First things first. We trade our third round pick to the 49ers for Alex Smith. This is a no-brainer trade. Smith is a perfect fit to run Kelly's offense and a third rounder is a fair price for both sides.
Another addition they will make is signing Jared Cook. He is an unrestricted free agent who seems to have "no future in Tennessee". He is an athletic guy that can create some major matchup problems. Kelly will realize what he has and use him like Tennessee continuously failed to do.
Lastly, I think the Eagles sign Terrance Knighton. Knighton played for the Jaguars last year and lost his starting job at DT in the middle of the season. He's a big body and should provide some needed size in the middle for us.
Now let's get to the draft.
First things first, we trade back from pick four. Trade our pick to the Titans who move up in order to draft Dee Milliner, CB from Alabama. We trade pick 4 for picks 10 and 40.
At pick #10, the Philadelphia Eagles select Dion Jordan.
Here are my thoughts on him from a previous Fanpost of mine:
"Jordan has rare size standing at 6'7 and 241 pounds. He is a tremendous athlete who was initially recruited as a top ten tight end recruit in the nation. An interesting story to note: Jordan didn't play in his senior year in high school because of a home fire that left him with second or third degree burns over almost half of his body. Jordan is currently recovering from a torn labrum which he recently had surgery on.
Jordan obviously has tremendous length and should translate well to the 3-4 linebacker position in the NFL after playing a hybrid role at Oregon. Like Mingo, Jordan is not afraid to pop somebody. Has solid speed which he complements with impressive short-area quickness (especially for a 6'7 guy like himself). He has solid moves as a pass rusher but my favorite attribute that he possesses is his willingness to stick his shoulder into a lead blocker to free up other defenders. This attribute is very, very important and has been preached by great linebacker coaches like Mike Singletary for years. This attribute right here is very much responsible for the great linebacker that Ray Lewis has become, a trait that was passed down from his LB coach, Singletary.
NFL.com believes that Jordan needs to add more upper body strength which I am sure that he will develop as the years go by. They also state that he is susceptible to cut blocks (probably due to his height) but that's an expense that you're willing to take because his length is bringing back some big-time revenue (accounting major...had to do it).
Another thing that I love about Jordan is his covering ability. At Oregon, he would often line up against slot receivers and tight ends. That's a special dude. Jordan should turn out to be a stud in the NFL. NFL.com compares him to Julian Peterson. I like the comparison. There aren't many players that have succeeded at linebacker with Jordan's size;but I don't see that being a reason to not take Jordan. His size is elite when complemented by his athleticism."
I expect Jordan to come in at start at the SAM position for us right away. His coverage abilities will be a major addition to our defense.
At pick #35, the Eagles select my boy, Jordan Poyer.
This quote comes from our own Dan Klausner:
"I wrote about Poyer in early December after watching three of his 2012 games (BYU, Wisconsin, Oregon) and liking what I saw. Tremendous ball skills, the best of any corner in this draft. His ability to turn and locate the ball while running with wide receivers is noteworthy; it's a crucial skill that many NFL cornerbacks don't possess, and it's something Poyer continually showed during practice at the Senior Bowl. Combine that with the aforementioned ball skills, and you've got a weapon at the cornerback position (he does need to put on weight, though). Poyer made a gorgeous play late in the Senior Bowl, sticking with the receiver, getting his hand on the ball -- a low throw -- maybe a foot off the turf, deflecting it up in the air and into the waiting hands of Will Davis."
Drafting Poyer has been a common theme in my mocks so far. I really like this guy. He should start right away and for a long time to come.
At pick #40, the Eagles select Matt Elam from Florida.
The pick here would have been Jonathan Cyprien but he think he ends up going in the first round. Elam lasts till the second solely because of his height.
Here are Steve Muench's thoughts on Elam from ESPN:
"Elam projects as a second-round pick and his LSU tape is an example of what makes him the second-ranked safety on our board. While he is on the shorter side for a safety prospect, his compact 207-pound frame and above-average closing speed translate into power as a tackler. He flies around with no fear and makes the most of it. Early in that LSU game he fills from the high slot and thumps 223-pound RB Spencer Ware, holding him to a 1-yard gain. His effort and passion for the game also stand out on that tape. He covers punts with great energy and his ripping the ball out of WR Odell Beckham’s hands 56 yards downfield is the kind of play that would make any defensive coach proud. It’s also worth noting that character is a word that comes up a lot during the draft process and understandably so; character issues have derailed plenty of talented players. Elam had two alcohol-related incidents at Florida and he can do a better job of controlling his emotions on the field at times. Even so, character appears to be one of his strengths at this point in the process. A 2012 team captain, he’s reportedly matured. He’s had to overcome several family tragedies along the way, and most importantly, he loves the game. If you are wondering why he doesn’t project as a first-round pick, the biggest reason may be his cover skills. While he is a playmaker, he’s not as fluid as Texas’ Kenny Vaccaro and he’s going to have a tough time matching up with quicker slot receivers"
Elam reminds me of Bob Sanders. I think he will start for us right away at the strong safety position.
With pick #67, the Philadelphia Eagles select Bacarri Rambo from Georgia
Another safety. Yes, that's right. This is a very deep draft for safety and I think the Eagles will take advantage of it.
According to Rob Rang of CBS he "COMPARES TO: Dashon Goldson, FS, San Francisco 49ers: Like the 49ers' standout free safety, Rambo has a tendency to make splashy plays as a pass thief and intimidating hitter but is prone to an occasional breakdown. If he can tighten up his game (and his off-field decision-making) Rambo has the talent to earn Pro Bowl consideration, just as Goldson has done for the 49ers."
