Eagles' Douglas not your average Joe - Daily News
The people who hate Roseman because he never played the game should love the 40-year-old Douglas, who started 45 games at offensive tackle for the University of Richmond. He just looks as a football guy should look.
More important, he spent 16 years as a scout with the Baltimore Ravens, who have one of the most respected scouting operations in the league under general manager Ozzie Newsome, and another year as the Chicago Bears' director of college scouting before joining the Eagles.
Their assistant general manager, Eric DeCosta, called Douglas "a scout's scout." Mike Mayock, the NFL Network's longtime draft analyst, called him "a pure old-school talent evaluator."
Shortly after taking the job, Douglas brought another product of the Ravens' scouting department on board, hiring Andy Weidl to be the Eagles' assistant director of player personnel. Weidl had spent 11 years as a regional scout for the Ravens.
"The first thing he did was bring in Andy to have someone who spoke the same (scouting) language," Roseman said. "They've both got tremendous presence.
"Joe's got a way of looking and evaluating players that is different than what we've done in the past. And quite frankly, we needed that. He has full rein to set the draft board. He's involved in every discussion we have about building this team. And I think we'll start seeing dividends."
As the Eagles' executive vice president of football operations and Douglas' superior, Roseman was always going to be the one making the personnel decisions this offseason. He will either take credit or blame, and that is why it is fair to question the amount of authority Roseman will hand over to a relative unknown.
We will never know, of course. Sure, there may be dribs and drabs long after the draft, but never in a manner timely enough so that someone can be held accountable. Roseman is in charge, and whether he cedes control to Douglas or not, what matters most is that he gets it right because it's his reputation.
On the surface, he appears willing to hand over some of the reins. Roseman opened his season-ending news conference with a statement that included calling Douglas "a huge addition," and citing his "ability to lead a draft room" and "put together a free-agent draft board."
The Eagles had issues at corner all year. Leodis McKelvin was in and out of the lineup with a hamstring injury and was up-and-down when he did play; Nolan Carroll had his share of struggles, particularly down the stretch; and seventh-round pick Jalen Mills showed promise but experienced the growing pains that come in a rookie season. The Eagles' defense yielded 57 pass plays of 20-plus yards (sixth-highest in NFL), and were the most giving team in the league on deep balls down both the left and right sides of the field.
Scheme fit is a very real thing. It's not out of the ordinary for a player to do well in one system and have issues in another. If Schwartz didn't think he could use him effectively, the chances of Rowe thriving obviously diminish, and so would the player's trade value over time. However, this was an asset that the team invested heavily in, and at a position of great need. Determining he would not be part of the team's plans several years down the line when he was just in the infancy stages of his development seems premature, and the decision to move him when the defense was desperate for able bodies only further impeded the Eagles' chances this season.