Examining the Eagles’ Remaining Positions of Need and Day Three Targets

With the first two days of the draft now in the books, the Eagles’ remaining picks include a fourth rounder, two sixth rounders, and a seventh rounder. With some holes still left to fill, I listed every player at a position of need that could be targeted by the Eagles tomorrow. Players are foremostly listed according to how I rank the Eagles’ remaining positions of need. Within each position, players are listed alphabetically. Also of note, I ranked the Eagles’ remaining positions of need with the assumption that current guard Evan Mathis will be traded at some point prior to the 2015 season. Total players listed: 40

1. Safety
Adrian Amos- 6’0 218 lbs.
Notes: Plus athleticism for the safety position. Above average at recognizing routes. Plus ability in coverage. Below average in run support. Takes poor pursuit angles at times. I am bullish on Amos, and if what shows up on his college tape translates to the NFL, he’s an excellent candidate to thrive in Billy Davis’s defense. If the Eagles opt to wait on drafting a safety or miss out on a target in the first two rounds of the draft, Amos is likely the team’s best remaining option.
Projection: Third round

Ibraheim Campbell- 5’11 208 lbs.
Notes: Aggressive when near the football. Plus ability at forcing fumbles. Adequate in run support. High character player. Takes too long to read an offensive play. Poor ball skills. Struggles with missed tackles at times.
Projection: Sixth round

Erick Dargan- 5’11 210 lbs.
Notes: Intelligent player. Plus quickness and route recognition. Above average ability as a tackler. Below average speed and athleticism. If the Eagles somehow miss out on a safety until the waning moments of the draft, Dargan’s Oregon ties could make him a likely candidate to be drafted by Chip Kelly.
Projection: Seventh round

Kurtis Drummond- 6’1 208 lbs.
Notes: Plus size for a safety. Plays faster than measureables suggest. Above average ability to recover when beaten. Poor tackler. Takes below average angles in pursuit. Allowed 9.1 yards per target in the 2014 season. Drummond benefited from playing in the outstanding Michigan State Press Cover 4 defense. With little experience in true man-to-man coverage and sub-average tackling skills, I just cannot see Drummond fitting into the Eagles’ current defense.
Projection: Early fifth round

Durrell Eskridge- 6’3 208 lbs.
Notes: The tallest safety in the draft. Plus ability in run support. Average athleticism for size and position. Below average speed for an NFL safety. Ducks head too often when attempting to make tackles.
Projection: Sixth round

Clayton Geathers- 6’2 218 lbs.
Notes: Plays quicker than measureables would suggest. Plus ability to close on ball. Welcomes contact. Too aggressive at times. Tends to be easily fooled by play action.
Projection: Seventh round

Chris Hackett- 6’0 195 lbs.
Notes: Plays under control and has plus ability in run support. Intelligent football player. Extremely slow for an NFL safety. Struggles to play sideline-to-sideline as a cover safety.
Projection: Seventh round

Anthony Harris- 6’1 183 lbs.
Notes: Average ability as a cover safety. Good hands and ball skills for his position. Plus tackler. Will have to put on weight in the NFL. Can be blocked by receivers when defending the run. Harris’s skill-set certainly fits what Philadelphia does defensively, and the Eagles could do definitely do worse on the third day of the draft.
Projection: Fifth round

Gerod Holliman- 6’0 218 lbs.
Notes: Fourteen interceptions in 2014 and won the Thorpe Award. Undisciplined player who is slow for his size. Twenty missed tackles last season. Will make great plays in the NFL but will also make horrific plays with little room left in between. I do not see the Eagles targeting Holliman.
Projection: Late fourth round

Anthony Jefferson- 6’1 198 lbs.
Notes: Rotated between cornerback and safety while at UCLA. Plus ability to cover tight ends and slot receivers. Takes good angles to the ball. Below average athleticism and speed. Struggles against slot receivers with speed. Missed games throughout his career at UCLA with injuries. Pac-12 connection is notable. Jefferson is another intriguing late-round guy for Eagles’ fans to keep an eye on.
Projection: Seventh round

Cody Prewitt- 6’2 208 lbs.
Notes: Plus instincts. Above average ability to cover crossing routes from the Robber position. Poor athleticism for his position. Below average ability in man coverage. Best suited in a defense with good cornerbacks. I do not see the Eagles targeting Prewitt.
Projected: Fourth round

James Sample- 6’2 209 lbs.
Notes: Plus size for an NFL safety. Plays well from sideline to sideline. Takes good pursuit angles. Is susceptible to play action. Absorbs ball carriers at times. Needs more on field experience to polish coverage skills.
Projection: Sixth round

Josh Shaw- 6’0 201 lbs.
Notes: Like Rollins and Rowe, Shaw will be mentioned with the safeties and the cornerbacks in this piece. Attacks ball. Technique needs improvement. Gets caught sleeping too often. Pac-12 connection is notable. Respected NFL Network Draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah thinks Shaw is a bonafide starting NFL safety. Shaw’s size and experience at cornerback could make him an intriguing option for the Eagles at the cornerback or safety position.
Projection: Fourth round

