Our resident draft analyst and honored correspondent for the Drafttek site has begun his work for the new season in earnest. That would be the bombastic ~BROZ, who for the first time ever gets to pick from the 32nd spot in the NFL Draft.
Allowing that “32nd spot” thing to sink in—EYE never thought we’d be seeing that in print in my lifetime as pertains to the Philadelphia Eagles. But here we are!!
For today, just about two weeks out from the afterglow of winning the Super Bowl, let’s restrict our sights to the Top 100 prospects for 2018 as ranked by Drafttek:
|2||—||Bradley Chubb||NC State||EDGE||6’3″||273||BIO||—|
|5||+1||Saquon Barkley||Penn State||RBF||5’11”||223||BIO||—|
|8||-1||Mike McGlinchey||Notre Dame||OT||6’7″||310||BIO||—|
|11||+6||Tremaine Edmunds||Virginia Tech||OLB||6’5″||236||ILB||-2||BIO||—|
|12||+1||Quenton Nelson||Notre Dame||OG||6’5″||329||BIO||—|
|15||-11||Mason Rudolph||Oklahoma State||QB||6’4″||235||BIO||—|
|16||-2||Derwin James||Florida State||S||6’2″||213||BIO||—|
|18||+4||James Washington||Oklahoma State||WRF||6’0″||205||BIO||—|
|25||+4||Denzel Ward||Ohio State||CB||5’11”||184||BIO||—|
|26||+2||Marcell Ateman||Oklahoma State||WRF||6’4″||220||BIO||—|
|27||-18||Harold Landry||Boston College||EDGE||6’3″||250||OLB||-3||BIO||—|
|28||-4||Ronald Jones II||USC||RBF||6’1″||195||BIO||—|
|40||+35||Sam Hubbard||Ohio State||EDGE||6’5″||266||BIO||—|
|48||+10||Chad Thomas||Miami (FL)||EDGE||6’5″||265||BIO||—|
|50||-1||Chukwuma Okorafor||Western Michigan||OT||6’5″||333||BIO||—|
|55||+2||Kameron Kelly||San Diego St||CB||6’1″||200||BIO||—|
|56||-3||Michael Gallup||Colorado St||WRF||6’1″||195||BIO||—|
|57||+14||Luke Falk||Washington State||QB||6’3″||214||BIO||—|
|58||+11||Christian Kirk||Texas A&M||WRF||5’11”||201||WRS||-15||BIO||—|
|59||+3||Dallas Goedert||S Dakota St||TE||6’4″||250||BIO||—|
|63||-21||Billy Price||Ohio State||OG||6’3″||315||OC||-6||BIO||—|
|64||+9||M.J. Stewart||North Carolina||CB||5’11”||200||BIO||—|
|66||-1||Auden Tate||Florida State||WRF||6’5″||225||BIO||—|
|67||-22||Leighton Vander Esch||Boise State||ILB||6’4″||240||BIO||—|
|68||-1||Desmond Harrison||West Georgia||OT||6’7″||300||BIO||—|
|73||+25||Kalen Ballage||Arizona State||RBF||6’3″||230||BIO||—|
|74||+30||Brendan Mahon||Penn St||OG||6’4″||315||BIO||—|
|75||+7||Derrick Nnadi||Florida State||DL1T||6’1″||312||BIO||—|
|76||+42||Mike White||Western Kentucky||QB||6’3″||215||BIO||—|
|77||—||Mark Walton||Miami (FL)||RBF||5’9″||205||BIO||—|
|79||+93||Kyzir White||West Virginia||S||6’3″||215||BIO||—|
|80||-1||Josh Sweat||Florida State||EDGE||6’5″||250||BIO||—|
|81||+28||Martinas Rankin||Mississippi State||OT||6’5″||302||BIO||SCT|
|86||-32||Armani Watts||Texas A&M||S||5’11”||200||BIO||—|
|88||+2||Christian Sam||Arizona State||ILB||6’2″||237||BIO||—|
|89||-9||Jaylen Samuels||NC State||TE||5’11”||236||FB||-71||BIO||—|
|91||+10||Jalyn Holmes||Ohio State||DL5T||6’5″||270||BIO||—|
|92||+55||DaeSean Hamilton||Penn State||WRF||6’1″||211||BIO||—|
|94||+3||Josh Adams||Notre Dame||RBF||6’2″||220||BIO||—|
|96||-3||Cedrick Wilson||Boise State||WRF||6’3″||188||BIO||—|
|97||-6||Tarvarus McFadden||Florida State||CB||6’1″||201||BIO||—|
Okay, that’s a start. Remember, the NFL Scouting Combine has been moved back to the first week of March this year, so a lot of those rankings are bound to change. But we have some idea of the players expected to be in high demand as potential impact guys in the first 3 rounds.
