NFL Trade Machine: Finding Matt Barkley A Home

Aug 28, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Matt Barkley (2) warms up before a game against the New York Jets at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Derik Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Chip Kelly and the Philadelphia Eagles continued to turn pro football on its head this off-season.  Their latest bit of craziness came with the signing of Tim Tebow, the former Broncos and Jets quarterback who hasn’t played a game since 2012.  For whatever reason they may have, it has created a logjam at quarterback for Philadelphia.

This has led to widespread speculation the team has plans to jettison backup Matt Barkley via NFL trade.

The hard part of course is finding a team that would give up something for him.  Coming out of USC, Barkley was considered one of the most ideally suited to run a pro-style offense.  He’s not the biggest or strongest but he’s smart, accurate and makes good decisions.  Nobody really knows what he can do at this point though.  Hence the lack of serious interest thus far in what should be a buyers’ market for quarterbacks.

So if there was one team out there that has reason to take a flier on him, who would it be?

New Orleans Saints

Surprised?  Understandable.  The New Orleans Saints have Drew Brees.  Why would they have any serious interest in Matt Barkley?  Simple enough answer.  They have plenty of draft picks to spare, Brees is 36-years old and head coach Sean Payton doesn’t fear rolling with shorter-than-ideal quarterbacks (Brees is 6’0″).

The Saints offensive system is much better oriented to a pro-style attack that Barkley is familiar with and they have a history of putting talented players on offense.  He proved at USC he can win in those conditions.  It’s a low-risk, high-reward proposition for them and gets the Eagles that draft pick they’ll certainly want.