Three Roseman Leftovers

Taylor Hart
The Eagles had a third-round grade on Oregon defensive lineman Taylor Hart and were eager to land him as Day 3 of the draft commenced. They held the first pick of the fourth round and had to decide whether to pull the trigger immediately or go in a different direction and take the chance that Hart would still be on the board the next time they were on the clock

“I think Howie [Roseman] did a great job of how we ordered it,” said Chip Kelly. “The other guy [Florida DB Jaylen Watkins] would be gone first, so let’s take him. He guaranteed me Hart would be there in the fifth, and he was right.”

How could Roseman be confident enough to offer a guarantee? Teams don’t make it a habit of disclosing their draft boards to the rest of the league. How could he know that Hart would fall to them in the fifth? We asked the general manager prior to the draft how they go about gathering that type of intel.

“It’s almost like anything else – you have guys with a history of being right that you turn to throughout the league and get a sense,” he said. “It may not be directly, ‘This guy is going to [this team],’ but it’s, ‘There is no chance this  guy is there when you pick.’ 
And then the guys that kind of get in the range, you just try to get as much information as you can.”

This is where logic and research comes in. They viewed Hart as a 3-4 end. Only so many teams run a 3-4, so that narrows the field. And of the 3-4 teams, even fewer run the type of scheme that Hart is best fit for, shrinking the pool even further.

“You also kind of look at top 30 visits and who’s worked them out privately,” said Roseman.  “I felt like we had a good handle on Taylor and the teams that are interested in him. Of the teams that are interested in him, had they addressed that pick with a different player at that time, were they going to go back in the first four rounds and get the second guy?”

The answer, it turned out, was no. Hart was still there for the Eagles in the fifth. It played out as Roseman predicted it would.

‘That was on me on Josh Huff’

It’s hard to look at the selections of Hart and fellow Duck Josh Huff and not think those picks were all Kelly. The head coach, though, says that he stays out of those evaluations and allows the personnel department to form their own opinions on Oregon players. And Roseman went out of his way to take ownership of the third-round pick in particular.

“You know, it’s funny because I know coach got up here and he says he stays away from the evaluations, and it’s the truth.  He really does.  I know when I started with Oregon in August, I don’t ask for his opinion, I tell him mine, and then if we have a difference of opinion we kind of talk about it and he tells me what he sees,” said Roseman. “Obviously really liked Josh, but as an evaluator of the personnel staff, we really like Josh because it’s easy to see what he does in our offense, right, so it’s an easy transition for us.  

“I would say if anything that was on me on Josh Huff, and I was as excited as [Kelly] if not more.”

If Huff doesn’t pan out, the line above could come back to bite Roseman. If he’s a home run, Kelly will probably get the credit for it. So it goes…

Any starters?

Roseman was asked if he sees anyone in this class emerging as a starter for them in 2014.

“I think we have a group of players in this draft that will immediately come in and compete for playing time, and then it’s up to them.  But definitely, I do see immediate impact,” he said. “Now, some of it may be in a role initially.”

Jordan Matthews has arguably the best shot of earning significant playing time immediately. He seems like the front-runner for the slot heading into spring practices. Whether you consider the slot receiver a starter or not, it’s a big role. Perhaps Huff can push him for the gig.

It will be difficult for Marcus Smith to wrestle one of the starting OLB spots away from Connor Barwin or Trent Cole, at least initially, though he could certainly be part of the rotation. Same might be said for Beau Allen at nose guard and Hart at defensive end. I’m assuming that Ed Reynolds will start out on special teams. Jaylen Watkins is an interesting one. I’m anxious to see him in camp. He’s expected to compete at cornerback initially.

“[H]e certainly could be a starting outside corner in the National Football League.  He’s got enough ability to play three spots.  That makes him intriguing as he grows,” said Roseman.


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  • Aussie Eagle

    My ultimate up tempo package – Mac, Matthews, Huff, Ertz, Sproles. Without allowing any D subs, you can go from a full house look with Ertz, Sproles and Huff in the backfield, to a 5 wide look pretty easily.

