LeSean McCoy
(Jevone Moore/Cal Sport Media/CSM/Shutterstock (9229307y)

Grade The Trade

It’s time to grade the trade that went down between the Buffalo Bills and Philadelphia Eagles. The Eagles will trade pro bowl tail back LeSean McCoy to the Buffalo BIlls for linebacker Kiko Alonso. Chip Kelly Head coach Chip Kelly has been given total roster control this season and made his first trade that successfully shocked the world in the process. It’s hard to declare a winner in any trade so early in the offseason but I will try to grade this trade in a vacuum.

Philadelphia Eagles Acquire Kiko Alonso – C+

The more I look at this trade the more I don’t hate what Philadelphia did, but I think they could have gotten more. I think this was a case where Chip Kelly desperately wanted one of his former Oregon players and was willing to pay whatever price it took. Alonso had a great rookie season by all accounts but a case could be made that Buffalo may have settled on a 3rd or 4th round pick for a player coming off a torn ACL. Personally I always like to play the trade market like the stock market. It’s always a good thing to sell high and buy low. I would have preferred taking the draft pick for Shady McCoy over Alonso but this is Chip Kelly’s world and we’re just living in it. I think the Raiders would have give Philadelphia a 2nd round pick. McCoys massive contract certainly devalued him but its hard to see the motive in settling for a player who may or may not be healthy. Alonso missed all of last season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament during a summer workout. Alonso also had surgery to repair a torn labrum in his hip in May 2014. He also missed all of the 2010 season at Oregon because of another torn ACL.

By all means this trade could look a lot better for the Eagles if they are successful in free agency. The trade gives the team $48.6 million dollars to spend via free agency. If the Eagles can acquire Ndamukong Suh, Randall Cobb, and Adrian Peterson than this trade looks a heck of a lot better. The Eagles almost had to make this move to ensure the return of Jeremy Maclin, a player who is an impending free agent. The Eagles next course of action may be to address the secondary. If they overpay for a corner like Byron Maxwell, the trade all the sudden looks a lot worse. The other X factor is what will the Eagles do to replace McCoy. Will the Eagles draft his replacement or look to fill the void in free agency. Duke Johnson from Miami could be a nice fit, but that pipe dream could all but be kissed goodbye if they package their picks to move up for Marcus Mariota. If Philadelphia decides to give a runningback like C.J. Spiller 8-9 million dollars a season in free agency then this trade looks horrific.

Grading this trade in a vacuum gives Philly a C+, but the moves that follow will ultimately decide the fate of this trade. It’s your move Chip Kelly everyone is anxious to see what’s next.

Buffalo Bills Acquire LeSean McCoy – C

I may be in the minority here but I’m not so sure I like what Buffalo did here. Is it possible that McCoy is over rated? Shady has played for brilliant coaches his entire career. Andy Reid who is now is Kansas City, coached the LeSean from 2009-2013. Once Reid found a home in Kansas City he used the same offensive scheme to turn Jammal Charles into one of the NFL’s best runningbacks. When it was Chip Kelly’s turn to take over the Eagles McCoy was able to play for another offensive genius. Darren Sproles for instance average 5.8 yards per carry this season compared to 4.2 in 2013 with the Saints. Bills offensive coordinator Greg Roman is not the offensive mind that Chip Kelly is. Rex Ryan is a heck of a coach, but he runs the defense and has little impact on the offensive side of the ball. If McCoy stats diminish in Buffalo he could wind up being released the following season because of his massive cap number. The Bills now only have roughly 15 million to spend during free agency after the completion of the Matt Cassel trade. That number will make it difficult for the Bills to sign any impact free agents. Buffalo also does not own a first round pick because of the Sammy Watkins trade.

I think LeSean McCoy is a great player but I question the fit. It also appears the all pro half back is not particularly happy about being traded to the Bills.

ESPN’s Josina Anderson:

A source close to LeSean McCoy to me on how the #Eagles RB feels about news of an agreement to trade McCoy to Buffalo: He’s a Pennsylvania kid. He’s never played football outside of Pennsylvania—high school, college, pro. So of course he’s not happy. Sounds like it’s pretty final to me unless LeSean is refusing to go to Buffalo.

Its probably safe to say McCoy will eventually get over the move but it’s never a good thing to have unhappy players in the locker room.

The source went on to describe McCoy’s feelings on the move from Philadelphia to the Buffalo market, saying: “It’ll be interesting to see how this process plays itself out because he’s an interesting individual. In your mind, when you think of Buffalo you think of cold and losing games. It’s not like it’s the Philadelphia market where you’re always on t.v. and you’re playing for like the division title or that type of thing…It was unexpected. I’ll tell you that much.”

The same source told Anderson that McCoy is “frustrated” and is “not going to make it easy, that’s for sure.”

That all being said Ill give the Bills a C. The offseason has only just began so it will be interesting to see what’s next. General Manager Doug Whaley has certainly been busy so far. Resigning Jerry Hughes will be the next task on his plate.