Jeffrey Lurie should give Howie Roseman full control of the Eagles' personnel department. He should hand him the draft and free agency and even let him choose the final 53-man roster.
The suggestion may sound outrageous considering Roseman's dubious tenure as general manager. But Lurie made it clear in January when he kept the 40-year old - despite removing him from football operations - that Roseman would return to power if the Chip Kelly experiment didn't pan out.
So there's no point in speculating about a future without Roseman. Call it Lurie's blind spot or his unwavering belief that the now-vice president of football operations deserves a second chance, but Roseman isn't going anywhere and he likely has as much power as he ever had.
But Lurie should hold Roseman as accountable as he held Kelly. And that means clearly defining his role so that there isn't any more ambiguity about his record. Lurie said Wednesday, after firing Kelly, that he gave him full control because he "wanted to make Chip accountable for everything he wanted to have happen."
Kelly was the chief architect of the 6-9 Eagles, who finish a doomed season on Sunday at the New York Giants. He deserves no pass for a multitude of mistakes and blind arrogance. But Roseman's fingerprints were still on the team and some of his ill-fated decisions led Kelly to overhaul the roster in the offseason.
It hasn't always been clear which decisions were primarily his, however. Lurie had never spelled out his responsibilities in a way that showed a direct trail. And now, once again, the Eagles owner is heading into the same murky waters.
Asked if Roseman would have a say in personnel, Lurie said that he would "as a collaborator."
Collaboration between personnel and coaching is obvious and a must if any team is to thrive. But someone has to have final say. Someone's name has to be placed above both the good and the bad - drafting a success story like Fletcher Cox or a failure like Marcus Smith.
That way the public doesn't have to take Lurie's word when he exonerated Roseman of the 2010-11 disappointments. His "voluminous notes" will forever be locked in the NovaCare vault. But it has since been reported that Roseman had as much to do with the Nnamdi Asomughas and Danny Watkinses as anyone.
"Howie will be responsible for making sure our player personnel department is as good as it gets in the NFL and be accountable for that," Lurie said.
Lurie said that Tom Donahoe would run the day-to-day player personnel department, but that will be only on an interim basis. The Eagles have begun their search for a second-in-command to Roseman, an NFL source said.
The next coach could affect how Lurie divvies up responsibilities. Perhaps that was why he dodged questions about Roseman's role. The Eagles didn't initially offer Kelly the say over selecting the 53-man roster three years ago. But he bargained for it when he reconsidered.
He was one of approximately eight coaches who had that kind of authority this season, according to NFL Network. If the Eagles want to lure Sean Payton away from the Saints, they would likely have to give him the final say he has in New Orleans.
But that isn't likely with Roseman in place. Fair or not, he will probably drive away some candidates because he doesn't come from a traditional scouting background. Even Lurie, when he was asked in March to explain why Roseman was no longer the GM, said that Kelly was more comfortable working with a "football guy."
There is also the perception, fair or not, that Roseman is difficult to work with. Since he moved from the business side of Eagles operations to the football side, the personnel department has been a revolving door of evaluators with only one man still standing.
Since 2008, when Roseman became vice president of player personnel, the following of equal or higher standing have left the Eagles: Jason Licht, Tom Heckert, Ryan Grigson, Lou Riddick, Joe Banner, Andy Reid, Tom Gamble and, along with Kelly on Tuesday, Ed Marynowitz.
Roseman still hasn't spoken publicly since last January. Requests to interview him in light of the most recent shakeup were declined.
Lurie said that he, team president Don Smolenski, and Roseman would once again head the coaching search. But make no mistake about it: They will follow Roseman's lead. He guided the charge for Kelly.
Bagging Kelly in the 2013 offseason showed that Roseman wasn't as big of an obstacle as some thought. But there could be as many as 10 openings this year and the Eagles lack a franchise-caliber quarterback under contract for next season, unlike several of their competitors.
The roster is a mismatch of talented players who could play in any system, borderline NFL players who fit Kelly's culture/scheme, and evaluation errors made by both Roseman and the coach.
Based on record alone, the Eagles went 42-38 with two playoff losses during Roseman's five years (2010-14) as GM. Cox is the only Associated Press all-pro from the drafts in that span. Of the many free agents, Connor Barwin, Evan Mathis, and Jason Babin were the only all-pros.
Darren Sproles, who came in a trade, also earned all-pro honors. Roseman was best at pulling off the occasional lopsided trade or sometimes getting value in free-agent negotiations. But there wouldn't have been as much need for his business acumen had his drafts been stronger.
Lurie has never completely cleaned house. He has never had a new set of eyes - coach and GM in tandem - look at the roster without prejudice. Roseman is still liable for many of the players on the team, whether we know exactly which ones or not. How will that influence his assessments?
Perhaps he's become better at his job after a year of reflection. Maybe he nets a great coach. And maybe neither happens.
Either way, Lurie needs to define Roseman's role. Everyone gets credit for winning. But failure is an orphan. There's been a lot of the latter over the last decade.