NFL.com compares him to Gerald Sensabaugh.
I like Rambo a lot. He's a great hitter and has very good instincts in coverage. He's a team player. He actually began his career at Georgia as the scout team QB. He worked his way up to starting every game as a sophomore and never backed down. First round talent that had some issues off the field.
In 2011, "his son was delivered stillborn about 10 days before the due date. He decided to play through the grief, and wound up intercepting two passes in a 27-13 win at Ole Miss. Rambo dedicated that game, and the rest of his Associated Press first-team All-American and consensus first-team All-SEC junior season (eight interceptions, eight pass break-ups), to Braylin, the son he never got to know. Rambo’s senior season did not get off to a great start. He started off the season suspended for failing a drug test. However, in the 10 games that he did play, Rambo made an impact. He totaled 73 tackles, intercepted 3 passes, and forced 3 fumbles. Even though his suspension shortened his season, Rambo was still named to the All-SEC second-team." (NFL.com)
The guy clearly has had a rough life up to this point and definitely made some bad decisions. I think we can really get a great player here in the third round and help this guy get his life back on track.
With the 98th pick the Eagles select Nico Johnson, LB from Alabama.
This is NFL.com's bottom line on the guy "A tough-nosed, assignment-sure linebacker, Johnson is a strong run defender who has been overshadowed as a part-time starter on a star-studded Alabama defense. However, his unselfish play has been noticed, and he will likely be a mid-round selection for a 34 team in need of a middle linebacker."
Johnson is a lunch pail guy. He works very hard and does his job. He could be the perfect fit for the Eagles at the MIKE LB position. This could allow the Eagles to dish Demeco Ryans for someone of value (maybe a RT).
With the 129th pick the Eagles select, Hugh Thornton from Illinois.
This guy had a rough childhood. His parents got divorced. His mom and sister were murdered, leaving him to live with his abusive father. Thornton is a tall guy for an interior offensive lineman, but I think he can come in and compete right away at the RG spot. NFL.com compares him to Kevin Boothe.
With the 194th pick the Eagles select Marquess Wilson from Washington State.
Wilson is a bit of an odd-ball. I don't know too much about him. I know that he quit the team his senior year because his coaches were "abusive". He has all kinds of records at the school and is deceptively fast. He's definitely worth a shot in the seventh round. He could play his way into being the fourth of fifth receiver for us.
In conclusion the Eagles draft would look like this:
Oh and some highlights to add some excitement. If you want game film just youtube it. I'm showing highlights to get you pumped up
10. Dion Jordan SAM from Oregon
35. Jordan Poyer CB from Oregon State
40. Matt Elam SS from Florida
67. Bacarri Rambo FS from Georgia
98. Nico Johnson MIKE from Alabama
No highlight video for my boy Nico :(
129. Hugh Thornton OG from Illinois
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gl3W508MQ2c (just a one on one interview kinda thing)
194. Marquess Wilson WR from Washington State
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rdh5zP9JCPo (I'd just like to point out that Wilson blew up Oregon his soph and jr seasons)
And now notable players at each position...not a depth chart
At WR: Desean and Maclin are finally used to their full potential as athletes. Cooper and Avant step in and provide quality production when given the opportunity. Wilson makes the team as a 5th receiver.
At TE: Jared Cook steals the job away from Brent Celek. Celek stays as the number two tight end.
OL: Peters comes back and starts every game at LT. Mathis keeps doing his thing at LG. Kelce comes back healthy and starts at center in another system that fits him well. Hugh Thornton battles it out with Danny Watkins for the starting RG spot and I think Watkins finally comes into his own and does well. RT is all Herremans again.
Elephant: Brandon Graham starts with Trent Cole and Vinny Curry getting looks. Trent Cole stays with the team.There is a 0 percent chance that he is cut. If cut, we would lose 6 million dollars in dead money.
At strongside DT, I think Knighton gets the nod. He's a big body at nearly 340 pounds and will eat up double teams for us. I think Mike Patterson gets cut saving us a pretty penny. I think we see Jenkins/Thornton here on obvious passing downs.
At weakside DT, Fletcher Cox will be a three down player. Needless to say this guy is an absolute stud and this position fits him perfectly.
At SAM, rookie Dion Jordan steps in and starts right away. Jordan is a stud and should help up cover TEs and RBs. Jamar Chaney will back him up.
At MIKE, I think Demeco Ryans gets the starting spot. I do, however think that he will be dealt at sometime in the near future...maybe after next year for some value. If Herremans or our starting RG struggle I could see that move being more imminent where we deal Ryans for an OL. This would put Nico Johnson at starting MIKE, a move that I am comfortable with.
At WILL, Mychal Kendricks gets the start and puts on a show.
At Cornerback, the Eagles don't sign DRC. He's going to want too much money and hasn't played up to his potential yet in green. I think Nnamdi will accept a pay cut and stay with us providing the only veteran leadership in the secondary. Across from him will be Jordan Poyer, CB from Oregon State. They will form a very solid secondary along with Brandon Boykin in the Nickel spot.
At safety, two rookies start. At SS Matt Elam provides some tenacity while Rambo steps in and takes over center-field. Both guys have first round talent and I think we finally have a secondary we can trust.
Notes: Clearly, I have us having a very strong defensive draft. Defense is going to go through a lot of changes and we don't necessarily have great personnel for any defense (because our secondary sucks), let alone the 4-3 under that we just switched to. After free agency and my draft, I really think we would fill all our holes and have an absolutely nasty defense. The most dominant run stuffing team we've had in years along with a trustworthy secondary that we haven't had since the Sheldon Asante era.