The Eagles needn’t overthink this.
Just cut Josh Huff.
Doug Pederson and Howie Roseman clearly have created a culture of entitlement; a team on which accountability is just a word, responsibility a quaint and outdated notion.
Pederson tries to inspire his team with a “Keep Chopping!” rallying cry, but defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz provided a more apt moniker.
This is Team Dumbass.
According to reports, Huff, a third-year receiver and returner, was arrested near midday Tuesday after the Delaware River Port Authority pulled him over for speeding on the Walt Whitman Bridge heading east toward New Jersey. The officer smelled marijuana in the car and Huff subsequently surrendered a small amount of marijuana, a handgun and a magazine that contained six hollow point bullets.
Huff was issued warrants for unlawful possession of a weapon and possession of the bullets and could face up to 10 years in jail thanks to New Jersey’s strict gun laws, with their special emphasis on hollow point bullets. He received a summons for the pot. He also was issued tickets for DUI, speeding and driving with tinted windows.
To review: Huff allegedly was driving 18 mph over the 45 mph speed limit on the bridge at 11 a.m., in a car with illegally tinted windows, emitting enough pot smoke to make a cop suspicious, all the while carrying a handgun with bullets banned for use in warfare by most major powers.
Huff’s arrest is the Eagles’ second gun-related issue this season. Linebacker Nigel Bradham was arrested after he was caught with a loaded gun in his backpack at a security gate on his way back to Philadelphia after the bye week last month. Bradham was (and is) facing felony battery charges for allegedly assaulting a Miami hotel worker in July.
In reviewing Bradham’s gun incident, Schwartz famously said, “You do enough dumbass things, pretty soon, you’re going to be labeled a dumbass.”
Logically, then, if you keep letting players get away with doing dumbass things …
Pederson and Roseman have little to lose by cutting Huff. He’s a Chip Kelly holdover, a one-trick pony on offense who they hardly bother to include unless he gets the ball in the backfield or near the line of scrimmage. He is a talented returner, with a kickoff for a touchdown two weeks ago and a long return Sunday night at Dallas, but they have other returners. He has just 48 catches in 34 career games. He’s small and not especially fast and he’s unlikely to make the team in 2017. The loss of Huff wouldn’t hurt that much.
Not like the loss of Bradham, a starting linebacker familiar with Schwartz’s new defense.
Not like the loss of Nelson Agholor, the starting second-year wideout who was accused of sexually assaulting a dancer at a strip club near the stadium … just hours after the team’s minicamp ended (no charges were filed).
Not like the loss of Lane Johnson, a rising star at right tackle and a cornerstone of the offense who is serving a second PED suspension in three years, this one 10 games.
You can’t cut them. You can cut Huff. Is this a double standard? Absolutely.
This also is a business, not a nursery school. You don’t cut off your nose to spite your face.
Pederson is a rookie coach with scant bona fides. Roseman is a year removed from a humiliating demotion. They are running a circus.
They have had their freshly-signed starting quarterback storm out of workouts and demand a trade.
They have had Agholor, in a rant Sunday in which he bizarrely accused the press of trying to tear the team apart, dismiss his own poor performances.
They have a problem.
There is a human element to consider. Huff comes from a scarred and scary background. Any young player might transgress, and, given his history, Huff might regress. Sometimes, that is an employer's problem. Not this time. The Eagles cannot afford it.
It’s plain to see that, on Team Dumbass, anyone may say anything they want to say and anyone may do anything they please.