In Howard Roseman I Trust

Howie Roseman will make the decisions for the Philadelphia Eagles in the 2013 NFL Draft.I pledge allegiance to Howard Roseman of the Philadelphia Eagles…

Andy Reid and Donovan McNabb are so linked in perpetuity that it may be easy to forget that Reid didn’t engineer the Philadelphia Eagles’ 1999 draft.  While the rookie head coach may have had some input, he did not draft Donovan McNabb, Tom Modrak did.  But my guess is, Big Red was kind of ok with it.  So here we are, an era later, and the Winter of Eagles’ Discontent has come and gone and left quite a mess in its wake.   But winter is no longer coming.  There is another fresh start ahead, a new Spring dawns, and in Howard Roseman I trust.

… And to the Franchise, for which he stands…

If you’ve ever read Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, you’ll know that in order to be a successful genius, not only to do you need to be an expert at something, but you also need to have a certain amount of luck, to be a victim of some fortunate circumstance that places you in an ideal position for success.  I’m assuming here that Roseman is indeed an expert (be it in talent evaluation, draft preparation, general managing, whatever), in that an expert is defined as someone who devotes at least 10,000 hours to a particular skill (that’s six hours per day for 1,667 days).  And I’m hopeful that this is Roseman’s fortunate circumstance.  Admittedly not many with his background have become general managers of an NFL franchise.  So let’s say he fell into it, but for good reason.  He was persistent, he worked hard, and succeeded at every promoted step along the way.  Even though Jeffrey Lurie has absolved Howie of all responsibility for the 2010 and 2011 draft failures, Roseman had a hand in them and has not impressed.  But there has been improvement, peaking with his hire of Chip Kelly, innovator extraordinaire, as well as with his moves in free agency.  Roseman appears to be a guy that learns from mistakes, adverse to repeating them.

… One City, under God…

Howie Roseman is not Tom Modrak.  Modrak became the Philadelphia Eagles’ Director of Football Operations by way of scout.  Roseman was no scout, at least according to his resume.  No, he was, and is, a football-obsessive.  He is the kid who sits in his bedroom playing Madden in franchise mode, the guy in your fantasy football league who spends way too much time offering trades and making roster adjustments.  He is one of us.  He is a football fan.  He is an Eagle’s fan.  And he is committed to the city in which he works.  He is a guy for whom I want to root.

… With victory and integrity for all.

The NFL draft is a week away and Roseman does not seem to be a power hungry executive with an ego.  He is a collaborator, one who seeks the feedback of his colleagues and thrives in a supportive environment.  It’s quite telling then, that Roseman said yesterday he wants players who represent themselves well, because “It’s a reflection on our organization, on our ownership. We want to make sure we’re bringing the right people into the building.”  This is similar to what Coach Kelly, the man Roseman brought to Philadelphia, said a few days earlier.  Kelly wants the same guys: ”The game is a passion for them.  It’s not something that’s a job.  If you’re checking in at nine and checking out at five then I don’t think those people will last very long.”  This agreement is not coincidental.  There is a framework here for success, for (dare I say it) doing things the right way.

There may come a time, maybe fourteen years from now, when we look to this draft and recall how Chip Kelly’s legacy as head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles was linked to the success of Eric Fisher, Luke Joeckel, Geno Smith, or [insert 2013 draft pick here].  However, like Tom Modrak is to McNabb and Reid (and the eventual power struggle between Modrak and Reid notwithstanding), my hope is that we will remember that it was Howard Roseman’s deft hand that made it all happen.

To that end, in Howard Roseman I trust.

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Jerome's Friend

Jerome's Friend is a native Philadelphian raised properly by great parents who taught him to love the Eagles and abhor the Cowboys. A new parent himself, he hopes to instill those same fundamental values in his son, who at five months-old can already spike a football. If you follow him on Twitter (@JeromesFriend), you'll also find his Eagles and Philadelphia sports blog, Philly's Inferno, where he resides as a Friend of Jerome.