Free agency is quickly approaching and it is clear just how much the Philadelphia Eagles will be able to partake. If they wish to, they will have to make more moves to help their cap situation, which happens by releases or trades. That is where Zach Ertz‘s name begins to be thrown into the mix. Ertz only has one more year left on his Philadelphia deal, but they exploring a trade for the long-time Eagle. Ertz was unable to reach an agreement for a new deal last year, and his disappointing 2020 season didn’t help.
The beloved Philadelphia tight end could see his time in Philadelphia end within the coming weeks or days. Ertz has been one of the most productive and reliable tight ends to play for Philadelphia. Additionally, his press conference at the end of the season led fans to believe that an Ertz departure was no surprise. Moving forward, Philadelphia will ride with Dallas Goedert who has been very promising, so far. Plenty of teams need tight ends. Whether they need a new starter or just need more depth, multiple teams are willing to trade for Ertz.
Multiple teams have called the Eagles about the possibility of trading for three-time Pro Bowl TE Zach Ertz, and a deal could happen in the coming days, according to two sources familiar with the talks. @nflnetwork @AroundTheNFL
— Michael Silver (@MikeSilver) March 8, 2021
The Bills have just about every position in good hands, but tight end has not been a focus or strong spot at all. With Josh Allen turning into quite the explosive quarterback he needs a tight end to turn to when his top guys are covered. Dawson Knox was the lead reception leader for tight ends, throughout the entire season he only caught 28 passes. Incorporating the rest of their tight ends, they had 46 total receptions for the tight end core. In a league where the tight end position continues to become more prominent in offenses, those are surprising numbers. Buffalo’s wide receiver squad, led by Stefon Diggs, is one of the strongest in the league, but they need a reliable tight end. Having a trustworthy tight end to turn to in dire situations is huge for any offense.
For a team that is so close to making the Super Bowl, Ertz could be that last piece to the puzzle. Although Buffalo’s current tight ends are not very note-worthy, they play very well in the blocking game. The Bills’ tight ends are one of the most solid blocking tight ends squad in the league, so they serve a strong purpose. If Buffalo pursues Ertz it is clear that they’re just looking to improve the receiving game. Ertz is not known for his ability to exceed at blocking. He is more than capable of blocking and doing so well, but it is clear that he is a receiving tight end. The Bills are certainly in the market for a player like Ertz, he would elevate the offense even more than it is. Ertz would enhance their chances of finally making the Super Bowl.
Los Angeles Chargers
Los Angeles is a solid overall team, but they can never seem to put it all together and tight end is just one part of the problem. Hunter Henry is a solid option, but he can not consistently remain healthy, so the Chargers may begin to lose faith. If that is the case, this could be a tight end switch situation for Philadelphia and Los Angeles. Henry is a good player and has the potential to be one of the better tight ends in the league. He just can not stay healthy for an entire year, so the Chargers find it so hard to depend on him. Ertz has a small history of injuries, with last year being his largest absence over a season. Additionally, Ertz continues to put up as he ranks in the top 5 in catches and receiving yards since 2018. Justin Herbert needs a trustworthy tight end like Ertz who will produce and be available all season.
Ertz is always a threat to be reckoned with for opposing defenses and there is no doubt that he’d continue that in Los Angeles. Hunter Henry has the capability to be the definitive no. 1 tight end for Los Angeles, but injuries prevent that. As a result, the Chargers need to turn to backup Virgil Green, but he’s primarily a blocking tight end. Having solid receiving and blocking tight ends in the lineup is big for an offense, but being limited to a blocking tight end is difficult. If Ertz and Green were to be the tight end duo for Justin Herbert and the offense, they could surprise teams. Deciding to go after Ertz all depends on how confident they are in Hunter Henry, the uncertainty creates issues.
Carolina has not had a reliable tight end ever since Greg Olsen left and that trend has continued. The Panthers have seen a downhill trend over the last couple of years without enough weapons. Although they may want Christian McCaffrey to solve all their problems, he can’t do everything. Carolina has one of the worst tight end situations in the league. The top options that Carolina currently has to choose between are Ian Thomas and Chris Manhertz. Between the two players, they have a little under 60 catches over four years. They are certainly not acceptable or reliable options for Matt Rhule’s struggling offense. Therefore, pursuing Zach Ertz as a solution is more than plausible. Carolina needs another player other than McCaffrey who can be a true difference-maker on the field.
Implementing Ertz into the Panthers’ lineup would serve as a substantial upgrade over what they have now. With Teddy Bridgewater struggling and Carolina considering a first-round quarterback, Ertz would help in either situation. Ertz is a very fluid and fundamentally sound player who can enhance any offense. His route running and ability to get free from defenders will only make the quarterback’s job easier. If Bridgewater hopes to get back on the right track, forming a connection with Ertz would help his chances. Also, if Carolina drafts a quarterback in the first round, that rookie quarterback will have much more confidence if he is throwing to Ertz. Ertz has the potential to turn Carolina into a contender again.
Featured image courtesy of Philadelphia Eagles
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