn't thrown that pick that got run back for a touchdown."