The Eagles took a huge leap yesterday in trading up for the second overall pick in next week’s NFL Draft to add another Quarterback to the roster. The trade up means that the birds now only have one pick in the third round and no picks in the fourth next week. With plenty of holes remaining and only six picks to work with, it’s crucial that the Eagles make every pick count.
So how does the blockbuster trade impact the rest of the Draft for the Eagles? Hopefully this Mock Draft will clear things up
Round 1: QB Carson Wentz
The Eagles traded up to draft a future franchise Quarterback and with the Rams leaning towards Jared Goff it seems almost certain that the Eagles will land NDSU’s Carson Wentz. Wentz has all the fundamentals to be successful in the NFL but there’s plenty of mystery surrounding the 6’5 signal caller.
I’ve spoken extensively about why trading up for Wentz is a lot riskier than many think, but the Eagles have obviously seen enough positives to believe he has the ability to become “the guy”. The Wentz debate will likely rage on for months to come, but as far as the Draft goes, it’s clear the Eagles love what they see and all the signs are pointing towards Wentz sitting behind Sam Bradford next season.
Round 3: OT Kyle Murphy
With Wentz onboard, it’s important to start fortifying the pick. In College, Wentz played behind an Offensive Line that averaged just over one sack allowed per game and a line that helped the team finish first in the conference in rushing yards after running the ball 60% of the time.
If the Eagles truly believe Wentz is the guy, they have to start building a fortress for him to play behind. With the long term future of Jason Peters insecure and backup tackles entering their final season, the Eagles would be wise to add a talent like Stanford’s Kyle Murphy.
A dominant pass protector, Murphy may not be the most athletic Tackle in his class, but his prototypical frame and ability to push opposing Defenders backwards to create holes make him the perfect pick for a team who need depth, talent and more than anything a solid pick with their only third round pick after trading the other to Cleveland.
Round 5: ILB Blake Martinez
Whilst the direction of this Draft is clearly an Offensive one, it wouldn’t hurt to add some versatility and depth at the Linebacker position. The Stanford Linebacker has an impressive frame and displays great agility and athleticism and after ending his 2015 season the most tackles in the PAC-12 Conference, Martinez could be the perfect rotational and developmental piece in a fresh and aggressive system.
He may not have the perfect frame for an ILB, but his speed and agility make him the perfect man to plug holes, shed blocks and most importantly stop the run. Drafting an established run stopper after conceding the most rushing yards in the league could be the perfect compliment to a Linebacker corps that promises to be among the most exciting to watch in the league.
Round 5: RB Daniel Lasco
Lasco could be a steal if he falls to the fifth round. After being outshone by Quarterback Jared Goff and seeing his numbers drop massively, Lasco could well become the ultimate sleeper for a team looking to build a committee backfield once again. The Eagles worked out the Cal running back a few weeks ago and after trading up for a Quarterback have almost guaranteed that they will look to employ a communal backfield as Pederson did in the absence of Jamaal Charles with the Chiefs last season.
Lasco isn’t a DeMarco Murray power runner, nor is he as elusive as Ryan Mathews, but his ability to burst through the trenches and bounce to the outside could make him the perfect compliment to a backfield looking for consistency , versatility and unpredictability. Three traits that Lasco boasts whenever he touches the ball.
Round 6: WR Chris Moore
Competition seems to be the theme moving forward for the Eagles. Almost every major position (QB, RB, WR, CB, LB) has starting roles up for grabs and arguably one of the most exciting position battles to watch develop through the pre-season will be Wide-Receiver.
The Eagles are still looking for a bonafide deep threat and the 6’1 Cincinnati touchdowns scored record holder may be the perfect catalyst to spark the fire. He has great speed and catches the ball away from his body which is something the Eagles could benefit from massively. His speed means he can generate separation with ease and when partnered with crisp route running, Moore becomes a lethal deep target.
During his final two years with Cincinnati, Moore received for 1,543 yards and 15 touchdowns on 70 receptions. He achieved all of this in 24 games.
He also possesses the versatility to line up in the slot, on the inside or on the outside..making him a perfect rotational receiver in Pederson’s West-Coast Hybrid Offense.
Moore may not emerge as a starter in his first season, but he certainly has enough potential to develop into the deep threat that the Eagles need.
Round 7: CB Brandon Williams
A former Oklahoma running back, Williams has all the athletic ability needed to not only keep up with some of the biggest receivers in the league, but the confidence to challenge the ball at its highest point and drive through his tackles. Not only can Williams run a 4.34 40-yard dash, but has an impressive 30’5 vertical.
Williams isn’t the most polished corner here and his lack of experience and knowledge of how to play the position is worrying. However under Jim Schwartz, this raw athletic talent and aggressive demeanour could develop into a solid backup corner
Round 7: DT Vincent Valentine
With Jim Schwartz implementing such an aggressive Defensive scheme, depth on the line with the Eagles final pick in the draft wouldn’t be the worst idea. Valentine is a 329 pound lineman who shows surprising amounts of athleticism. Powerful, dominant and racking up 45 tackles in his final season with Nebraska, Valentine is a perfect run stopper..another piece to help reinforce what was one of the Eagles’ biggest problems in 2015.
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