Enter ~BROZ, stage left…
First off, the Cleveland Browns skew the pooch (haha, EYE made a funny!) by making this move and taking my personal fave out of the picture:
“The Cleveland Browns are drafting first-overall in the 2018 Draft, and boy, did they earn it! They finished the season 24th in Total Offense, which almost seems like an achievement when you consider they finished dead last in scoring. It took them 16 games to amass 234 points (14.6 Points Per Game…ouch!!!); the LA Rams reached that mark around Halloween.
“After the 2016 Draft, the Browns tried convincing everyone (especially themselves) that Carson Wentz and Jared Goff weren’t worth the 2nd-overall pick. They rewound that rhetoric and used it to defend their decision to pass on Deshaun Watson in 2017. Now, having been forced to abandon the argument that those players weren’t franchise QBs, they’ve resorted to the “Well, they wouldn’t have been good here” argument. After being burned in successive drafts, the WORST thing Cleveland could do in the 2018 Draft is to try to make up for past sins by reaching for a QB with the first pick (none of which are the prospects those other guys were), when the most dynamic RB prospect since Adrian Peterson is sitting there ready to put the franchise on his back. I mean, 3,900 rushing yards including 43 TDs, over 1,000 receiving yards with 8 TDs, 2 return TDs, and even a PASSING TD!!!! As impressive as those stats are, throw them ALL away, and simply watch this guy play. He is a Year 1 Superstar. Now Cleveland…listen Cleveland…come on…you can do this. “With the first pick in the 2018 draft, the Cleveland Browns select….quarterback…” NOOooOOoOOooO!!!!!”
Now ~BROZ (assuming no trade-ups or trade-backs by the Eagles) has to wait until the 32nd pick:
“The 2018 NFL Draft is going to be pretty enjoyable for Eagles’ fans to watch. The Draft will be held in Cowboys Country, so not only will we be able to hear the phrase “Super Bowl Champion Philadelphia Eagles” echoing through Jerry’s precious stadium every five minutes, but we’ll also get to watch hordes of bottle-chucking Eagles’ fans invade Arlington and cause mass panic. The one downside is that we’ll have to sit through 31 other RD1 selections before drafting, but that’s a pretty sweet problem to have.
“When the Eagles finally do pick, look for them to bolster the O-Line if there is a tackle of value available. With so few picks, the Eagles can’t afford to reach here, but if there’s a guy that can improve Carson Wentz’s protection, they’ll jump at the chance. The Eagles surrendered 36 sacks during the regular season, which isn’t great. The protection improved in the post season, however, as the team led all playoff contestants with just two sacks allowed. Future HOF Tackle Jason Peters swears he’ll return for 2018, but at 36 and coming off a torn ACL, the Eagles can’t afford to count on him. Second-year tackle Halapoulivaati Vaitai improved as much as anyone on the team, so it’s not as if Philly MUST scramble for talent here. However, if competition and depth can be added, the team should do so. UCLA’s Kolton Miller is a guy that’s picking up steam. With only two sacks and five QB hurries allowed on 544 pass-blocking snaps in 2017, as well as possessing the wing span of an albatross, Miller is the kind of lineman that can shoot up draft boards with a strong Combine. -Broz, Eagles Analyst”
Cleveland gets the Eagles’ 2nd-round pick from the collateral damage of our trading up to pick Carson Wentz in 2016. So that makes ~BROZ’ 1st-round pick above even more crucial. No matter whether you agree with ~BROZ or not on that selection, it simply has to pan out, or we could be looking at some deep doo-doo consequences in talent decline and cap-space down the road.
We also have no Round 3 pick scheduled, as Buffalo collected that chip in the Ronald Darby for Jordan Matthews trade last year.
~BROZ will get busy again in Round 4:
Prior to the trade with the Dolphins for Jay Ajayi, the Eagles owned three fourth round picks. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the fourth round pick that will go to the Dolphins will be the second in order of those three picks, however it plays out.
To recap, the three fourth round picks the Eagles hold are:
- Their own fourth round pick.
- The fourth round pick acquired from the Patriots for Eric Rowe.
- The fourth round pick acquired from the Vikings for Sam Bradford.
Whew! You need a bookkeeper to keep track of this stuff!
Then in Round 5, the Eagles have two picks—because the Eagles had traded Matt Tobin along with a 2018 seventh-round pick to Seattle for the Seahawks’ fifth-round pick in 2018.
In Round 6, we have our “regular” pick…and then, of course, no pick in Round 7 due to the Matt Tobin trade.
So if the current draft board holds to form, ~BROZ’ main focus will be concentrated on that 32nd overall pick, and then he rests until the scramble drill in Round 4.
Nice work if you can get it! And no complaints here about the lack of early-round picks—it was the cost of building a Super Bowl winner. Plus, I have a sneaky feeling Howie Roseman has a few more surprises up his sleeves (pun intended).