clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Eagles News: Philadelphia got two first-round steals in the 2023 NFL Draft

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 4/28/23.

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

2023 NFL Draft - Round 1 Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images

Let’s get to the Philadelphia Eagles links ...

The best steals from night one of the 2023 NFL Draft - SB Nation
Jalen Carter, DT, Georgia — No. 9 (Philadelphia Eagles). Just Howie Roseman doing Howie Roseman things. The night began with word that the Philadelphia Eagles and the Arizona Cardinals had swapped a few selections in the draft, after an investigation into tampering regarding the hiring of new Arizona head coach Jonathan Gannon. But the Eagles, who entered the first round with a pair of selections (at No. 10 and at No. 30) were not done making moves. Philadelphia then moved up from the tenth-overall selection one spot to No. 9, adding talented defensive tackle Jalen Carter. [...] Carter left Indianapolis to respond to the charges. He eventually pled no contest to charges of reckless driving and racing. Things did not improve for him at Georgia’s Pro Day, where he showed up having gained weight, and struggled with cramping before shutting down his workout. The result? Carter, who was at one point coming off the board in the top spot in mock drafts, was sliding out of the top five. Roseman stopped that slide on Thursday night, and you can see why when you watch Carter on film. Now think of what this Georgia ... excuse me ... Eagles defense will look like next season. With Jordan Davis reunited with Carter on the interior, and Nakobe Dean prowling behind them. That Georgia defense was one of the best in recent memory. Replicating that at the NFL level seems like smart business. [...] Nolan Smith, EDGE, Georgia — No. 30 (Philadelphia Eagles) Well, it seems that Howie Roseman has an idea of how to build a defense. Which is to move the Georgia Bulldogs to the City of Brotherly Love. As noted above, the Eagles added Jalen Carter to their defense early on Thursday night. Then as the night drew to a close, they dipped into those Bulldog waters once more, adding Nolan Smith. Smith was one of the pass rushers I enjoyed watching most this draft season, with his combination of pass-rushing moves, explosiveness off the edge, and athleticism. He also had an absolutely incredible Combine, with testing numbers that rivaled many recent wide receiver prospects. His profile put him on the same plane as another explosive pass rusher.

NFL Draft 2023: Best remaining available players entering Day 2 - BGN
The first day of the NFL 2023 NFL Draft is in the books! It was a pretty exciting one for the Philadelphia Eagles. With 31 picks made in the first round, there are still tons of very good players still on the board. Here are the best remaining available players left.

2023 Draft Edition: BGN Instant Reaction Show: Eagles select DT Jalen Carter with 9th pick! - BGN Radio
Jessica Taylor, John Stolnis and Ben Natan share their raw reactions to the Philadelphia Eagles selecting Georgia DT Jalen Carter with the 9th pick overall. They also praised Howie Roseman and predicted what they think the Birds will do with the 30th pick.

Jalen Carter is Philly Bound - Dawg Sports
I’ve never talked to anyone affiliated with Bulldog football who said Jalen Carter isn’t an exemplary teammate. I’ve also never talked to anyone who said he isn’t a force of nature on the football field. An All-SEC first team selection by both coaches and league media in 2022, Carter was perhaps the best player on the 2021 defense that included five 2022 first round picks. At 6’3, 300 pounds Carter isn’t impressively massive. But he’s phenomenally strong, deceptively quick, and when he’s on is one of the most unstoppable defenders in recent SEC recollection. Carter will reunite with former teammates Jordan Davis and Nakobe Dean on a Green Terror defense that has recently taken on a decidedly red and black hue. This is now an Eagles blog I guess.

