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A Kolb trade could end up deciding NFC West race in 2011

  • By NFL.com
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The future of Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Kevin Kolb has been a topic of discussion all offseason. So, where will Kolb eventually play in 2011?

Jason La Canfora: Two-team derby

It's looked for quite some time like the NFC West would be Kolb's new home and nothing has changed with that in the least. Kolb has been bracing for this possibility and landing in Arizona or Seattle would not come as any surprise to him, according to a source with knowledge of the situation.

The Cardinals and Seahawks need quarterbacks, are both enamored with Kolb and are willing to make a bold move to get a passer (they battled over Charlie Whitehurst as a restricted free agent just a year ago, remember). Both teams are in a weak division where even decent quarterback play could equate to a division title. Kolb is by far the best thing available at this point and both clubs opted to pass repeatedly on any of the "Big Seven" quarterbacks from the draft.

The loser of the sweepstakes could end up with Marc Bulger or Matt Hasselbeck. However, Kolb provides the kind of long-term stability at the quarterback spot that these other options simply do not.

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Bucky Brooks: Desert destination

The Eagles will eventually trade Kolb to the Cardinals. The deal is sensible because it gives Arizona a young quarterback with some experience and tremendous potential. He is an ideal fit in the Cardinals' quick-rhythm passing game, and the presence of Larry Fitzgerald gives Kolb a legitimate No. 1 receiver. Although Seattle and San Francisco would also be good landing spots, Arizona seems like the right place for Kolb to take his game to the next level.

Pat Kirwan: No place like home?

Unless the Eagles get all they are asking for and more, the smart play is for Kolb to stay in Philadelphia. While Michael Vick is awesome, he has completed a 16-game season just once in his career. Vick's going to be 31 in June, probably will run the ball 100-plus times this season and gets sacked once every 11 pass plays. Even if he's still in an Eagle uniform, Kolb will play in 2011.

From a business standpoint, Kolb has only one year left on his contract so the time to trade him is now. At least eight teams are in need of a quarterback. The longer the lockout goes, the more valuable Kolb is to a team because he has experience, particularly in a West Coast offense. Ultimately, he will likely be with an NFC West team that gave up a first-round pick, a later-round pick and a veteran player. Things could change if Carson Palmer enters the equation, but it should come down to Arizona and Seattle. Still, don't forget about San Francisco.

Vic Carucci: Kolb will be left seeing red

Arizona. The Cardinals have absolutely no answer at quarterback. That hardly puts them in exclusive company, but it will motivate them to be fairly aggressive in making a trade to acquire Kolb. They see him as a perfect fit to a timing-based passing attack that features Fitzgerald and other playmakers. Kolb, with the training he received from the Eagles' coaches, can utilize the weapons to the fullest thanks to his ability to see the entire field and deliver the ball on rhythm. The Cardinals have enough of the right pieces to jump back into contention except for one: Quarterback.

Charles Davis: Competition will be stiff

I think Kolb eventually lands in Seattle. I know that there will be numerous suitors for his talents -- Arizona and Miami among them. However, with Matt Hasselbeck appearing to be ready to move on from Seattle, the Seahawks would love to have a veteran quarterback with minimal mileage and some nice NFL production in the fold. That's the case even with the presence of Charlie Whitehurst.

Steve Wyche: Kolb's impact could be twofold

As much as it's assumed the Eagles will trade Kolb because of the value they can get in return, I'm not sure they will. Philly doesn't always go with the common thinking. The Eagles are about winning championships, so they won't move him unless they get a primo offer. That said, Arizona and Seattle seem set to get into the sweepstakes, with the Cardinals poised to possibly throw out the biggest deal. Arizona doesn't have an option on the roster that's ready and there doesn't seem to be any interest in Donovan McNabb. Kolb fits what the Cardinals want to do and part of what they want to do is retain Fitzgerald, whose contract is nearing its end. Getting someone like Kolb, who has enough experience to step in on short notice, could get the Cardinals back in playoff contention quickly in the NFC West and appease Fitzgerald.

Michael Lombardi: A surprise reunion?

My instincts for where Kolb will play were heightened when the Falcons made the huge trade with the Browns during the draft, in which they sent a future first rounder to the Browns. That pick acquired by Cleveland might be the one needed to acquire Kevin Kolb and reunite him with the man who was responsible for drafting him, Browns general manager Tom Heckert. Kolb would fit perfectly into the rebuilding of the Browns.

Elliot Harrison: Joining another flock

I'd like to say Philadelphia. If there was any way to do it, I think Andy Reid and company would be better served keeping the guy. Vick had a great 2011, yes, but his athletic style of play could get him in trouble now that he's in his 30's, not to mention he was an erratic quarterback in Atlanta. That said, unfortunately, if Philadelphia wants any compensation for Kolb, now's the time. Arizona seems to be a more logical fit than, say, Oakland. It's pretty apparent the Cardinals planned to trade for or acquire a quarterback through free agency, as opposed to drafting one. Barring some Palmer shocker, Kolb would be the guy.

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