FanPost

AFTER THE FIRST ROUND

Hitting on your first round picks is obviously the quickest way to change the fortunes of your NFL franchise. Missing badly on them is the quickest way to get your ass fired as a GM and then becoming an ever worse college football commentator. Yes, I am staring at you Matt Millen. Here is a list of 10 guys that won’t be picked in the first round but have caught my eye and could be interesting picks for the Eagles. You may not like any of them, but at least I am killing ten minutes of your day while you should be working.

Menelik Watson: Most Eagle fans would love to get Luke Joekel but I doubt he gets by the fat man in Kansas City. This leaves us many choices at the number four spot. One is to trade down and get either Kenny Vaccaro or trade down even farther and take Matt Elam. Those are my two choices since I believe that the safety spot is by far the biggest need, and Elam reminds me the most of a Brian Dawkins. At the top of round two we grab Menelik Watson, giving us both extra picks and what could turn into the best OT in the entire draft. Watson is raw but ultra talented. He is a 6’5 320 pound monster that would have surely been a top 10 pick in the 2014 draft had he stayed his senior season at FSU. Watson shows great quickness and balance when dropping back into pass protection, and has all the physical traits to be effective in the running game. He has tremendous straight line speed and uses this to block defenders at the second level, sometimes as far as 20 yards down the field.

Logan Ryan – The Eagles need help in the secondary badly. I want the Eagles to address the safety position; however there is no denying that they have to address the CB position as well. Logan Ryan might just be the answer. Last year Ryan registered 94 tackles, 4 interceptions and knocked down 18 passes. Ryan has progressed each year he was on campus and has drawn comparisons to Devin McCourty. Ryan posses strong man cover skills and likes to get physical at the line of scrimmage. He has good timing and leaping ability and has experience in zone and man coverage, as well as being a great special teams player. There isn’t a lot to dislike about Ryan except for the fact that he lacks elite speed. If not for this draft being loaded at the top end on the CB position it’s hard to imagine that Ryan wouldn’t be a first round choice. Like Menelik Watson I think you are getting a first round talent, somewhere in the middle of round two.

Cornellius "Tank" Carradine: The Tank was an absolute force for the Seminoles after Brandon Jenkins went down in the first game of the season. He recorded 11 sacks and 13 TFL’s in 12 games before tearing the ACL in his right knee. Tank has quick feet and great closing speed and never took a play off. Tearing his ACL has dropped his stock considerably, considering he was going in the first round in many mock drafts before in the injury. Tank, who was selected First Team All-Atlantic Coast Conference, is thought to be well ahead of schedule rehabbing his injury. He would be a great value pick in the late 2nd or early 3rd round. Tank shows very good footwork to sidestep blockers, and shows very good recognition skills. He needs to get stronger and cut down on the offsides penalties, but overall a great talent to get this far into the draft.

Brandon Jenkins: During his sophomore season Jenkins became a household name leading the Noles defense with 63 tackles, 21.5 TFL’s, and 13.5 sacks in his first starting season. Those numbers regressed in his junior year as teams started to focus on stopping him, leading to the emergence of Bjoern Werner. His senior season promised great things for the defense as the Seminoles were loaded with perhaps three first round talents at DE. Unfortunately his season was cut short with a Lisfranc injury during the team's first game of the year. His length and burst of speed would make him an ideal OLB in a 3-4 alignment. Much like Carradine he was projected to go in the first round before his injury, now most mock drafts have him going in the 2nd or 3rd round.

Baccarri Rambo: As a redshirt sophomore Rambo recorded 82 tackles and 3 interceptions while starting in all 13 games. His play continued to elevate recording 55 tackles, 8 pass break-ups, and a team high 8 interceptions as a junior. His senior season got sidetracked by a failed drug test (four game suspension) but he was still able to finish the season with 67 tackles and 3 interceptions. Rambo is an intuitive defender that locates the ball and gets a good jump on it very well. He shows a good burst and times his leaps and contact with receivers nicely. Has good straight line speed and can play physically without drawing a flag. He is an aggressive tackler however he tends to lead with his shoulder looking for the big hit rather than wrapping up. He is an intimidating presence but needs to become more disciplined.

