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Eagles News: Nolan Smith is a ‘luxury pick that could pay off in a major way’

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 5/7/23.

NFL Combine - Portraits Photo by Todd Rosenberg/Getty Images

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2023 NFL Draft: Indianapolis Colts assembled the freakiest class; five picks that took me by surprise -
Five draft picks that took me by surprise: NOLAN SMITH. DRAFTED: Round 1, No. 30 overall. After shining at the NFL Scouting Combine, Smith was pretty widely expected to come off the board in the top 20, possibly even in the top 10. But on draft night, the Georgia standout fell to the penultimate pick of Round 1, possibly due to uncertainty about his ability to play as a three-down defender in a traditional scheme. With questions about his size, sack production and overall pass-rush potential, Smith landed right in the Eagles’ lap. Boasting a loaded roster and sufficient draft currency, GM Howie Roseman was in perfect position to take a swing on a rare athlete with outstanding football character. It’s a luxury pick that could pay off in a major way.

NFC East draft reviews: Dallas Cowboys edition - BGN
Mazi Smith, Interior Defensive Lineman, Michigan. #70 Overall Player, #7 Overall Interior Defensive Lineman. The Cowboys’ defense gave up almost 130 rushing yards a game in 2022, a problematic number when you share a division with the run-heavy Philadelphia Eagles and New York Giants. Draft Mazi Smith, then, was about competing in the NFC East and NFC at large. Smith is a big, powerful defensive lineman who has the size and power to dominate on early downs. He is not a dynamic athlete and he might have limited contributions early on as a pass rusher, but he is a space eater in the middle and that is exactly what Dallas has been missing on their defense.

Eye on the Enemy #137: Ranking the NFC and Deebo’s Dumb Words - BGN Radio
On Episode 137 of Eye on the Enemy, host John Stolnis is joined by Yahoo! Sports Senior NFL Writer and co-host of “You Pod To Win the Game,” Jori Epstein for her analysis of the Eagles’ draft haul and ranking of the top-10 teams in the NFC. Also, John expands on comments by 49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel that the Birds are “100%” his most hated team and why Eagles fans should love it.

What did the draft picks say about Rookie Minicamp? -
Already, technique is in play. Linebacker Nolan Smith is working with Defensive Ends/Outside Linebackers Coach Jeremiah Washburn and absorbing lessons on the little things about his game. “Ton of advice. Ton of things I learned, from fixing my lines to simple pass-rushing things from simple stances. You could say I love Coach Wash,” Smith said. “He’s getting me right as far as fixing my lines, my aiming points. He’s coaching me how I want to be coached.” The point it, it’s all about technique in the NFL. You can win with talent alone in college, but it takes much more than that at this level. Smith played at 242 pounds at Georgia and after losing a few pounds in the pre-draft process, he’s packing it back on.” Smith thinks that new Defensive Coordinator Sean Desai used “smaller” linebackers like him when Desai was the defensive coordinator with the Bears very effectively, but Smith isn’t sure how the Eagles will use him. He said he is excited to meet Eagles linebacker Haason Reddick soon – the rookies will leave Philadelphia after this weekend and then return on May 15, per college rules – and trade ideas and absorb knowledge from Reddick. “Media always knock us on the same thing. Certain guys like me – Von Miller’s not knocked on anymore because he’s proven himself – guys like us that are undersized guys, I just want to know certain things that he does about his game, how he approaches the game, how does he study. So many questions I have to ask,” Smith said. “I just want to learn.”

A day after his release from the Colts, former Eagles Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles gets personal - Inquirer
“I was just released yesterday by the Colts, which is actually a good thing, so don’t cry for me. It’s OK,” Foles said. “The coach that I was there for, [former Eagles offensive coordinator] Frank Reich, was fired. Their GM and I had a good relationship. It’s all good. Everything’s fine.” So what does that mean for Foles? He did hint at retirement, but it wouldn’t be the first time Foles considered calling his NFL career quits. “Shoot, almost every year of my career I’ve almost retired,” Foles said. “Every offseason, I think, ‘Do I still want to play? Do I still want to keep going?’ Specifically this last year with everything, God’s really been testing my identity in the game because I was able to get rid of it many years ago, and it was just all about Christ. But [with the] Super Bowl and different experiences, it starts creeping back in. That’s sort of what you’re recognized for. But then people get to know me, and they’re like, ‘He’s just a goofball. He’s just like any one of us.’ I mean, maybe I played in the NFL, but definitely, I’m just a man. I’m just a human. I have the same faults.”

Emmitt Smith continues to push for the Dallas Cowboys to bring back Ezekiel Elliott - Blogging The Boys
Despite drafting Kansas State running back Deuce Vaughn in the sixth round, team owner Jerry Jones himself is still not ruling out the possibility of bringing back Elliott before the start of the season. “The ship hasn’t sailed there. We haven’t made a decision at all. As far as our interest in Zeke, nothing we did today changes that. I haven’t ruled out Zeke.” Regardless of which side fans lean towards, it is clear that the Ezekiel Elliott speculation is far from over. It will be a storyline which will be worth keeping an eye on the rest of the offseason. Would you bring back Elliott if the price was reasonable?

Giants rookie mini-camp concludes: Takeaways from Day 2 - Big Blue View
Third-round pick Jalin Hyatt, a wide receiver, did not do any kickoff or punt returning at Tennessee. Daboll said the Giants would “absolutely” consider Hyatt for the punt return role if he shows an aptitude for it. “We’ll put as many guys back there as we can to figure that one out,” Daboll said. “It’s a ways away.” Hyatt was part of a group of about a half-dozen players field punts on Saturday. He also appeared to be doing some individual work on line of scrimmage releases with Giants coaches. Other than that, there was once again very little to discern from a practice where there was very limited competition.


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