Derron Smith- 5’10 200 lbs.
Notes: Plus skills in coverage. Not particularly fast for size. Undersized for an NFL safety and will struggle greatly to cover tight ends. Elite ball skills. Pursuit angles are below average. Tackling technique could use work. Smith’s coverage skills make him an interesting second or third round option in the upcoming draft, but his lack of size makes him far from a slam-dunk for the Eagles.
Projection: Late second round

2. Offensive Line
T.J. Clemmings- 6’5 309 lbs.
Notes: Plus athleticism for position. Plus foot quickness. Strong hands that can stun edge rushers. Strong finisher of blocks. Still raw. Needs improvement in advancing to the second level. Can get down on himself if he gets beat.
Projection: Late first round

La’el Collins- 6’4 305 lbs.
Notes: Strong hands. Plus pass protector. Technically proficient. Can likely play guard or tackle. Struggles to bring hips during blocks at times. Below average speed and agility for an offensive linemen. Plays high too often. If he is available, Collins will be the best offensive linemen on most big boards when the Eagles pick in the first round. Collins has visited with the Eagles prior to the draft.
Projection: First round

Sean Hickey- 6’5 309 lbs.
Notes: I am bullish on Hickey. Strong prospect that played tackle while at Syracuse but likely projects as a guard in the NFL. Plays with good leverage. Below average as a second-level run blocker. Hands are too wide often in pass protection. Can add some weight and strength to his upper body when he enters the NFL. If the Eagles choose to wait until the middle of the draft to select an offensive linemen, Hickey could be a target. Hickey is likely to remain at guard throughout his NFL career.
Projection: Fifth round

Josue Matias- 6’5 309 lbs.
Notes: Long arms. Excellent cut blocker. Plus ability to block at the second level. Intelligent player who recognizes defensive line stunts. Lacks desirable power. Does not move particularly well in space. Slow to recover when beaten in pass protection.
Projection: Fifth round

Terry Poole- 6’5 307 lbs.
Notes: Hand placement in run game is excellent. Limited athletically. Above average ability to recover when beaten. Slow first kick-slide in pass protection. Almost certainly projects as a guard in the NFL. Poole has visited with the Eagles prior to the draft.
Projection: Sixth round

Austin Shepherd- 6’4 315 lbs.
Notes: Plus ability as a lateral mover. Effective mirroring in pass protection. Strong hands that can redirect pass rushers. Narrow base at times. Above average strength for an offensive linemen. Lower body is stiff.
Projection: Sixth round

Tyrus Thompson- 6’5 324 lbs.
Notes: I am bullish on Thompson. Plus athleticism for an offensive linemen. Moves well in pass protection. Quick feet for frame. Biggest concern is laziness. Below average finisher of blocks. Too often plays with poor technique. Thompson needs to work on his motor, but his athleticism and size should make him an option for the Eagles on the third day of the draft.
Projection: Fourth round

Daryl Williams- 6’5 327 lbs.
Notes: Plus physicality for an offensive linemen. Powerful hands. Exceptional down blocker. Elite work ethic. Below average athleticism. Needs to improve lateral movement. Body control and agility need improvement.
Projection: Fifth round

3. Pass Rusher
OLB Kwon Alexander- 6’1 227 lbs.
Notes: Above average athleticism and lateral movement ability. Plus speed for position. Will disrupt tight ends and running backs at the beginning of a route. Plays too high. Poor awareness at times. Takes false steps too often. Gets washed down too easily when run blocked.
Projection: Third round

DE Anthony Chickillo- 6’3 267 lbs.
Notes: Consistent player. Strong hands. Effective with arms at the snap of the ball. Plus ability against the run for his position. Former five star recruit that underachieved while at Miami. Not an explosive player. Does not have a definite position in the NFL. Needs to add bulk and thickness to lower body.
Projection: Sixth round

DE Xzavier Dickson- 6’3 260 lbs.
Notes: Plays low and is fast at the snap of the ball. Uses leverage and strength to shed blocks. Does not dominate tight ends the way he should. Below average athlete and is stiff in the lower body. Hardly ever used in pass coverage.
Projection: Sixth round

DE Trey Flowers- 6’2 266 lbs.
Notes: High motor player. Consistent with hand placement. Good technician. Can hold his own against the run. Below average burst at the snap of the ball.
Projection: Late third round

OLB Alani Fua- 6’5 238 lbs.
Notes: Extremely versatile player. Excellent in space. Plus ability in coverage. Above average acceleration for the position. Has habit of losing contain at times on the edge. Fua has visited with the Eagles prior to the draft and is definitely a player to keep an eye on during the third day of the draft.
Projection: Fifth round

OLB Obum Gwacham- 6’5 246 lbs.
Notes: Played wide receiver before moving to defensive end in 2014 at Oregon State. Elite explosiveness. Effective in coverage for his size. Scouts question his ability as an every down NFL player due to his play strength. Needs to add variety to his moves as a pass rusher. Below average against the run. Pac-12 connection is notable.
Projection: Fifth round

OLB Mike Hull- 6’0 237 lbs.
Notes: Great lateral ability. Reliable tackler. Shows awareness in zone coverage. Lacks bulk and has extremely short arms. Below average athleticism. Liability in man coverage against running backs.
Projection: Sixth round

DE Cedric Reed- 6’5 269 lbs.
Notes: Above average speed and first move for his position. Above average inside move as a pass rusher. Above average pursuit ability for his position. Struggles to shed blocks. Struggles as a pass rusher when he is forced outside.
Projection: Sixth round

OLB Jake Ryan- 6’2 240 lbs.
Notes: Played inside linebacker at Michigan during the 2014 season but projects as an outside linebacker in the NFL. Plus talent as a tackler. Moves well from sideline to sideline. Versatile player who has a place in any scheme. Struggles at times to shed blocks. Missed games during the 2013 season with a torn ACL.
Projection: Fifth round

DE Za’Darius Smith- 6’4 274 lbs.
Notes: High motor for a player of his size. Good build in upper and lower body. Strong at the point of attack. Above average strength in hands and knows how to use them. High character player. Below average ability as a pass rusher. Below average athleticism for his position. May only project as 4-3 defensive end.
Projection: Fourth round

DE Lynden Trail- 6’7 269 lbs.
Notes: Long frame. Primarily used as an OLB in a 3-4 defense but can also play with hand in dirt. Continues to improve as a pass rusher. Raw player. Played wide receiver in high school and is still learning how to be an edge rusher. Takes wide angles at quarterback too often. Below average at using hands. Some teams project him as an NFL tight end. Trail’s athleticism and potential may lead to a team drafting him a round earlier than most projections.
Projection: Sixth round

OLB Davis Tull- 6’2 246 lbs.
Notes: High-motor player at all times. Plays stronger than his measureables suggest. Elite hands. Plus power for size. Lightning quick spin move. Overall competition while at UT-Chattanooga is a concern. Lacks desired burst. Will struggle against athletic tackles in the NFL.
Projection: Fourth round

OLB Tony Washington- 6’4 247 lbs.
Notes: Has experience playing as an outside linebacker and defensive end in a 3-4 defense. Still growing into large frame. Flashes edge-setting potential at times. Reliable tackler. Not good in man coverage. Takes wide angles when rushing the quarterback too often. The Oregon and Pac-12 connection is notable. While Washington is projected as a priority free agent by most draft experts, he is one to keep an eye on in the late rounds of the draft. If Chip Kelly chooses not to draft Washington, there’s an above average chance he’s signed as an undrafted free agent by the Eagles following the draft.
Projection: Undrafted free agent

4. Quarterback
Bryan Bennett- 6’2 211 lbs.
Notes: Former Oregon player before transferring to Southeastern Louisiana. Elite athleticism for position. Above average arm strength. Below average accuracy and ball placement. Footwork is sloppy at times. Throws into traffic too often. Oregon and Pac-12 connection is notable.
Projection: Seventh round

Brandon Bridge- 6’4 229 lbs.
Notes: Frame will allow him to add weight once in the NFL. Elite arm strength. Elite release quickness. Plus athleticism. Makes plays with his feet but does not tuck the ball every time the pocket breaks down. Poor accuracy. Footwork is inconsistent. Lacks touch on throws. Rushes throws at times.
Projection: Seventh round

Cody Fajardo- 6’1 223 lbs.
Notes: Elite athleticism for position. Plus ability as a scrambler. Accurate on the move. Late delivering passes at times. Panics at times in the pocket. Intermediate passing issues. Below average at reading read-defender on zone read plays.
Projection: Seventh round

Brett Hundley- 6’3 226 lbs.
Notes: Another intriguing prospect who fits the mold of the athletic quarterback that Chip Kelly seemingly desires. Sturdy frame. Plus ability at maneuvering inside the pocket to buy time. Plus quickness to escape from pocket when necessary. Played behind a below-average offensive line while at UCLA. Has not shown ability to win from the pocket yet. Too slow moving through progressions at times. Takes off as a runner too often. Pac-12 connection is notable.
Projection: Second round

Bryce Petty- 6’3 230 lbs.
Notes: Surprising athleticism for his size. Understands when to alter velocity of pass. Accurate deep ball passer. Above average at buying time in the pocket. Biggest concern is that he may be a product of Baylor’s air-raid offense. Makes mistakes when first read is not open. Must learn to read defenses once he is in the NFL.
Projection: Late second round

Follow Sidelines and Headlines creator Ray Butler on Twitter: @RayButlerII


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