Gordon: Rams dump Bradford, upgrade at QB Live
Sam Bradford won't be a lame duck quarterback on a lame duck team this season.
He will be a Philadelphia Eagle instead after that team paid a premium to get him.
After insisting again and again and again that Bradford was their guy, Jeff Fisher, Les Snead and Co. moved the oft-injured Bradford to Philly for Nick Foles -- who threw 27 touchdown passes and just two interceptions during an epic 2013 campaign.
Rams fans should love this deal. Bradford remained a huge injury
liability after still another knee operation. He was heading into the walk (limp? hobble? stagger?) year of his onerous contract paying him $13 million for the coming season. His camp resisted reworking the deal, which was crazy.
Sure, he seemed better than any of the free agent options available this year -- but Bradford was certainly less appealing than Foles. Especially playing on one good leg for $13 million.
Foles suffered a broken clavicle and missed half the games last season. He is an iron man compared to Bradford, though, and he is still developing at the age of 26.
In 28 NFL games Foles has 46 TD passes, 17 interceptions and a 94.2 passer rating. In 18 games as a starter for Eagles coach Chip Kelly, he went 14-4. Overall he is 15-9 as a starter.
He put up those numbers on a good team with some great weapons, but success is still success.
He struggled enough last season, it seems, to convince coach Kelly that he didn't Eagles offensive scheme. Kelly's fascination with Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota is well-documented and he may yet act on that love.
Still, many NFL scouts hold Foles in high regard. Why the Eagles would make this trade without getting the 10th overall pick in the draft is baffling. More amazing: The Rams came out ahead in the draft pick swap, sending a No. 5 in 2015 with Bradford for a No. 4 in '15 and a No. 2 in 2016.
(The Rams would send back a No. 4 in '16 if Bradford doesn't start for the Eagles this season and a No. 3 if he gets hurt. That is small consolation to the angry mobs in Philly.)
With Foles locked is as the Rams starter, Shaun Hill took his talents to the Twin Cities as the new back-up for the Minnesota Vikings on a two-year that could pay $7.5 million. For his sake, let's hope he is more careful with those slant passes at the goal line.
To replace Hill, the Rams burned a seventh-round pick to bring quarterback Case Keenum back from the Houston Texans. Keenum provided emergency depth for the Rams last season but never saw action for them.
As for Bradford, he reunites with his first NFL offensive coordinator, Pat Shurmur. The memories!
"He's been extremely strong-willed and he's given it everything," Rams defensive end Chris Long said via Twitter. 'We will miss him. This team is primed to win NOW and I look forward to winning with Nick. You just never get used to seeing friends move on in this business."
But with quarterback Mark Sanchez under contract for two years and $9 million in Philadelphia, Bradford may just be passing through.
The Rams realize significant salary cap savings in this trade, with Foles earning about $11.5 million less. With some of that money, ESPN reports the team re-upped tight end Lance Kendricks for four years and $18.5 million.
Here is how the Twitterverse responded to the trade: