Reported Trade Offer by Chip Kelly Shows How Much He Coveted Mariota

Last night’s NFL draft came and went with only two trades. While a number of interested teams discussed trading for Tennessee’s second overall pick, the Titans held firm and drafted 2014 Heisman Trophy winner and former Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota.

The Cleveland Browns reportedly offered the 12th and 19th picks to Tennessee for the second pick, but were rebuked. The New York Jets and St. Louis Rams also are believed to have inquired about the second pick, but no details of the discussion have been reported.

A few hours before the draft, the Chicago Bears and Philadelphia Eagles came hard at Tennessee with strong offers. The Bears’ offer reportedly included Jay Cutler who played college football at Vanderbilt located in Nashville, but I am unsure if Chicago also offered the 7th pick they eventually used on West Virginia wide receiver Kevin White. If Cutler wasn’t so erratic, I may have taken that trade offer because the top 15-20 rated players in the draft can make immediate impacts at the pro level. The Bears denied Cutler was included in any trade talk, but there is no way they would trade for the second pick without drafting Mariota.NFL: Tennessee Titans at Philadelphia Eagles

Eagles’ coach Chip Kelly is furiously denying players were included in any trade offers made to the Titans. However, I do not put much faith in Kelly’s words these days. He says one thing and does another such as him declaring he was comfortable with quarterback Nick Foles and running back LeSean McCoy only to trade them both. Kelly also doesn’t want to offend his players and disrupt team chemistry by admitting certain players were included in his trade offer. Anyway, Kelly supposedly offered the following to Tennessee who held firm and turned it down: starting quarterback Sam Bradford, Pro Bowl defensive tackle Fletcher Cox, starting linebacker Mychal Kendricks, nickel cornerback Brandon Boykin, two first round picks, and a third round pick.

If this was truly the offer Kelly made for Mariota, it shows how much he truly coveted his former quarterback to run his offense at the pro level. Kelly said he would not mortgage the future to obtain Mariota, but that trade offer would have done just that. Three starting players and a nickel corner are strong offers, but adding in the two first rounders and a third rounder make this offer absolutely crazy. With so many holes to fill, Tennessee could focus on rebuilding over the next few years, but Coach Ken Whisenhunt and their staff wanted an upgrade immediately at the quarterback position and must believe that even the rookie Mariota is an upgrade over incumbent Zach Mettenberger and Bradford who was the first overall selection in the 2010 draft coming out of the University of Oklahoma and a former Heisman trophy winner himself in 2008.

If Kelly truly offered this trade proposal to the Titans, he should go to church on Sunday and thank the good Lord that it was not accepted. First off, trading Bradford would have possibly angered new free agent acquisition DeMarco Murray who has stated he felt comfortable coming to Philadelphia with Bradford on the roster since they were roommates in college and are best friends. Angering another player and losing his trust is another thing that Kelly cannot afford after the way he has revamped the roster this offseason. He definitely wants to do things his way and doesn’t care who he offends along the way. Losing a stud defensive tackle such as Cox would have definitely caused a stir in the locker room and with fans.

As a Cowboys’ fan, I definitely would have loved that trade to go through because it would have weakened the Eagles as a team. Oh well, knowing Kelly, he may not be done trying to secure Mariota whether it is this offseason or next.

And that’s as I see it!

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Twitter handle: @Scott_AsISeeIt

Internal photo courtesy of http://www.ftw.usatoday.com

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