Nolan Smith and the No-lose Draft Strategy - Dawg Sports
As a pass rusher, Smith is ruthlessly efficient, taking the shortest path to the quarterback and getting there in part due to a quick first step and a high motor. In fact one can get the impression that his pass rush repertoire is a bit limited because he doesn’t flash it often. But again, his tape is replete with examples of Smith using leverage to just bust straight through 300 pound tackles. Some teams will not be sure exactly what they want Smith to do, and I think it might take some time to figure it out. But Nolan Smith’s football IQ, work ethic, and proven productiveness make him a pretty sure bet in this draft. While he may not have the over-the-top measurables of Travon Walker, the kind that force teams to draft you higher due to pure upside, Smith is the kind of player who should be available in the middle third of the first round and isn’t going to lose any GM his job. I expect a team that is looking to build a defense for the long run to snag him between picks 8 and 18, and they’re very unlikely to regret it. Until later…

2023 NFL draft: Mel Kiper’s Round 1 winners, reaches, value picks - ESPN+
The picks: Jalen Carter, DT, Georgia (No. 9); Nolan Smith, OLB, Georgia (No. 30). Wow! The rich get richer. Philadelphia moved up one spot, trading Chicago a 2024 fourth-round pick, to get the No. 1 overall prospect on my Big Board. The Eagles are going to reunite Carter with former Georgia teammate Jordan Davis — the two formed an outstanding interior duo in 2021. I love this pick. This team has the locker-room leadership to make sure Carter stays on track and plays to his potential. Then the Eagles added another Bulldog late, getting my 12th-ranked player at No. 30. Smith missed half of the 2022 season because of a torn pectoral muscle, but he has rare physical tools. He flies off the edge. I thought he’d go much higher. Philly is putting together a defense filled with national champions — it also picked up linebacker Nakobe Dean last year. This is a great start for the Eagles.

The First Read: Winners and losers from Round 1 of the 2023 NFL Draft -
3) Howie Roseman, GM, Philadelphia Eagles: The Eagles were supposed to be in a tough spot when last season ended in a loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LVII. It doesn’t look so bad right now, largely because Roseman continues to make killer moves. Philadelphia did lose some key players from the team that won the 2022 NFC title, but the trade up to nab Georgia defensive tackle Jalen Carter with the ninth pick was huge. Philadelphia can now pair him with his former college teammate, Jordan Davis, and still be giddy about the potential of a defensive line that was a crucial part of this team’s success. And if that wasn’t good enough, Carter’s other college teammate, edge rusher Nolan Smith, was still there for the Eagles to snap up with the 30th overall pick. Roseman already was having a pretty good offseason, because he held onto both his starting cornerbacks (Darius Slay and James Bradberry) and a veteran leader (edge rusher Brandon Graham), with young replacements ready to step in for those who departed in free agency (Davis at defensive tackle and yet another Georgia product, Nakobe Dean, at linebacker). Oh, yeah, Roseman also worked out an extension with All-Pro quarterback Jalen Hurts that gives the franchise much-needed flexibility in roster-building moving forward. The Eagles will face all the typical challenges that come with being defending NFC champs next season. What won’t be in question is whether they’ll have enough talent to chase another shot at the Super Bowl.

Winners and Losers of the First Round of the 2023 NFL Draft - The Ringer
The Philadelphia Eagles have hit on a strategy so simple that 31 other teams should’ve figured it out: What if we just take all the players from the most dominant defense in college football history? In the 2022 NFL draft, Philly took two players from the 2022 College Football Playoff national champion Georgia Bulldogs: defensive tackle Jordan Davis and linebacker Nakobe Dean. And so far in 2023, Philly has taken two players from the 2023 national champion Georgia Bulldogs: defensive tackle Jalen Carter and edge rusher Nolan Smith. The Eagles were in the Super Bowl last year, but had the 10th pick in the draft as the result of a trade with the Saints last season. On Thursday, they decided to give up a fourth-rounder to trade with Chicago to move up from 10 to 9 … and I don’t think they’re going to miss the fourth-rounder, because they got Carter, who was regarded by some draft analysts as the best prospect in the draft (he was fifth on The Ringer’s Big Board). Carter’s stock fell over the course of a draft season in which he showed up to his pro day overweight, and pleaded no contest to reckless driving and racing charges for his actions on the night of a January car crash that killed his Georgia teammate Devin Willock and a Georgia football staffer. But anybody who has watched college football the last two years knows that Carter is a force of nature. I will never be able to get this play, where he picked up LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels with one hand, out of my head. I’m told he was also good on all of his other plays, but I only ever think about the one where he picked up an opposing quarterback with one hand. When the Eagles were on the clock again at no. 30, they picked Smith, 14th on The Ringer’s Big Board. Philadelphia now has four players from a Bulldogs defense that allowed just 10.2 points per game when Carter, Smith, Davis, and Dean were together in 2021. Maybe the Eagles can learn something from the Dawgs and win back-to-back (NFC) championships.