    • mtn_green

      Yes, yes, yes. Brutal matchups. You are forgetting shady, and 27/2 to distribute the ball.

      • Aussie Eagle

        We should change football to allow 12 or 13 on a field that is 15 yards wider!

        • Maggie

          CFL. 12 players, field bigger. But only 3 downs.

          • Aussie Eagle

            Oh really, I’ve never watched the CFL, we don’t get it over here

          • reb

            yeah, but you’ve got Aussie rules ball to watch! No helmets or pads? awesome!

          • Aussie Eagle

            Haha well I’m originally from South Africa so really don’t enjoy Aussie rules.. Rugby though, that’s where it’s at! I hate the conversation of which sport is tougher between rugby and NFL – they’re so different.

          • Casey Collier

            I’d rather watch young Aussie women………… that’s why the word AWESOME was invented!

        • tommy_the_k

          Then it would be called Rugby

  • Jerry Pomroy

    I’ve been calling that Smith wins the starting job before season’s end from Cole. I think overall we’re in a good predicament at a couple positions where there will be some interesting competitions in TC & preseason.

  • JofreyRice

    More than a rotational role, I’d love to see a package where DeMeco can get off the field on third down. I think Cole is still a better passrusher at this stage than Smith, and I think Barwin is still a better cover guy, but I think having him get his feet wet that way is probably about the best way to ease a player into the defense.

    Put together a nickel package with Cole-Cox-Curry-Smith and Kendricks and Barwin behind them…Yeah, I think the third down D will be improved.

    • I love that front. To me, it works just as well as both a 4-2 or 3-3 (cole OR smith could play either spot, standing up or hand in dirt). AWESOME

      • Lex

        This is the building process my fellow eagles fan started with 6 picks in the draft I actually really like how we did is an underrated draft for us especially taking Marcus smith in the 1st but I understand it and love the pick….I just hope we can get some good depth at the ILB and OL other then that can’t wait to see the special teams so excited we gotta make a statement this year playing against one of the best divisions in the NFC west and our own

    • Brandon Baltic

      With that front, Kendricks would really become the QB and leader in the middle. I’d love to see him grow into that role.

    • myeaglescantwin

      our nickel set should be 4 DL. Cole, Curry, Smith, Graham.
      let Barwin and Kendricks roam the middle.

      • JofreyRice

        Put Smith in there as a tackle? I dunno about that. I wouldn’t take Cox off the field. He wore down towards the end of the year, but he’s a fantastic interior rusher. The ability to get after the QB from the inside is why he was drafted.

        • myeaglescantwin

          i was looking to give the big guys a break. Smith has played nickel DT before.
          but the knock on him is his strength, so that might hold him back.

          Who else could rush in that situation ? Square? / Kruger?

          • juggadore

            trent cole!

          • myeaglescantwin

            Trent Cole’s already in the 4 DL nickel posted.
            Looking for a pass rusher to add to Cole, Curry, Graham

            Looking at Kendricks and Barwin as the standing coverage/rushing LBs.
            and giving a break to anyone over 300.

            i’d say Kruger or Smith most likely.
            Hopefully one of those 6’9 DE’s makes the roser. Can you imagine having the edge pass rushers, and just have both the 6’9 ends standing there to bat passes over the middle. ahahha
            Chipper, you sly dog.

  • Will

    Nobody seems real thrilled about Marcus Smith… hope he has a chip on his shoulder to come in and prove all the naysayers wrong…

    • Joe L

      It’s because he’s not a big name. If you watched a lot of college football you knew who this guy was. Being a Big East guy (I’ll never call it the All American Conference, sorry) I got to see Smith quite a bit and while he was definitely a reach at 26, he wouldn’t have been around at 54 and the fact we came away with Smith AND Matthews makes me happy.

      • Will

        In your opinion is Smith better than Demarcus Lawrence?

