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Why the Dorial Green-Beckham trade makes the Eagles harder to root for.

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Long ago, Dorial Green Beckham was a promising young star at the university of Missouri. Coming out of high school, Green Beckham was regarded as the best player in the country, in part due to his abnormal size and speed for such a young player. The 6-6 wide receiver signed with Mizzou, but his stardom was not immediately realized like many anticipated. Green Beckham had a relatively quiet freshman season despite massive expectations, with some calling him the most promising receiver recruit in a decade. Beckham improved upon his freshman with a productive second season with the Tigers, wracking up over 800 yards receiving , flashing the ability to use his size and straight line speed to dominate college corners. There was a lot of hope for his NFL prospects following his sophomore season, but those hopes would come to abrupt stop.

Following his sophomore season, Dorial Green Beckham was excused from Mizzou after he was involved in a domestic violence incident. Allegedly, Green Beckham broke into his former girlfriend’s apartment and assaulted one of her roommates, pushing her down the stairs while he was angrily looking for his girlfriend of the time. After the incident, the police stated that the residents of the room refused to cooperate or press charges "out of fear of retaliation." He had terrified the women involved to the point of legal silence…

Beckham transferred to the University of Oklahoma where he was forced to sit for a year due to NCAA rules. Instead of staying for his senior year to play with the Sooners and possibly rehabilitate his image, Beckham instead opted to enter the NFL draft after only two years of college playing time and a year off from seeing live football action.

The hype train immediately started up again.

The massive, 6-6, 240 pound receiver ran a 4.52 forty yard dash at the combine, prompting people to make outlandish claims about his NFL potential. Of course, they were unfounded. Despite an impressive 40 yard dash for his size, Beckham’s numbers were incredibly underwhelming. This could speak to the fact that Beckham was not a great athlete overall, rather just a big guy with straight-line speed, or that he did not care to prepare enough for the combine. Considering the history, both are equally possible and equally worrying. Flip on the tape for Green Beckham, and more worries begin to arise. It is obvious that a receiver of his size can be an asset. He has moments of astonishing play where he uses his frame to body defenders and make plays on the ball. However, there is a worrying amount of inconsistency and lack of polish to his game while he is in college. He is not a great route runner, he is not quick or sudden, which is not surprising given his size, and more often than not, Green Beckham came across as being passive while the ball was in the air. People were throwing around comparisons to Calvin Johnson, which is irresponsible for basically any receiver prospect, but it seemed especially inappropriate for a player who was not close to the athlete that Johnson was at Georgia Tech and frankly, did not seem to care on the field a worrying amount of the time.

It was obvious that Green Beckham was talented, but the amount of red flags he carried with him just made him totally untouchable.

Alas, size, speed and recruiting pedigree will go a long way in the NFL draft process and we already know they do not actually care about how NFL players treat women. Beckham was drafted in the second round by the Tennessee Titans with the expectations that he would grow with their first round quarterback, Marcus Mariota. The Titans were in search of a true number one receiver and the belief was that Beckham had the tools to become "the guy" in the offense for their young franchise quarterback.

Like most of his career, Dorial Green Beckham’s rookie season did not match the hype. He had some highlight plays and some touchdown catches, but he failed to grow into the immediate weapon the Titans wanted when they drafted him. He was inconsistent in every aspect of the game; creating separation, winning at the catch point or just simply catching the football. Of course he is a rookie who has been away from football for a long time, but the Titans were obviously not satisfied following his debut season in the NFL. Tennessee signed Rishard Mathews away from the Miami Dolphins in free agency and drafted Tajee Sharp, a receiver out of UMass to get more weapons for Mariota. Sharp had a productive career at UMass, but measured poorly at the combine in terms of size and Mathews was basically a one year wonder who was injured. However, both of them were getting first team reps over Beckham in camp and with Kendall Wright, the Titan’s 2012 first round pick, still in Tennessee, there was no room for Green Beckham in the starting line up. The former five star recruit and second round pick could not assert himself in camp over a day three rookie or a guy coming off a season ending injury.

He was expendable to the Titans.

Of course, the Eagles are in need of weapons and saw it as a low risk, high reward trade to move Dennis Kelly, a back up offensive linemen, for Green Beckham. With no Eagles receiver asserting himself in camp or in preseason, and Jordan Matthews sidelined with a knee injury (which he sustained from a dirty hit in camp by a different "choir boy" the Eagles drafted), the Eagles saw it as imperative to take a chance on Green Beckham. The truth is, the song remains the same with Beckham. He is a talented receiver with major focus and route running issues on the field, like every other receiver the Eagles had. Philadelphia’s young group of receivers was a wild card going into the season and nothing changes with this trade. From a football perspective, it is a redundant move where the team is banking on potential that Green Beckham has not met since he was 17 years old.

This is poor football sense, it is worse people sense and it is not the first time the Eagles are going down this path this offseason. They drafted Jalen Mills, who has been popular in camp, despite his involvement in a domestic dispute while he was in college. They have prioritized performance over people, but not even performance, perceived upside as performance. There is nothing to suggest DGB has improved as a person or a player, but the Eagles are investing in the ceiling he has failed to hit year after year. I want to make it clear that second chances are a thing I believe in and something everyone should believe in, but Green Beckham is beyond second chances. He was given chance after chance by Mizzou, the University of Oklahoma, and the Tennessee Titans and has failed each and every test given to him. When the Eagles signed Michael Vick after he was released from prison all those years ago, there was a genuine desire in Michael Vick to make good on his wrongs and he worked his ass off on and off the field to show how deeply apologetic he was and that he was a better man. We have yet to see that from Dorial Green Beckham.

Personally, I find it so hard to root for this year's football team. I will cover them, because I love football and I love Philadelphia, but the 2016 Philadelphia Eagles will have me reluctant to cheer for them on Sundays. Over a year ago, this fan base collectively bashed the Cowboys and Washington football team for bringing in Greg Hardy and Junior Galette, two documented domestic abusers. Frankly, I took a lot of pride in the fact that the football team I rooted for and patronized would have never considered two people like that. Now, with new leadership, the Eagles have thrown that standard out the window and as a fan, while these players are here, I will take no part in it. If the same people who bashed Dallas or Washington for their irresponsibility in enabling abusers are now lauding Philadelphia for their "savvy, low risk" moves, just know that you are part of the problem. I am by no means telling you that you should boycott the team, because I understand the want to escape from a world riddled with political mess every Sunday for a few hours to cheer your heart out for the team you love. However, I am asking you to remain critical and vocal. Domestic violence and the erasure of female voices in the United States is an age old epidemic and it does not get better by teams like Dallas, Washington, Philadelphia, Seattle or any other professional sports team excusing violence for the sake of the product on game day.

This offseason was one of renewal for Philadelphia: A new coach, new franchise quarterback and a new direction. However, if Dorial Green Beckham represents the direction this team wants to go in, it is not a direction that I will embrace, nor should you. It is a direction of desperation, and there are no winners in desperation.

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