The biggest question around the Philadelphia Eagles continues to be the future of Sam Bradford. The quarterback is preparing to become the best free agent available and is looking to get paid as such. The Eagles are starting to hand out contracts to certain players, but Bradford has yet to be one of them. While the team remains quiet on the status of their former starter, players are making it clear how they feel while the team meets with other options.
Zach Ertz just signed a nice, new contract to remain with the Eagles for the next five years and he is making it clear who he wants his quarterback to be. The tight end told the media following his contract extension that Bradford is the best option to run the Eagles offense under new head coach Doug Pederson and he believes the quarterback does want to return in 2016.
"I think he's excited," Ertz said, via CSN Philly. "He wants to be in Philadelphia. Whether he's back here or not, that's none of my business. Obviously, he's going to do what's best for him and the Eagles are going to do what's best for us. But at the end of the day, I think he does want to be here."
According to Les Bowen of Philly.com, the Eagles want to retain Bradford, but they have no plans on overpaying for the quarterback. Early reports stated that Bradford requested $25 million annually from the Eagles in a previous negotiation for a contract. The Eagles will not meet that, so unless the quarterback lowers his demands the team could be looking at other options.
Bowen reports that a franchise tag might be the most likely option for Bradford. The one-year contract would be worth $20 million while giving both parties a chance to figure out the future. Bradford played well last year, but did not overly impress. He did prove to be healthy after back-to-back ACL injuries, but how much is that worth? Pederson along with Jordan Matthews have also expressed their desire to keep Bradford around, but they are not the ones writing the check.
The Eagles are not banking on the return of Bradford. According to NJ.com, the Eagles are meeting with Carson Wentz at the Senior Bowl. The former North Dakota State star has been rising up the draft board and could potentially be the first player at his position taken. Jared Goff and Paxton Lynch remain options as well. The Eagles have Mark Sanchez as insurance and while starting a rookie Week 1 is not the most ideal thing, it might end up being the team's only option.