Rating the Rumor: Eagles could trade Connor Barwin

Rating the Rumor: Eagles could trade Connor Barwin

The Eagles are currently $10.6 million under the NFL salary cap, but stand to almost double that figure if they dump defensive end Connor Barwin. That doesn’t necessarily mean releasing Barwin, either, at least not if a trade market emerges, as Mark Eckel for NJ.com suggests.

Some weeks back, Eckel reported there will be a handful of suitors for Barwin if the 2014 Pro Bowl selection is on the block.

One would think the Eagles would be open to the idea. At present, Barwin is set to take up $8.35 million in cap room for 2017, $7.75 million of which can be converted to savings in the event of a trade or his release. That’s a lot of money for a 30-year-old player who struggled with a position change last season, recording 34 tackles, 5.0 sacks and 1 forced fumble.

Another alternative might be to restructure Barwin’s contract, an idea the eight-year veteran seemed open to at one point. Yet what even is his value to the Eagles? To put into perspective how ineffective Barwin was after the move to defensive end and a 4-3 alignment, he graded 31st out of 32 qualifying players in pass-rush productivity. Expanded to include the entire league, teammate and noted draft bust Marcus Smith fared better.

As much as Barwin might like to stay, it’s unclear whether that’s in the Eagles’ best interests, even at a reduced price. Moving on makes sense.

With that in mind, you have to wonder what kind of market there will be for Barwin’s services. Sure, if he were a free agent, numerous teams would inquire, as Eckel’s source suggests. As far as a trade, though, it’s difficult to envision there being much of a market.

Whether Barwin is a better fit for a 3-4 defense or not, there are a combination of factors working against him. His lack of production in the Eagles’ scheme in 2016 is not completely irrelevant, especially given his age. In fact, $7.75 million is expensive for Barwin regardless.

Barwin earned a big raise after racking up a career high 14.5 sacks and generally being one of the most disruptive edge defenders in the NFL in 2014. Yet in his other three seasons with the Eagles, he has 17.0 sacks total. While rushing the passer isn’t all Barwin does – or even what he’s best at – that’s the ability teams are typically willing to pay the most for.

There’s one more potential issue with a trade. The Eagles might want that $7.75 million in cap space as soon as possible, at least as long as they intend to do anything significant in free agency. That means the club can’t necessarily afford to hang on to Barwin and dangle him in the hopes another team wants to trade a late-round pick for an aging player with a steep price tag.

Is Barwin going to be a coveted player this offseason? Absolutely, and he’ll perform well in the right situation. Could a trade theoretically get done along with a restructured contract? That might be the only way it happens.

There are a lot of moving parts here, and with free agency set to open on March 9, not a great deal of time remaining to get all of this done. Just because a player will draw a lot of interest as a free agent doesn’t mean teams will be lining up to make a trade, and the Eagles might be best served to cut the cord quickly and get cash on hand.

Rating the Rumor: Plausible, but logistically problematic

Malcolm Brogdon is gonna be the most hilarious Process Enemy ever

Malcolm Brogdon is gonna be the most hilarious Process Enemy ever

Be honest: You knew this was going to happen. Joel Embiid only played 31 games. Dario Saric was only good for half a season and ended the year on a bum note. Both of them played for a bottom-five NBA team. Malcoln Brogdon put up 75 games' worth of competent-plus numbers for a team that made the playoffs. Him winning Rookie of the Year at Monday night's first-ever NBA Awards was as inevitable as Drake making a joke about his Instagram exes during the opening monlogue, and even hours before it was announced, it seemed like Sixers Twitter was getting testy in anticipation. 

But you know what? It's fine. No, I don't believe Malcolm Brogdon deserved to win over Joel Embiid by any stretch of the imagination -- Dario's case is a little more arguable than we'd probably want to acknowledge -- and I agree with everyone else cackling over how ridiculous Brogdon beating Embiid is gonna seem five years, five months, five JoJo tweets from now. But I'm also kinda looking forward to those next five years, because The Process just got itself a hilariously innocuous new mortal enemy. 

By most accounts, Brogdon seems like a pretty harmless dude. He seems destined to be the 15th best point guard in the league -- the kind of guy who'll get traded in a package for a legit star at least three times in his career by a team attempting to go over the top. His understandable reaction upon accepting the Rookie of the Year award was the slightly over-eager excitement of a guy who hasn't had to give a ton of acceptance speeches in his life; not exactly the coolest dude on the block, but one you can't really hate on either. 

                        [Sixers Twitter shuts down Bucks' Rookie of the Year bragging]

Well, unless you're a Sixers fan. If Sixers fans have demonstrated one thing over the past four seasons, it's that it's not particularly hard for us to hate on anyone, and a well-meaning rookie point guard with a hearty smile is as easy a target as the next. And now, Malcolm Brogdon will feel the true wrath of Process pettiness. 

When Malcolm Brogdon takes the floor at the Wells Fargo Center next year, he will be booed. When Malcolm Brogdon steps in a Wawa next year, he will be booed. If Malcolm Brogdon attempts to stream a song by Hall & Oates or Boyz II Men next year, he will be booed by his Spotify account. Verily, Malcolm Brogdon's NBA existence is about to be very largely defined by just how much hot air the Philly Phaithful is gonna expend just so he never forgets our outrage over how he had the temerity to win an award that one time. (And actually showed up to accept it!)

It's gonna be a lot of fun -- not like the next few seasons will likely be lacking in fun to begin with -- and at the end of the day, we'll probably get far more joy out of Brogdon's Sixers supervillainy than we would have in a single statue in Embiid's soon-to-be-very-cramped trophy case. JoJo himself seems fine with the L, and that's because he knows he has us behind to pick up the vengeful slack. That's what us Process Trusters are good for: We're bitter, stupid and endlessly vindictive so you don't have to be.

Sixers Twitter shuts down Bucks' Rookie of the Year bragging

Sixers Twitter shuts down Bucks' Rookie of the Year bragging

Like an elephant, Sixers Twitter never forgets.

That was evident when fans of the Rights to Ricky Sanchez Podcast made #RTArmageddon trend in the United States on Twitter when the Sixers traded up for the first pick in the 2017 NBA draft by retweeting old takes on the team.

Those same they fans won’t soon forget the shade the Milwaukee Bucks Twitter account threw after Malcolm Brogdon was named Rookie of the Year on Monday night (see story).

After Brogdon was tabbed ROY, the Bucks tweeted out these two barbs at the Sixers and their fans.

This did not go over well.

This comes exactly one week after the Sixers’ Twitter account laughed at the Bucks throwing shade at “The Process.”

With some of the best and brightest stars in the NBA on both rosters, could a rivalry of sorts be brewing between the teams? 

The jury is still out on that, but you better believe Sixers fans on Twitter will not forget the shade thrown from the Bucks over the past week.

This Twitter war has just begun.