        • eagle fan dwn south

          I think so but Demarus is a true 3-4 backer when smith is a DE and a 3-4 backer in training last year but ask yourself which is more important base defense or passing downs

          • Will

            Good point…would have to say passing since our pass Defense needs the most improvement…

          • eagle fan dwn south

            I will say passing anyway since nfl is a passing league now thats why RB getting drafted so late

      • Will

        Agree Smith would of been long gone before the 54th pick…

  • 76mustang

    Like Mayock said, Eagles will be a top 3 offense this season. What excites me is how the defense will improve going against the Eagles’ offense all those practices. The speed, conditioning, 2nd year in the system, a true QB at the back end of the defense – love how this team is shaping up!

    • Will

      Yup the Defense can grow leaps and bounds with the right 3-4 player’s, 2nd year in Billy Davis scheme should help a lot…can wait to see who ends up starting at DB’s and Safety when it’s all said and done…

      • Will

        Really excited about Beau clogging up lanes at the NT

        • Sb2bowl

          Don’t discount the improvements Logan has made over the off season– rumor has it that the team has asked him to bulk up to 315-320; also remember, he’s got elite lateral movement for a guy his size, so that helps with stunts/twists/blitz.

          Out of all of the picks, I like Beau the most; we’ve needed a “big guy” in the middle– now we have 2 (with Beau being the more “natural” of the two).

    • Fuzziness

      High five on that bro. I’m already counting down to the start of the season…

  • JofreyRice

    It is a good point. I wonder what kind of role Watkins has, as a rookie? There is kind of a logjam of players at CB, since they seem to think highly of Cary Williams.

    If Williams’ spot is up for grabs, you’d think Carroll or Watkins have a shot–assuming they stick to what they’ve said that Boykin is a nickel corner only. I’d say you’d give the edge to Carroll, being he was at least a low level starter last year for the Fins. But wouldn’t the loser of that battle be the 4th corner/1st outside reserve (this year’s Roc Carmichael)?

    So then would Watkins join the S group? There you’ve got Jenkins (starter) Wolff (poss starter), Allen (poss starter), Keelan Johnson and the guy from Stanford. Not that I think the Stanford guy is a world beater, but they did just invest a 5th…If Allen can’t take the job from Wolff, does he become a cut, in favor of younger guys? You figure Keelan Johnson is the low man on the totem pole, and Watkins might push him.

    • Will

      plus add in Maragos to the Safety mix…that’s what I like about Watkins he can play Safety as well as slot, and CB…so if he can’t make the starting line up at corner… I’m all for moving him to safety..

      • JofreyRice

        oh yeah, totally forgot about him. You’d figure he’s a lock as one of the group of special teams aces. Gotta teach some of these guys to longsnap, get rid of whathisname.

        • Will

          Not a Dorenbos fan I take it?

          • JofreyRice

            it’s just that for a roster full of guys who are versatile, it seems weird that he takes up a roster spot when all he does is throw the ball between his legs.

            I’ve never done it, so I’m speaking from utter ignorance here, but can’t you learn how to do it by practicing a whole lot? Like can’t one of the backup line guys be taught?

          • Will

            Celek is the back up at this point…it is a art…you don’t want any mistakes each and every time….Dorenbos has been reliable as hell and worth 800,000 a year…

          • Adam

            Yeah, or even a backup LB or TE. It’s not exactly rocket science. He doesn’t make any plays down field either. Have you ever seen a returner tackled by Dorenbos?

          • Tommy McCabe Jr

            Actually long snapping is one of the hardest jobs to do in football, right behind being a center. The fact that you play both positions on a punt/FG attempt makes it harder. Placing a perfectly spun snap, 8-15 yards, on the money every time while blocking an all out rush is tough. I’ve played C/LS and long snapping is by far the harder of the two since the D basically knows what you’re doing and load the box with pressure, mainly over the snapper. I actually have seen him make a few tackles too. Considering he snaps then blocks, the fact that he’s one of the first guys downfield makes him pretty special to ST. He’s averaged 3 tackles a season since coming to Philly which I’m willing to bet is better than ANY long snapper in the league

          • Token

            If you ever have a son, teach him to longsnap. Thats the easiest path to the NFL if you can be great at it.