Tyler Wilson: This year’s QB class is a crapshoot. The guys that I wouldn’t want stand out to me more than the guys that I want. I certainly want no part of Geno Smith, Matt Barkley, and I would drink a gallon of drain-o if the Eagles picked EJ Manuel. Tyler stands out to me as the best of a very average class. Blessed with great arm strength and decent mobility he put up great numbers in the 2011 season completing 63.2 percent of his passes for 3,638 yards and 24 touchdowns against just six interceptions. After his head coach was let go, losing 3 WR’s to the NFL, and a dismal 4-8 season Wilson was still able to put up decent numbers with 3,387 yards, 21 touchdowns and 13 interceptions while completing 62.1 percent of his passes. Wilson had just about everything go wrong that could possibly go wrong and considering he played in the SEC, those numbers look even a bit more impressive.

Corey Lemonier : Lemonier isn’t a household name mostly in part to Auburn’s terrible season, however he was the one bright spot on the team. Projected to be a stand up linebacker in the NFL Lemonier started in his sophomore season posting eye popping numbers (47 tackles, 13.5 tackles for loss and 9.5 sacks). His junior season started out quickly with five sacks over the first four games but as Auburn’s season went into the tank so did Lemonier’s numbers. Known for his excellent speed and ferocious hits, Lemonier has a lot to gain at the NFL combine, currently being projected somewhere in the middle of the draft.

Jon Bostic: Bostic led the Gator’s in tackles in 2011 with 94 but slumped to only 68 in this senior year. Primarily known as a run stuffing inside linebacker he surprised many by intercepting 5 passes and totaling 7.5 sacks during his career as a Gator. Bostic reads the action well, is a sure tackler and is known for his big hits. In pass coverage he understands route development and has excellent ball skills for his position. Due to his physicality he is a natural special teams player and is a vocal team leader. Bostic has all the traits you want in a football player who isn’t blessed with the tools other NFL superstars are. Will probably have to make the team at first as a special teams player as he is projected in the 5th round of the NFL draft. But, you always need more guys like Bostic on your team.

Marcus Lattimore – We all know how good this guy looked when he was healthy, and we all know how gruesome his injury was. The Eagles are deep at the running back position if Bryce Brown learns how to hold on to the ball. What if the 5th round comes around and Lattimore is still on the board? Investing a late round draft pick on a guy that has amazing potential is a risk, but the reward could certainly outweigh it in this case. It’s really hard to make much more of a case for Lattimore considering he doesn’t have "elite" speed and has these kind of durability issues, until you look at his gaudy stats again. In 2010 Lattimore gained over 1,600 all purpose yards and scored 19 TD’s. He followed his amazing freshman season by gaining 1000 all purpose yards and 11 TD’s in just 7 games. After recovering from injury he totalled 835 total yards and 11 TD’s in just 7 full games before injuries derailed his 2012 campaign. Add those numbers up and project at what Lattimore would have gained over the course of 3 full years of college football and the numbers are amazing. Projections would have him at around 5,000 plus all purpose yards and 60 plus TD’s. Lattimore is projected to go in the 4th round but I suspect that some team will gamble on these numbers and take him higher than that.

Tyrann Mathieu: Mathieu is going to make just about every list, whether it’s for the good or the bad. Mathieu is projected to go around the 5th round. Mathieu was a dynamic playmaker at the college level. Whether that transfers to the NFL is debatable considering his size, and the fact that he is more quick than he is fast. In his freshman season he backed up Patrick Peterson and put up great numbers (7 pass break ups, 8.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, 3 fumble recoveries and a pair of interceptions). In 2011 he continued his good play as he led the team with 70 tackles, forced an SEC-best six fumbles and recovered five. He ranked 2nd in the nation with a 16.2 punt return average and earned himself a trip to New York as a finalist for the Heisman Trophy. Multiple failed drug test derailed his 2012 season and made Mathieu a serious risk for any NFL team to draft.

Enjoy the rest of your day!

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