Eagles select Nolan Smith with 30th pick of 2023 NFL Draft

PHILADELPHIA, PA – OCTOBER 14: Eagles General Manager Howie Roseman is pictured prior to the game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Philadelphia Eagles on October 14, 2021 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by John Jones/Icon Sportswire)

On a night that was full of surprises, Howie Roseman wanted to make sure the Eagles fans were given one more before the first round came to an end. The Philadelphia Eagles selected Nolan Smith with their 30th overall selection. That’s right, the same player who felt like a lock to be gone by 10 ended up being selected by the Birds at 30.

The Eagles traded up to secure Jalen Carter, but they didn’t have to move at all for Nolan Smith, who gracefully fell into Howie’s lap at 30. Why? I have absolutely no idea.

Who is Nolan Smith?

Nolan Smith becomes the fourth member of that incredible 2021 Georgia Bulldogs defense to have been drafted by the Eagles in the last 2 years.

Our writer, Mike Greger, had this to say about Smith recently:

Smith is a physical specimen who ran the 40-yard dash in 4.39 seconds at the NFL Scouting Combine. His numbers were off the charts: 41.50″ vertical jump, 10’8″ broad jump, 1.52 10-yard split, all while weighing at 6-foot-2 and 238 pounds. His 40 time compared favorably to NFL receivers DeAndre Hopkins and Stefon Diggs. And his freak athleticism drew comparisons to Haason Reddick.

Smith racked up 7 TFL and 3 sacks in 2022 before suffering a heartbreaking season-ending injury. That clearly didn’t derail his NFL plans, with Smith returning to blow the NFL Combine out of the water. Perhaps it was the injury that scared off teams in the first round. Whatever the case, the Eagles now have FOUR championship-winning Bulldogs on their defense.

Photo by John Jones/Icon Sportswire