It has been a strange 6 months for the EAGLES, starting with the firing of CHIP KELLY, and followed by a contract extension for SAM BRADFORD, the signing of VFA QB/CHASE DANIEL and then capped by a blockbuster trade of Draft Picks to get themselves in position to acquire CARSON WENTZ. During the course of all those fun and games the team purged themselves of many of the roster names brought to town by KELLY, in a major roster makeover. My condolences to EAGLES fans who have been forced to watch the team seemingly operate in panic mode. So here’s a look at what got added with the 8 Picks the team ended up holding for the 2016 Draft.
Round 1 CARSON WENTZ/QB/NORTH DAKOTA STATE 6’5/237 4.70/40 10″H/32 3/8″A
There were two “sure thing” potential franchise QB in this Draft and WENTZ was one of them. His potential looks as bright as his positive personality. To my eyes he’s a small school ANDREW LUCK. It may be too much to throw him into the NFL fires as a Rookie, coming from a small school career consisting of only 23 starts, but he has all the tools. He fits the old cliche’ about being cool, calm & collected. He’s a big gangly looking kid who would be well served to add another 10 lbs. of muscle to his 235 lb. frame. In a best case scenario BRADFORD has a good season as their starter and they can trade him in the off-season, then let WENTZ head into 2017 as their starter. His maturity, and down to earth attitude should serve him well, not to mention his clearly high IQ, football and otherwise. Good move for the long term on the franchise’s part. I see a productive career in his future.
Pick # 2 GBN Rank: 5 Ourlads Rank: 6 PP Rank: 6
Round 3 ISAAC SEUMALO/OG/OREGON STATE 6’4/303 5.21/40 9 7/8″H/33″A
Before a foot injury that cost him his 2014 season I thought this guy was a potential 1st Rounder. He has played all along the OL during his college career. He lacks the quickness and foot speed to play outside at the pro level, but should be an above average starter on the inside. He has been AlL-Academic PAC 12, and a team captain. He got better and better last season as he returned from injury. Had he been eligible for post season play I truly believe we all would have had him as a Top 100 prospect. The Interior OL was the undoing of the KELLY Era in Phily, IMO, and clearly EAGLES brass recognized the need to upgrade the play inside n the Draft and VFA. The sooner this guy works his way into the starting OL unit the better, for this team. Had 37 career starts in 3 seasons of college play.
Pick # 79 GBN Rank: 139 Ourlads Rank: 203 PP Rank: 138
Round 5 WENDELL SMALLWOOD/RB/WEST VIRGINIA 5’10/208 4.45/40 9 1/4″H/30 1/2″A
SMALLWOOD had an excellent junior season for WVU, rushing for over 1500 yards, at 6.38 ypc. He is a slashing runner, who gets most of his yardage between the tackles. But he is fast enough to get to the corner on well blocked plays. He’s a bit too small to be the workhorse back, but getting him a dozen rushes a game could be a nice boost to their running attack. It should also be noted that he’s a good receiver out of the backfield. He shows good balance, which allows him to bounce off some would-be tacklers. He should make a nice addition as a 3rd option for their RB group. He will also have to work himself into multiple Special Teams roles as well.
Pick # 153 GBN Rank: 195 Ourlads Rank: 188 PP Rank: 254
Round 5 HALAPOULIVAATI VAITAI/OT/TCU 6’6/320 5.24/40 10 5/8″H/33″A
I’m not sure any OL prospect helped himself more than VAITAI during the post-season with his workouts and interviews. He’s not elite, and isn’t a track athlete, but when you combine his agile feet with his overall size he becomes an interesting prospect. He will likely get a long look over at RT, but his best position eventually may come into play on the interior. In the short term I expect him to be a game day active player and back up at least 3 OL slots. Another nice addition to the roster in a back-up role.
Pick # 164 GBN Rank: 314 Ourlads Rank: 207 PP Rank: 166
Round 6 BLAKE COUNTESS/DB/AUBURN 5’10/184 4.50/40
Two years ago he was a star in the Big 10. Last season he was a most of the time starter at S for Auburn. He’s too small for an NFL S, and too slow to be an NFL CB. But he’s instinctive enough to be a sub-package performer especially in the slot. He’s a feisty little guy with plenty of want-to. He could earn a sot on the team as a Special Teamer and slot Corner. I’m not terribly excited about his prospects, but there is something about his makeup that intrigues me.
Pick # 196 GBN Rank: 346+ NR Ourlads Rank: 300+ NR PP Rank: 300+ NR
Round 7 JALEN MILLS/DB/LSU 6’0/191 4.56/40 31 1/8″A/9 1/8″H
He spent much of 2015 out with injury. But overall he was a 4-year starter, 2 @ CB, 2 @ S. But by NFL standards he’s too slight for S and not fast enough for CB, which is why he dropped from the Top 100 to Round 7. He is a fluid athlete, which makes him almost ideal for a S slot in today’s pass happy NFL. He will show up in run support, but the general concern is that he will be run over trying to provide run support. My gut says he could be quite the pleasant surprise for the Eagles, especially this late.
Pick # 233 GBN Rank: 79 Ourlads Rank: 129 PP Rank: 85
Round 7 ALEX McCALISTER/ER/FLORIDA 6’6/239 4.78/40 36″A/9 3/8″H
He doesn’t really have a position for an NFL team, but he can generate pass rush pressure with his length, burst and persistence. He’s also had his run-ins with the Gators coaching staffs. It’s a flyer, but he could be a specialist as a rusher while the team tries to find a real position for him, perhaps standing up. If things don’t work out in Phily he might end up in the CFL next season.
Pick # 240 GBN Rank: 172 Ourlads Rank: 205 PP Rank: 300+ NR
Round 7 JOE WALKER/LB/OREGON 6’2/236 4.45/40 10 1/4″H/31 3/4″A
He’s a better football player than being the guy selected 3rd from the end of the Draft. But he generated almost no excitement in the scouting community. He should star on Special Teams and finds the ball well in space. He had 87 tackles for the Ducks Defense last season. Like MILLS he could end up being a very pleasant surprise for being taken this late.
Pick # 251 GBN Rank: 346+ NR Ourlads Rank: 205 PP Rank: 300+ NR
Considering they gave up a lot of their draft to move into place for WENTZ, this is not a bad Draft group. They could end up with 3-4 eventual starters and almost all of the rest could stick at the bottom of a roster in flux. If WENTZ turns into the QB many think they may look like geniuses in the near future. No guts, no glory some say. That could sum up this effort very nicely, and WENTZ is the key.