Why Bradford is on the list
As Gregg Rosenthal wrote early last season, Chip Kelly has essentially created the quarterback-proof offense. Bolstered by Kelly's ability to scheme defensive confusion and wide-open passing windows, Eagles quarterbacks have combined to average roughly 4,500 yards and 30 touchdowns over the past two years.
"I'll be one hundred percent honest with you," long-time friend Ben Bench recently said. "Sam could have played college basketball, without a doubt. And he probably could have played a couple of other sports if he cared about them. It's always incredible to me how athletic he is."
"Trust me when I tell you he's got all the skills, and I keep going back to the fierce competitor because I believe elite quarterbacks in this league have that," Spagnuolo said in May. "You think of them all, the Aaron Rodgers, the Tom Bradys, the Peyton Mannings, Eli Mannings, they're all very fierce competitors. They love the challenge. They love to rally people around them, and Sam has that. I really believe that."
Spagnuolo's praise might seem excessive, but Kelly also invoked the names of Manning, Brady and Brees while stating that Bradford wouldn't have been available for trade if not for injury concerns.
Despite six years of mediocre game film, scouts and coaches still drool over Bradford's prototypical size (6-foot-4, 235 pounds), obvious arm talent and underrated athleticism.
When Bradford is healthy and playing to his potential, he can improvise in the pocket and make all of the NFL throws with pinpoint accuracy -- as you can see in the video above.
How many quarterbacks can say the same? To paraphrase Bum Phillips, it doesn't take long to call the roll for that class of player.
Bradford's obstacles are three-fold.
More excuses have been made for Bradford than any quarterback over the past half-decade. He's cycled through three offensive coordinators, St. Louis' schemes have lacked imagination, the offensive line was often in tatters, his receivers lacked any semblance of downfield playmaking ability and the running game failed to keep defenses honest.
There's a measure of truth in all of that, but it speaks to Bradford's tangible regression over five seasons that undrafted third-string quarterback Austin Davis completed at least 69 percent of his passes at greater than 7.5 yards per attempt in each of his first three NFL games -- a feat Bradford has yet to accomplish over any three-game span in his career.
Settling into bad habits after taking too many hits early in his career, Bradford showed shaky pocket presence, come-and-go accuracy, poor decision-making and a lack of anticipation when we last saw him in 2013.
As NFL Media's Matt "Money" Smith put it, Bradford's aerial attack had devolved into, "One Mississippi, two Mississippi, three ... checkdown!"
Kelly will have to rewire his quarterback to trust his offensive line and receivers, with the goal of taking more chances down the field and re-introducing a chunk-play element to Bradford's game.
Desperation opens the mind.
Bradford's first step to making the offense soar is to win a quarterback competition rigged in his favor. If he does manage to avoid an August faceplant and stay healthy for 16 games, he's a virtual lock for a career year in an inherently quarterback-friendly system.
Those are brobdingnagian "ifs."