Bleeding Green Nation polled readers last week to determine which position on the Philadelphia Eagles roster is in need of the biggest upgrade heading into the 2015 NFL Draft. The results:
Safety - 43%
Wide receiver - 23%
Offensive line - 16%
Cornerback - 9%
Quarterback - 8%
The Eagles shouldn't necessarily be desperate to draft for need, but it's certainly a factor. It feels like the Eagles have to address safety at some point considering there is no clear starting option next to Malcolm Jenkins. Wide receiver and offensive line are also in need of attention.
Here's a look at some potential draft targets for the Birds. NFL Network's Mike Mayock recently released his updated list of the top players at each position.
1. Landon Collins, Alabama
2. Shaq Thompson, Washington
3. Damarious Randall, Arizona State
4. Quinten Rollins, Miami (Ohio)
5. Alex Carter, Stanford
For what it's worth, Collins is the clear No. 1 safety in the eyes of most draft analysts. It remains to be seen if teams feel the same way. The Alabama defensive back doesn't seem to fit what the Eagles value in their defensive backs due concerns about his coverage skills. Elsewhere, Mayock still lists Thompson as a safety despite teams working him out as a linebacker. Randall has been praised for his coverage skills but there are questions about his ability to play the run. Mayock didn't list Penn State's Adrian Amos among his top options.
1. Kevin White, West Virginia
2. Amari Cooper, Alabama
3. DeVante Parker, Louisville
4. Breshad Perriman, Central Florida
T-5. Dorial Green-Beckham, Missouri
T-5. Nelson Agholor, USC
The Eagles likely won't have a shot at the top three names on this list unless they traded up, which seems unlikely. Perriman might be a guy the Eagles like due to his size and speed combination. He's not exactly the most polished prospect but he's intriguing. I would doubt the Eagles have much interest in Green-Beckham due to character concerns, but Agholor could be in the mix due to the attention they've shown in him.
Interior offensive linemen
1. Brandon Scherff, Iowa
2. Cameron Erving, Florida State
3. Laken Tomlinson, Duke
4. A.J. Cann, South Carolina
5. Tre' Jackson, Florida State
1. La'el Collins, LSU
2. Ereck Flowers, Miami (Fla.)
3. D.J. Humphries, Florida
4. Andrus Peat, Stanford
T-5. T.J. Clemmings, Pittsburgh
T-5. Cedric Ogbuehi, Texas A&M
I would think the plan for the Eagles is to draft a tackle who can play guard as opposed to "just" a guard. This way the rookie could fill an immediate need on the interior while filling a future need at tackle. Collins has drawn interest from the Eagles. Philadelphia seems to want to get bigger on the offensive line in order to assist their power running game.
1. Trae Waynes, Michigan State
2. Jalen Collins, LSU
3. Marcus Peters, Washington
4. Kevin Johnson, Wake Forest
T-5. Eric Rowe, Utah
T-5. Byron Jones, Connecticut
Of these players, Jones and Johnson make the most sense as Eagles targets. Collins has the size Philadelphia likes but he's raw and inexperienced. Rowe might interest the Eagles more as a safety, but perhaps they like him at cornerback.
1. Marcus Mariota, Oregon
2. Jameis Winston, Florida State
3. Bryce Petty, Baylor
4. Garrett Grayson, Colorado State
5. Brett Hundley, UCLA
Marcus Mariota. Need I say more?