Quarterback Sam Bradford is reborn. The Philadelphia Eagles’ QB has a new lease on his football life after a few injury-plagued years with the St. Louis Rams. Although it is just preseason football, things are looking good for both Bradford and the Philadelphia Eagles.
Nobody knew what to expect from Sam Bradford when he was acquired by the Eagles (courtesy of CSN Philadelphia) during the offseason. He switched teams with QB Nick Foles in a rare NFL trade that featured two teams swapping out signal callers.
Eagles head coach Chip Kelly, who is also the head of personnel for the team, had a hunch. He wanted a quarterback who can run his offensive system. Nick Foles had one strong season with the Eagles, but he struggled with inconsistency and nagging injuries. He never seem to be a natural fit with Philadelphia. So when another team came calling, Chip Kelly jumped at the chance to get something for him.
Sam Bradford was not a perfect choice for the Eagles, at least not at first.
Talent has never been Bradford’s problem. Staying healthy is his crutch. After suffering from an injury in just about every season, the label injury prone is immediately applied. A second torn ACL sidelined Bradford for all of the 2014 season. That was when the whispers began about whether he was injury prone or not. An article in Yahoo Sports attempted to debunk this theory.
Sam Bradford is having a phenomenal preseason with the Eagles. He has a nearly perfect completion percentage, only missing on two out of 15 passes in two preseason games. Bradford has passed for over 150 yards, 121 yards coming in the 39-26 win against the Green Bay Packers this weekend. In that game, Bradford threw three touchdowns, showing great poise and a clear grasp of the Eagles playbook.
Bradford’s athleticism is still present despite suffering two ACL tears in the same knee.
Chip Kelly’s offense requires a quarterback who can evade the rush while maintaining a strong pocket presence. Sam Bradford looks the part and has played the part up til this point.
One would think that Bradford would have some tense moments in the pocket. If he has any angst, he does not show it. Bradford’s instincts kick in whenever a defender is near.
It helps that the Philadelphia Eagles has an offensive line better suited for Sam Bradford’s skill set. They are an athletic group who can move the line of scrimmage and pull, taking full advantage of Bradford’s bootleg abilities.
It seems that Sam Bradford is tailor made for the role of Eagles starting quarterback.
After the Packers victory Bradford spoke about his preseason performance thus far (via NFL).
“It was good to see the work we put in during the week pay off tonight. I thought our guys up front did a great job of not only pass protection, but in run blocking as well. It seemed like we were firing on all cylinders tonight, and hopefully it’s something we can continue to do.”
What Bradford sees is a fresh start.
Sometimes when it seems that a player cannot catch a break, they need a change of scenery. For now, it seems like Sam Bradford has found some solace. Not with the St. Louis Rams, but the Philadelphia Eagles.
As long as Sam Bradford can stay healthy, the Philadelphia Eagles have found a franchise quarterback. This looks like a win-win situation for the Eagles, Chip Kelly and Sam Bradford.
[Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images Sport]