Here’s the weekly mock draft roundup, along with projections for who the Eagles will take with the fourth pick.
Lots of love for West Virginia QB Geno Smith this time around.
Rob Rang of CBSSports.com has the Eagles taking Smith:
Michael Vick has proven unreliable. Nick Foles, despite what the Eagles are saying publicly, is clearly not a fit in head coach Chip Kelly’s offense. Thus, this seems to be the logical spot for Smith, the most gifted talent of an average quarterback class. The Eagles are certainly doing their homework on the strong-armed quarterback. Team owner Jeffrey Lurie, general manager Howie Roseman and head coach Chip Kelly traveled to Morgantown to put the former Mountaineer quarterback through a personal workout three days before WVU’s scheduled Pro Day.
The crew at OurLads.com also:
Demonstrates good accuracy vertically as well as horizontally. Sudden release. Snaps ball out to perimeter receivers after setting his feet. Ready to pull the trigger at all times. Right on target with his passes.Student of the game. Can fire a dart through a smoke ring. The Raiders have big outside speed and Smith is the guy that can get them the ball. Carson Palmer’s best days are way behind him so Smith makes sense. A def tackle is also in the mix.
Clark Judge of CBSSports.com too:
Michael Vick can’t quarterback these guys. Someone else must, and Smith is my choice.
And Pat Kirwan of CBSSports.com:
Michael Vick is a short-term answer at QB and Nick Foles should be in a different offense. Draft Smith and trade Foles. If the Eagles pass on Smith they should come back around for EJ Manuel in the next round.
Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times also has Smith:
Philadelphia isn’t going to spend all that money to hire Chip Kelly, then leave the cupboard bare at quarterback. Michael Vick is at best a short-term solution.
Vinnie Iyer of the Sporting News goes with Smith:
Sure, for the moment, Michael Vick and Nick Foles look like they’ll be battling to be the starting quarterback for Chip Kelly. But there’s no denying Smith has the basic skill set (arm, accuracy, athleticism) that Kelly could mold into something special in his up-tempo passing offense.
Meanwhile, Josh Norris of Rotoworld.com goes with Utah DT Star Lotulelei:
Because of their free agency spending, the Eagles do not have a critical need to fill, allowing them to go in a variety of directions with this pick. Lotulelei is an excellent nose tackle prospect but is not locked into that position and could help in a variety ways along the front three.
Bucky Brooks of NFL.com has the Eagles landing Texas A&M offensive tackle Luke Joeckel:
Chip Kelly understands the importance of protecting the passer, which is why drafting Joeckel makes complete sense in this scenario.
Eric Galko of Optimum Scouting has the Birds taking Missouri defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson:
Switching from Dion Jordan last week, after re-evaluating the Eagles needs, finding a starting 5-technique opposite Fletcher Cox would be ideal. Chip Kelly values versatility and athleticism, and Richardson fits both of those categories well.
Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk goes with Richardson also.
Dane Brugler of CBSSports.com has the Eagles taking Florida defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd:
Philadelphia wants to add big, strong athletes to the roster and adding Floyd to the mix fits that description. He is a similar prospect as the Eagles’ first round pick from last year Fletcher Cox, but a talent like Floyd might be too good to pass up.
Mike Tanier of SportsOnEarth.com devises a “consensus” mock and ends up with Central Michigan offensive tackle Eric Fisher:
This is the first draft of the Chip Kelly era, so no one knows what to expect. The Michael Vick contract extension threw much of the chorus off the Geno Smith scent, but unlike the Alex Smith trade, the cap-friendly Vick deal does not look like a serious investment. The smattering of Geno interest in picks 2-4 could force one of the quarterback-hungry teams in the 7-10 spots to make a move. Or that just might be what the Jaguars, Raiders and Eagles want us to believe.
Ben Volin of the Palm Beach Post also says it’ll be Fisher:
Need OL help after Jason Peters’ injury and Demetress Bell’s release; Fisher provides instant upgrade.
Don Banks of SI.com goes with Alabama CB Dee Milliner:
I’m not ruling out the possibility the Eagles are Geno Smith’s landing spot, but I’m also not convinced of it by any stretch. Maybe the next three weeks will help clarify that question. Offensive tackle Eric Fisher would be an easy card to turn in, but with both Jason Peters and Todd Herremans returning from injury in 2013, I keep coming back to the notion that the draft’s top cornerback might have more rookie impact in Philly than drafting a future starter/insurance policy at left tackle.
Russ Lande of the National Football Post goes with LSU DE/OLB Barkevious Mingo:
While Chip Kelly will be disappointed that Dion Jordan is already gone, they are excited about the potential that Barkevious Mingo has. A special athlete who constantly makes big plays rushing the passer; he would be a great fit at outside linebacker in the Eagles new 34 defense.
Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com goes with Mingo too:
Pass rushers are always a nice pick this high.
Chris Steuber of OurLads.com has the Eagles taking Oregon OLB Dion Jordan in the first and Florida State QB EJ Manuel in the second.
OurLads.com has the Eagles taking Florida safety Matt Elam in the second round:
A playmaker who made big plays in big games. Instinctive with the ability to read quickly and diagnose the play. Good anticipation with quick reactions. Aggressive on the ball in the air. Brings the hammer when schemed to blitz the quarterback. Physical in his play. Ability to stay on his feet and play off blockers. Competitive wrap up tackler.