The Philadelphia Eagles are set to host Ohio State running back Ezekiel Elliott on a pre-draft visit. Elliott revealed as much in an interview with NFL Network on Thursday evening.
Elliott is one of 30 prospects scheduled to visit the team's facility in Philadelphia leading up to the 2016 NFL Draft.
The 20-year-old Elliott is considered to be the best running back prospect from this year's class. He's the player most mock drafters have the Eagles taking with the No. 8 overall pick. BGN draft writer Ben Natan argues Elliott is the best overall prospect from this entire class and has him ranked higher than last year's top rookie running back, Todd Gurley. I also made the case for why the Eagles should draft Zeke:
A number of people will say drafting a running back in the first round isn’t a good use of resources, but the truth is Elliott makes a lot of sense for the Eagles. Philadelphia’s offense was abysmal in 2015 and it needs all the help it can get. Elliott provides more value than just merely improving the team’s rushing attack. He’s an excellent blocker. He can also contribute as a receiving weapon. Not to mention that the Eagles have a huge need at running back. It’s hard for them to count on the oft-injured Ryan Mathews and the soon to be 33-year-old Darren Sproles as full-time contributors. Both of those players could be gone after this year. Elliott can be a foundational piece for the Birds moving forward. He’s only 20 years old so the Eagles can get plenty of good years out of him to justify the high pick on a so-called devalued position.
Based on public comments he made at this year's owners meetings, Howie Roseman seems open to the possibility of drafting Elliott in the first round. At the very least, this visit shows they're doing their homework on him.
The Birds have a really big need at running back. They pretty much have to draft a rusher at some point this year. Maybe Zeke will be the guy.
Complete list of knowndraft visits
Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Ohio State
WR Antwane Grant, Western Kentucky (Local visit?)
CB Daryl Worley, West Virginia (Local visit?)