Roseman’s master plan has Eagles in Super Bowl
PHILADELPHIA — Howie Roseman wrapped his arms around Doug Pederson on the sideline in the final minute of Philadelphia’s lopsided win over Minnesota in the NFC championship game and flashed a big smile.
The most criticized team executive in the city engineered a dramatic turnaround.
After finishing last in the NFC East last season, the Eagles ( 15- 3) are in the Super Bowl against the New England Patriots (15-3).
Radio hosts, columnists, writers, fans and even bloggers are not blasting Roseman anymore because he made all the right moves to build a team that’s one victory away from the franchise’s first NFL title since 1960.
It’s been quite a journey for Roseman, the once- exiled executive vice president of football operations.
Roseman rose from being a non-paid summer intern in 2000 to youngest general manager in the NFL at age 34 in 2010. But in January 2015, Roseman lost control of personnel decisions in a power struggle with former coach Chip Kelly.
Owner Jeffery Lurie elevated Roseman to his current position, but gave Kelly full control on the draft, trades and all player moves.
Kelly bombed and was fired less than 12 months later.
Roseman, after spending a year self-reflecting, regained control over personnel decisions. He hired Pederson to coach and Joe Douglas to be vice president of player personnel and quickly began undoing the mess Kelly created.
Roseman traded players Kelly signed to horrible contracts — DeMarco Murray and Byron Maxwell — and built enough assets to help the Eagles move from No. 13 in the draft to the second spot. With the second overall pick in 2016, the team selected Carson Wentz from North Dakota State.
Wentz is the main reason Philadelphia was in position to get to the Super Bowl. He had an MVP-caliber season before tearing his ACL in Week 14 when the Eagles secured the NFC East title.
The Eagles didn’t crumble after losing their franchise player because they have a solid backup in Nick Foles. Kelly traded Foles, one season after he was offensive MVP of the Pro Bowl. Roseman brought Foles back last March, giving him an $11 million, two-year deal to provide insurance behind Wentz.
Foles shredded the Vikings and their topranked defense l ast week.
“It’s a credit to Howie and Joe to bring a guy like that in here who is very capable of getting the job done,” Pederson said.
Many of the players Roseman acquired before the season made big plays in the 38-7 rout over Minnesota.
He signed wide receivers Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith, running back LeGarrette Blount and cornerback Patrick Robinson to team-friendly contracts in free agency. They combined to score Philadelphia’s five touchdowns.