          • he’s a magician. dude not only distracts in the locker room with card tricks, but he hypnotized Kelly his 1st day here. Dorenbos And His Wife are retiring as eagles.

          • Adam

            How long after he retires does his Barbie Doll wife leave him? I’m giving it a year and a half

          • it was all worth it. hell, i’d take that deal on a 1 year non-guaranteed contract. they’ve already been married 4 years. #ballerstatus.

          • Joe from Easton

            My god man… never saw his wife before… holy toledo!

          • EaglefaninAZ

            He’s my favorite Eagle, bar none.

          • Andy124

            I like his wife better.

          • borntosuffer

            If he has hypnotized Chip, Howie and Jeffrey, then yea, he and his wife are retiring as Eagles.

          • All In Eagles

            I remember he was injured for a game or two one year and we had Celek do it and he flubbed the long snap, cost us something, can’t recall though. Anyone?

      • Ian Farley

        watkins speed lends him to be a gunner on punts out the gate. he said he ran his 4.4 at the combine with a bum ankle. would have been faster than Gilbert in his opinion.

        i like him to be a dime corner playing the slot. he has to get stronger to be an outside corner in this system. i dont expect to see him get more snaps than Carroll in sub packages or if one of the top 3 go down. he is a player for the future and an immediate special teams guy.

        speak of ST… like the unit they are building. Margos, Braman (crazy mother) casey, carroll, watkins, nate allen, smith should get in there some on punts, huff as a return guy. that has the chance to be a group that can make plays. we know CK loves special teams. and it is important to note how it can affect a game.

        the more i hear about huff the more i think he is the eagles ROY. Matthews obviously has the better numbers, but you will see huff doing a little bit of everything initially. i love that.

        end rant.

        • mac

          Watkins is pretty strong, 22 reps at combine (most by CB/ 3rd most for S). I think his arm length will be why he struggles on the outside.

          • Ian Farley

            definitely missed that. good call.

            regardless, i like watkins as a contributor year 2.

    • Aussie Eagle

      If all else fails, we could stick Murderleg at safety (AKA Weapon X Jr)

    • Token

      I talked about this the other day.

      I think its possible Cary is June 1st cut. That carries the hit over to next year or something right? Carroll wasnt brought here to be a 4th or 5th guy on your depth chart. Its a guy with starter experience who seems to fit their profile.

      Id view Cary as the most likely to go. No way hes here next year anyway. Fletch is not only the better player but hes cheaper. Even if they decide to pay him next year he still would be cheaper then Cary is the next 2 years. But the Watkins and Carroll pickups they have some Fletch insurance too.

      So I look at Watkins as a corner. Howie seemed to get at this point. Saying you want a rook to focus on one thing. Chip said he was gonna have him working S and CB, Howie then came out and said only CB.

      To me, he looks like a natural corner. I like the way he moves there. I dont see the benefit in having this guy gain weight to play S. He doesnt have great size there either way. Now could he play S in a pinch? I think theyd hope he could. Maybe saves you from having to carry a 4th S the whole season. You can always add one if theres a injury.

      My hope is Watkins can play the slot well this year. Id be looking at Cary getting cut, Fletch and Boykin starting with Watkins in the slot. Now In that scenario Watkins would effectively be the #4. Because id have Carroll play outside when Boykin slides inside. Or maybe they just really truly are willing to lose Boykin and not play him outside. In that case Carroll and Fletch start.

      In any case, I could see Cary being gone. And they have some wiggle room now so that can happen. I think Watkins and Carroll are better backup plans then Roc Carmichal.

      • NickS1

        They can’t cut Cary this year, though. His base guaranteed the 5th day of the league year.

        • Adam

          Buzz kill!

          • NickS1

            I like his thoughts, but we can’t cut him and I’m still not certain I’d want to.

