So, I've been reading and commenting here for a while and after yesterday's draft I finally decided to write my 1st FanPost. I probably overreacted a bit to the pick and later in the night I thought maybe I'd like it better in the morning. Well it turns out I'm a little less angry about it but I still have mixed feelings. I'll go into the bad first.
The draft falls as well as we all could hope to the Eagles, since Jimmy Smith (future all-pro shutdown corner who everybody and their mother mocked to us) was there at No. 23. I had a bad feeling though that Andy wouldn't take him for a number of reasons. First of all, Andy likes to go against the grain, always doing something different than what the experts predict. It bothers me when he does this because he'd rather get a thrill out of trying to trick everybody than just making the right pick. The second reason I thought they wouldn't pick him is that rumors were flying as the Eagles pick drew closer on Twitter that Smith was off our board and that there was a low chance of Reid making that the pick. I was in shock when they picked Watkins and I was extremely pissed until the Ravens took Smith and I saw him celebrating, which pushed me over the edge and left me with a sick feeling in my stomach for the rest of the night. I'm telling you, red flags and all, Jimmy Smith is going to be a shutdown dominant corner in the mold of Revis and NA (we'll talk about him later). Can't believe he slipped through our fingers like that. In summary, 3 main gripes: Passing on Smith, Watkins' age, and I feel we could've got Watkins later in the draft. And unfortunately Watkins is a Canadian. Anyway, enough of the negative, let's get to the bright side of things.
I couldn't even think straight enough through my anger last night to see how much Watkins can really help this team. This morning I still think we should've went with Smith but I feel a little better about Watkins and here's why. Even though the guy is old as dirt for a rookie (27, and it was my main objection with the pick other than passing on Smith) think about this. We never have to watch at least one of our horrendous guards Fat and Fatter (aka Nick Cole and MJG) start again. This alone makes it a good pick, maybe Vick won't be running for his life now and Shady can run even more effectively than last year. The one benefit of his age however is that he can step in and start immediately to help us this season. As much as I hate to admit it, he is on the complete opposite end of the spectrum on the character scale than Smith. Watkins is a genuine good guy and a former firefighter. If his firefighter buddies coming all the way down from British Columbia to cheer him on at the draft isn't evidence that he's a likeable guy and a team leader, I don't know what is. Another thing I like is he plays with heart and always gives it his all. I know it's a cliche but at least I didn't say high motor. Which to me indicates a lack of talent, and Watkins isn't lacking for talent.
Here's what I think Andy and the Eagles should do on Day 2 of the draft tonight. As many of you have probably noticed, Da'Quan Bowers, mocked just a few weeks ago by many as a top 5 possible first overall pick, is still on the board. The reason he fell is because he has issues with his knee, and we all know the Eagles aren't scared of that. The guy is a perfect 4-3 DE and has the potential to be a force opposite of Cole (who'll be drawing the double teams) and under Washburn he can dominate. I would object to him in the 1st because of the knee problems but he'd be a steal in the 2nd. I know, I know, we already have Brandon Graham. I still like Graham and think he can work out in the future but he won't be back until mid-season and start the season on the PUP list. He will also lose a lot of speed recovering from the Torn ACL, but hopefully he can gain it back eventually. If Graham comes back healthy he and Bowers can rotate with each other and also possibly spell Cole when he's tired. Also let's face it folks, obviously Trent is a beast but he won't last forever and a few years down the road if he declines and we lose him, we'd be set with Graham and Bowers. We'd probably have to trade up to get Bowers but we have plenty of picks later in the draft to use as ammo as well as 2012 picks (some of which we could easily gain back when we trade Kolb, which I will also talk about later). Other targets I'd love the Eagles to trade up for in the 2nd: Akeem Ayers, LB (another need of ours), and Aaron Williams, CB.
Here's what I think the Eagles should do AFTER the draft is all said and done. As we all know free agency and trades could possibly be allowed next Monday. But it depends if the owners and Goodell decided to stall any longer which they probably will. Some people think we will be trading Kolb for Patrick Peterson, Arizona's No. 5 overall pick and a dominant corner. I doubt this will happen but would love if it did. I've heard some rumors that the Eagles are going to trade Kolb for Aldon Smith, who is a DE and the 49ers No. 7 overall pick. I think they way reached on him but it makes sense since SF still needs a QB unless they take Dalton or Mallett today. With Kolb the 49ers become an instant contender, as QB is their biggest hole. I personally HATE this trade because I think we could get much more for Kolb in the form of 2012 picks. Now in free agency we need to go after the big fish, which I have a strong feeling the Eagles will. They have a shit ton of cap room and by picking a 27 year old immediate starting guard, I think Reid has clearly entered win now mode. The proverbial Moby Dick in free agency is of course CB Nnamdi Asomugha of the Raiders (but not for long). The Eagles need to go after him HARD since we passed on an elite CB in the draft and decided to try and fix the offensive line instead. He's arguably the best corner in the NFL (I think he is) but some would argue he is 2nd to Revis. Either way, signing him would make the Eagles one of the instant favorites to win the Super Bowl. Other things to address in the offseason: Signing Vick to longer than a 1 year deal, signing DeSean long term, going after another offensive lineman in free agency to completely shore up the line, and re-signing Mikell.
So, 1st FanPost, let me know how I did. One thing I don't want this to turn into however is an argument over Jimmy Smith and whether the drug problems and red flags are worth it or not. I've heard it many times and I have my opinion, please spare me.