Dawg Day - Iggles Blitz
Okay, so if Smith is so great, how did he last to 30? I think size is a key issue. Reddick hit free agency last March and wasn’t highly sought after. This list had him 24th, after guys like DE Randy Gregory and OL James Daniels. Pass rushers that are 6-2, 240 just aren’t coveted by all 32 teams. The Eagles signed Reddick and he was great. As the draft moved closer to pick 30, I didn’t see many teams where Smith felt like a great fit. I started to think he just might make it. Thankfully he did. To be fair, there were also runs on OL, WRs and TEs. That certainly helped. It was also nice of Detroit to take LB Jack Campbell and RB Jahmyr Gibbs in the Top 20. Maybe there were other concerns with Smith. Most people had him pegged to go in the 10 to 20 range. I never saw anyone projecting him to fall to 30. Smith gives the Eagles incredible depth at edge rusher.

Grading the pick: Eagles stay put at No. 30, draft Georgia’s Nolan Smith - The Athletic
As Bo outlined, Smith is unique. You can’t find edge rushers who ran 4.38 seconds and jumped 41 1/2 inches — that type of athleticism is unprecedented at the position. There are reservations that I imagine teams had because of his size, although look at Reddick. Look at Micah Parsons. Pass rushers don’t need to be 255 pounds if they’re that quick around the edge. It’s reasonable to wonder why there wasn’t more production, although that’s been the case for Georgia pass rushers for a decade. Look at how many players reached double-digit sacks in Kirby Smart’s Georgia defense — there hasn’t been one. When considering advanced data such as sack rate and pressure rate, it’s clear that Smith can disrupt the quarterback. He’s also powerful enough to take on blockers in the running game and has experience dropping when needed. Smith was limited to eight games last season, missing six because of a pectoral injury. (Roseman said there are no medical concerns.) What does his sack total look like had he played those six games? Where’s his draft stock in that situation? Perhaps the athletic testing boosted his stock, although it’s not as if he’s an unknown player. He started two years and contributed all four years for back-to-back national champions. He was once the top recruit in the country. In Dane Brugler’s early look-ahead mock draft last spring, Smith was the No. 11 pick. This is a pedigreed player.

Jalen Carter overcame not-great feedback from Georgia coaches to stay in top 10 - PFT
When it comes to defensive tackle Jalen Carter, the word making the rounds before the draft was that the Georgia coaches did not have nice things to say. (We specifically decided not to mention any of that until after he was picked, so as not to participate in the pre-draft effort to get guys to fall.) Ian Rapoport of NFL Media hinted at that last night after Carter became the ninth overall pick in the draft. We’ve heard it more bluntly and strongly. Members of the Georgia coaching staff are not Jalen Carter fans, and they weren’t bashful about saying so. It’s one of various reasons why Carter — arguably the best player in the draft — slipped to No. 9. But he still landed in the top 10, and he ended up with one of the best teams in the NFL. Now, it’s up to him to write a better chapter in the next phase of his NFL career.

2023 NFL Draft: One player each team should target on Day 2 - PFF
Philadelphia Eagles: S Antonio Johnson, Texas A&M. Johnson produced 80.0-plus PFF grades in each of the past two seasons and impressed both in the box and in the slot for Texas A&M over that span. Along with a 79.7 PFF coverage grade, he produced an 83.7 grade in run defense.

