The second day of the 2015 NFL Draft is finalized and the Philadelphia Eagles have now added a total of three new prospects to their roster. After selecting wide receiver Nelson Agholor on Day 1, the Eagles' Day 2 picks were both defenders: cornerback/safety Eric Rowe of Utah and linebacker Jordan Hicks of Texas.
For what it's worth, Eagles fans really seemed to like the Rowe pick. The newest Philadelphia defensive back earned a 97% approval rating. Hicks, however, only finished with a rating of 56%.
Now that we've barely had much time to fully digest the picks it's definitely time for everyone's favorite pointless activity: draft grades!
I'll give the Eagles an "A" for the Rowe pick and a "B-" for the Hicks decision. The Rowe trade was really good value because they didn't give up too much and still got their guy. The Hicks pick wasn't a reach by definition considering the Bengals wanted him one pick after the Eagles, but Philadelphia has a logjam at the inside linebacker position that they need to figure out. It was a little surprising to see Philly select no offensive linemen. There's still time for that on Day 3, however.
See below for more hot takes and reviews from around the web.
SB Nation - (B)
The Eagles may not have been able to make the blockbuster move at the top of the draft, but Chip Kelly played his first two picks smart. Rowe will be an impact player in the secondary. Agholor was a good choice in the first. Hicks, a blue-chip high school recruit, came off the board a little earlier than expected. His issue has been staying healthy.
CBS Sports - (Rowe = A+ ... Hicks = B-)
He is one of the most versatile defensive backs in the draft. To go up and get him is a heck of a move by Chip Kelly. I think he can be a star safety, but a lot of scouts love him as a corner.
This is a kid who went to Texas with a ton of talent but had some injury issues. He has the ability to be a good player if he can stay healthy in Philadelphia.
Poor Agholor will have the distinction of being "Not Marcus Mariota" in Philly, but that doesn't matter. He'll be a great fit for Chip Kelly's offensive system. His return game is not to be underestimated either, and he's a picture-perfect replacement for Jeremy Maclin. Don't be surprised if he has the most catches of any rookie wideout next season. Rowe brings great coverage skills, and as a bonus, he can play both safety and corner. Hicks could turn out to be a quality player if he can stay healthy.
NJ.com (Rowe = B+ ... Hicks = C)
Speaking to the media late last month, Marynowitz said the Eagles had a few cornerbacks on their board that they viewed as versatile enough to play safety, and Rowe fits that description. A three-year safety at Utah, Rowe spent his fourth season in college at cornerback. Kelly spoke at length at the versatility Rowe will bring to the Eagles' defense. More than anything, the Eagles needed to come out of this draft with playmakers in the secondary, and Rowe is their first attempt at doing do. He checks all of the boxes on the Eagles' list, as he has good size, long arms, is physical, versatile and fits their scheme. If he can play, Rowe could be the missing piece to truly turnaround a secondary that has been one of the worst in the league the past two seasons.
Bleacher Report (Rowe = B ... Hicks = C+)
Hicks is a good defender with a long injury history. The 2012 and 2013 seasons were basically a wash for him, but he was a productive in-space linebacker in 2014 and looked pretty good in the Senior Bowl. Once you have committed to Sam Bradford as your quarterback, the thought of losing two full seasons to injuries no longer seems all that frightening.