Ever since the Eagles drafted Brandon Graham, I've heard comparisons that he is a lot like Dwight Freeney and Elvis Dumervil, guys that are shorter than your typical DE's, that possess impressive repertoires of pass rushing moves and non-stop "motors." In fact, Graham has embraced those comparisons, as he watches tape of other pass rushers that have a similar physical stature, including Dumervil (his favorite), Freeney, LaMarr Woodley, and Trent Cole.
The comparisons that Graham has drawn got me thinking... Who do our other rookies remind me of? Obviously, we're only two preseason games, a full camp at Lehigh, and a couple OTA's deep now, and we've only gotten our first glimpses at the 13 Eagles draft picks, but just for fun I thought we could draw comparisons of our own with our other rookies.
Disclaimer - These are just fun comparisons, so take them for what they're worth (very little). I'll start it off with the following 3 rooks...
Nate Allen - Reminds me of Nick Collins, Green Bay Packers. Like Allen, Collins was a 2nd round pick (51st overall), and started from day one in the NFL, much like Nate Allen is expected to do. Collins has great range, and is known for his ability in coverage. He is an intelligent, mature player that looked like he "belonged" right away in the NFL.
Ha, just kidding. Let's try that again...
Riley Cooper - Reminds me of Muhsin Muhammad, retired (most notably of the Carolina Panthers). Muhammad was a huge target, and was always one of the most physical wide receivers in the league with a bit of a mean streak. He also had sneaky speed, despite his large frame. But my favorite aspect of his game was his blocking. Hines Ward often got credit for being the best blocking WR in the game, but I think he was just more memorable because a lot of those blocks were dirty. For my money, give me Muhammad as the best blocker in the NFL any day of the week. I see a lot of Muhammad's traits in Cooper, except of course for the surfer look.
Keenan Clayton - Reminds me of Thomas Howard, Oakland Raiders. Howard is an undersized outside linebacker whose game is all about speed. He's very good in pass coverage, and in 2007, he picked off 6 passes and returned 2 of those for TD's. I think the Eagles are looking for Clayton to bring that kind of dynamic playmaking ability to Philly. So far Clayton has been very impressive, as he picked off a pass vs. Cincinnati and had an impressive athletic sack against the Jags.
Who do the rest of the Eagles' rooks remind you of?