I have a crazy idea. Crazy enough that it just might work. Also crazy enough that it would probably never happen, but I would like opinions.
You all have seen the show "Who Wants to be a Millionaire", correct? I haven't watched it in some time (though I used to religiously), but I do recall that one of the lifelines available was to poll the audience. Now, from what I recall, no matter how hard the question- the audience was correct probably 95% of the time. The few times they got it wrong was close and very surprising. I kind of wish the F.O. would do a similar thing.
Here's the pitch: There are fans out there. Big fans. HUGE fans. People that love the Eagles because they bleed green, not because they get a paycheck with the Eagles' logo in the corner. I GUARANTEE Jimmy would be able to work as a consultant in the Eagles' F.O. He does a ton of research, understands the basic ins and outs of contracts, and has well thought-out, (usually) non-emotional opinions. He looks at things from all sorts of angles. Jason too. I've read fan posts where you guys (the contributors) thoroughly explain intricate and obscure laws, rule changes, and other technicalities. There are a lot of intelligent fans out there. Many on this blog alone. I feel like if the Eagles took advice from a large number of the intelligent fans, they could maybe form an opinion based on a popular educated consensus, or at the very least use it as a tool. I feel like if they said (for example, I understand this isn't realistic), "Hey, should we draft Brandon Graham AND Daniel Te'o-nesheim two rounds apart?" The vast majority would say hell no. I know I would have. And look what happened- (though it may be too early to judge) it didn't work out at all. Many of us were really upset when it happened. We were right. They were wrong. I am also in no way considering myself in the upper echelon of intelligent fans. I don't think I am.
So here's how I would do it. I would set up a very private and secure blog. Then I would spend a month and handpick maybe 1,000 hardcore fans- writers, bloggers, business men, bar tenders, teachers... doesn't matter the occupation. I would then have them write a short article about how they would change the team, what they think will work out, won't work out, and whatever other things I could think of. Again, the "I" is hypothetical. I don't think I could personally do this. Then once I get a healthy number of people, blog commencement.
A few other things:
- This blog would absolutely HAVE to be secure- big repercussions if this is violated. Maybe only specific IP addresses can access it (I'm not an IT guy, but it's possible), not to be talked about, and password protected. Also, it would naturally be completely, 100% troll-free obviously.
- The FO wouldn't want to pay 1,000 people, so the incentive is that they would know that their voice is being heard by the coach, GM and everyone else involved with making personnel decisions. They would be directly contributing to helping out a team that they would shed blood for. That should be enough incentive for anyone I'd be interested in hiring.
- I know this is different than the "Millionaire" show in that it asks opinions, not facts. There could be a discussion section to explain why your opinion is what it is. It could show rebuttals. It would get the F.O. thinking more.
- I worry about there being too many "yes men" in this business. I'm sure very few people enjoy saying "Howie, you're wrong. This move doesn't make sense because a, b, and c" especially if he signs their pay check. Without the fear of being fired, contributors can speak their mind passionately without worry of losing their livelihood.
- This would be cheap. It would cost the amount to pay a programmer to build the site, a person to find 1,000 fans and read their articles, and the cost to upkeep the site. That's pennies compared to what their budget is and they'd be expanding their "scouting" department 100x.
I'm sure they think they have enough opinions but I don't agree. !,000 is better than 10 especially when those opinions can be obtained in one, easily accessible place AND (most importantly) don't have to worried about being fired if they strongly disagree with one of the top dogs.
Again, this is just a fun idea. I think it'd be awesome and it would further connect the biggest and smartest of fans to their teams. I know it's a long fan post for such a pointless idea because it would probably never happen, but I would love if the future of sports went this way. Howie Roseman: "Hey Andy, I was reading the Consulting Board and this guy mentioned this blah blah..."
Could be cool. What do you guys think? How would you choose the people to be on the "Consulting Board" or whatever the hell you'd call it. Do you think you'd want to be a contributor? Do you think this could or would ever happen if the idea was pitched the right way? Where would the holes be?
Allow me to introduce exhibit A: