Nobody loves anything as much as Jon Gruden loves quarterbacks.
But the former NFL coach and ESPN analyst does think it’s possible to have too much of a good thing.
Via Zach Berman of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Gruden seemed worried that using the second pick in the 2016 NFL Draft on Carson Wentz (or Jared Goff if that’s not who the Rams take) would give the Eagles an overabundance.
“The problem right now I see in Philadelphia is they have too many quarterbacks to be friendly with,” Gruden said. “How are they going to distribute any reps and get anybody ready when you got Sam Bradford making $18 million, you’ve got Chase Daniel who’s a backup making $7 million, and now you have the No. 2 pick in the draft?
“I don’t know how you’re going to get these guys reps and get them ready, but [coach] Doug Pederson will have to answer that.”
Of course, that assumes Pederson has all that much say in this operation, as de facto General Manager Howie Roseman has already reversed a previously held opinion about trading up to trade up aggressively, to create the exact logjam to which Gruden refers.
But Gruden’s concern was primarily about the time it will take for Pederson to install a new offense, and how to divide up practice time so anyone can be effective in it now or in the future.
“When you look at the amount of reps you can have with your team, that number is substantially less than it was five years ago with this new collective bargaining agreement,” Gruden said. “You’ve got a new head coach who’s running a new offensive system — he better get it in there quickly, because the games are about to start — so who’s going to get the reps and who’s going to get the leftovers?
“You don’t have time to get three guys reps. You just don’t. If you do, you’re not running a real sophisticated offense. It’s hard to get one guy to go today, let alone two. So there could be a trade. I don’t want to start any rumors in Philadelphia, but if they do draft a quarterback with all they have invested in him, I’m sure they’ll want to get him as many reps as possible, and that’s going to make somebody I think unhappy and perhaps expendable.”
Of course, Chase Daniel won’t need as many reps to do what Pederson wants, since he’s been doing in the last three years in Kansas City alongside Pederson. That’ll allow him to play stable pony for Wentz if necessary, but at three years and $21 million, that’s an expensive pony ride.