10 players who make sense for the Eagles in Round 2 of the 2023 NFL Draft - PhillyVoice
Jalin Hyatt, WR, Tennessee: Hyatt had a breakout season out of the slot for Tennessee in 2022, catching 67 passes for 1,267 yards (18.9 PYC) and 15 TDs. He is a speed receiver with deep ball tracking skills and run after catch ability. Hyatt would not require a ton of targets, but could be counted on to make the big plays when those opportunities present themselves. He would also theoretically help keep safeties from creeping up into the box to stop the run, fearing his deep speed to beat them over the top.

Bears Trade Back! 9 for 10, pick up a future pick. - Windy City Gridiron
The Chicago Bears have traded back from #9, but they didn’t move far. They slid back one spot to #10, giving the Eagles the chance to pick one spot earlier. Field Yates is reporting that they only picked up a 2024 4th-rounder for the deal (which means that on the Johnson chart they sold out a little cheaply, giving up about 2% of the available value. That’s not a big deal, especially if they are confident that they can get their own player at #10. For the record, though, they gave up 1350 of value in exchange for 1327.4. That’s cheap, but the Chase Stuart chart for expected value obviously loves this move, as they gave up 20.6 points of expected value and gained 22.2.

Cowboys draft analysis: Dallas bolsters defensive line with DT Mazi Smith in first round - Blogging The Boys
Compared to a young Dontari Poe by some, Smith’s physical gifts are clear. He has technical issues to work on but the Cowboys clearly love the idea of putting this raw potential in Dan Quinn’s hands for molding. Some will balk at Dallas passing on CB Joey Porter Jr. or pass-rusher Nolan Smith, both more highly-regarded prospects in this class, to take a different defensive pick. But given their current numbers at corner and defensive end, Dallas’ interest in improving things at defensive tackle isn’t unreasonable. The Cowboys have been happy with third-year DT Osa Odighizuwa but are still waiting for consistency from Neville Gallimore and Quinton Bohanna. They re-signed veteran Johnathan Hankins in late March for another run-stuffer, but Smith provides an immediate key rotation piece with a high ceiling. Dallas had the 22nd run defense in the league last year, giving up over 129 yards per game. It’s been an issue for a while now and attempts to fix it through mid-round picks and bargain-bin free agents haven’t worked. Now Quinn’s finally been given a premium asset to work with at DT.

Instant analysis: Giants get much-needed CB with selection of Deonte Banks in Round 1 - Big Blue View
With the 24th pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, the New York Giants selected Maryland cornerback Deonte Banks. The Giants threw a bit of a curveball here, jumping up one spot to secure Their Guy, and get the cornerback they need for their defense. Banks is a good-sized and very athletic corner who will immediately start opposite of Adoree; Jackson. It seemed incredibly unlikely just a few hours ago that Banks would be there when the Giants made their selection, but somehow he fell out of the top 20 picks. Banks should be an excellent fit in Wink Martindale’s defense, as I noted in my Prospect Profile of him.

Washington Commanders Select Emmanuel Forbes - Tyler’s Take - Hogs Haven
The first round of the 2023 NFL Draft fell almost perfectly for the Commanders (or at least for me). When pick 16 arrived, the top player on my Big Board, Oregon cornerback Christian Gonzalez, was staring us in the face. I had no doubt the long, athletic, scheme-diverse defensive back was going to be the pick. I was a bit upset that the top four offensive tackles where all gone by pick 14, but aside from Gonzalez, there was Will Levis still sitting in the Green Room, both top tight ends, Oklahoma tackle Anton Harrison, and a few really solid corners remaining if we were able to trade back. Make no mistake - I wanted us to draft Gonzalez here, but I would have been good if we traded back into the 20’s and recouped an additional draft pick. Well, you could imagine my surprise (actually, with this staff, I probably shouldn’t even say that), when we made the pick of Emmanuel Forbes...


Social Media Information:

BGN Facebook Page: Click here to like our page

BGN Twitter: Follow @BleedingGreen

BGN Instagram: Follow @BleedingGreenInsta

BGN Manager: Brandon Lee Gowton: Follow @BrandonGowton

BGN Radio Twitter: Follow @BGN_Radio

BGN Cameo: Request a video message

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Bleeding Green Nation Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your Philadelphia Eagles news from Bleeding Green Nation