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Heckert's time to shine

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Eagles GM Tom Heckert (credit philadelphiaeagles.com
Last offseason the sharks were circling around Tom Heckert. He had a big hand in picking the team that had, at that point, won 4 of the last 5 NFC East titles and won more playoffs games than only one other team in the past 7 years. His draft in 02, which he was given a ton of credit for, is legendary. It yielded 3 pro bowlers and 5 full time starters in the NFL.

Up until last year he was the Eagles' Vice President of payer personell and more than one team wanted to make him their GM. The Eagles gave him the bump up to GM, but the fact remains that Andy Reid has the final say on all personell moves. People in the organization claimn that Andy trusts Tom implicitly, but no one outside of the NovaCare complex knows how much. Has Tom ever wanted to pick a guy that Andy didn't? Has Tom ever lobbied against a guy that Andy picked? Is Tom out there scouting the players he thinks are best or the ones Andy tells him to? We just don't know.

We do know, that Andy has final say. However, this year could be very very different. We all have read the stories about the unfortunate troubles that Andy Reid's family is facing right now. There's been alot of speculation that Andy could take some time off from the team to try to right the situation at home. Frankly, I don't think any logical person would blame him if he did. Family is more important than football. However, to take some time off now would be putting yourself behind the 8 ball in terms of preparing for the draft. Even if he didn't take a significant leave of absence, you have to imagine he'll miss some things in order to deal with his family. At the very least, he'd have to be a bit distracted.

This is where where Tom Heckert makes his money. Andy showed when he gave up the playcalling to Marty Morningwheg that he is starting to trust the people he has around him to take pressure off himself. That's something Andy Reid has not always been great at. When he started here, and at various times during his tenure we've heard stories about Andy being a bit of a control freak. I'm not saying it was a bad thing, frankly this team needed that. However, we've really seen Andy soften up on that. He's now letting his assistants talk to the media(there was a time they weren't allowed), he's letting someone else call the plays(which is something he hadn't done in 7 years)ect... I really believe this is the year he lets Tom Heckert do his thing. This year's draft, for better or worse, I think will be known as Heckert's draft.