Howie Roseman answered questions for the media on Monday. Of the answers he gave the Eagles beat writers, one quote really stuck out. Roseman told Philly.com that "the most important question we ask, whether it's our scouts or myself or our coaches is: Three years from now, what is this player gong to be?" He followed that up by saying "we look at this draft - at every draft - as a long-term decision for our football team. So just because a player may be better in year one, he better also be better in year three, four, five, and so on from that." It may come off as white noise or generic dialogue but it likely speaks to the team's outlook on this particular class.
The quotes from the Eagles general manager tell us a few things. For one, the team is concerned just as much with potential as it is production. Second, it says the team is keeping an open mind when it comes to talent that may be still learning their position or how to play football in general. This is important to take under consideration because of this specific class, which features several players that are new to their position and some that are even new to the sport.
Offensive tackles Lane Johnson (Oklahoma) and Eric Fisher (Central Michigan) along with outside linebacker, Oregon's Dion Jordan, are all former tight ends that were converted to their current positions within the last two few years and are still grasping the concepts of their jobs. BYU's Ziggy Ansah, FSU's Bjoern Werner and SMU's Margus Hunt all just started playing football in their late-teens and in college (Werner played in Europe and late into high school). Other guys like Oregon's Kyle Long, FSU's Xavier Rhodes and Syracuse's Justin Pugh all may have to adjust to different positions at the next level. All three categories fit into the "looking toward the future" approach that Roseman says the team is taking with the draft.
Add in the fact that most analysts have mentioned that the quarterbacks from this class will likely have to sit, and the Eagles have left their options open. It seems the team is rebuilding without having to mention the obvious. It also likely speaks to the team's desire to build a winner as oppose to manufacturing one, a lesson Roseman and owner, Jeff Lurie, likely learned during the 2009 offseason.
Like it or not, the team is likely to take on some projects.