        • I’m with you. He’s here 1 more year to mentor. Allows the rookie S and CB to grow/develop, and see what the team has in the DBs. Of that “logjam”, many not be here in ’15: CW, Fletch (IMO 1 of the 2), maybe Carroll depending on how he is, Allen, KJ. All of a sudden you’re looking at Boykin and not much else (again, IMO, 1 of those 3) and Jenkins and Wolff in the back.
          All that aside, still the “chinstrap” away mantra. Sure, CW/Fletch/Boykin stayed mostly healthy. But even in the few games Roc and Chung saw action, you could hear our collective groans over by UKEagle99.
          If our biggest problem is good depth preventing rookie 3rd and 5th round backs from seeing action their first year, please show me where to sign.

          • NickS1

            Yeah, I’m 100% with that. I know Token hates him. I hate how they use him, rather than him. Let him play his physical game with the WR and he doesn’t do much to hurt you. Make him play with a 8yd cushion, well, that’s how losses against the likes of Minnesota happen.

          • jesse

            Agreed, but think they were afraid to press at the corners (where both CW and Fletcher both Excel) because lack of confidence in saftey play over the top.

          • Will

            Hopefully that changes this year..

          • NickS1

            100%. But I can’t fault CW for poor safety play.

      • Hanibal Luis

        Overall, its not a bad thought. Unfortunately, like others have pointed out and I was oblivious to this myself, I guess he can’t be cut.

        But I’m one of those who likes the concept of Cary as a player, but when he gets a PI, I want to cut him at half time or at the end of the game.

      • IAteLunchToday

        I’ve seen a few people say they think such and such player will be a June 1st cut. I’m confused, apparently. It is my understanding that a June 1st cut spreads the cap hit out over this year and then the next year. This seems unnecessary since the Eagles are under the cap this year and already rolling over the unused cap into the next year. If they wanted to cut him, it seems like they could do that at any time.

        • Jernst

          This ^

    • jesse

      I could see them putting Watkins in the slot and giving my boy boy some reps outside. Because they have said the biggest reason for keeping Boykin in the slot is because he plays it better then anyone else so if Watkins can come in and excel in the slot you have the luxury of putting the boy King outside so we don’t lose him next year

  • PhiTown

    The Jew knows….

  • TNA

    I wouldn’t expect or want a rookie coming into a decent team and starting right away unless they blow away the competition during spring training. Even then… Let the rookie earn the playing time. I like what they did with Wolff and Logan last year. The season is a marathon, esp for rookies and it’s who the best fits are at the end of the season. As for Watkins, the scouting reports suggest he would be an ideal captain for the secondary. So I like him eventually at safety. At the very least, there’s some real competition at the safety spot this year…it’s about who’s better, not who’s the least bad.

    • Will

      I want the two best Safeties starting which should be Jenkins plus who ever is the best out of the bunch…Somebody should beat out Nate Allen…if not you got the wrong players….

      • Fuzziness

        Amen…Nate Allen is not a top-tier safety. Never seen anyone look so confused in the backfield in my life. I love that “omg I thought you had him” look he always gives CBs when he gets beat in the end zone…

  • myeaglescantwin

    I find it funny how all offseason long, leading up to the draft, people are saying, “you build your team of the future through the draft.” Then when we draft players that are going to be rotational role players, everyone screams to high heavens we didn’t draft a starter.

    truth is, there were no players that were going to be drafted as starters. Anthony Barr wouldn’t even had had the #1 OLB spot. No CBs, LBs, OL, or Safeties would have been projected as day 1 starters.
    Hell,Roseman already told everyone that the safety crop was sub-par, yet everyone still expected them to move up for Clinton Dix.

    This draft class has the talent to push for a starting gig if they work & earn it in camp. The true dividends of this draft will come in key roles and situations.
    We need to trust Chip to know how to get the most impact from each of these draft picks, not just simply throw them into an 3 down starting role.

    That’s how good programs do it. I know we aren’t used to that, but hey, lets give it a shot.

  • Brent E. Sulecki

    As the days pass I’m liking this years draft more and more and seeing the fit for these players on this team. Every player has a fit, good character, and were committed to their team and education. also want to give credit to CK and HR on drafting a guy in round 7 that can actually make the team. something to be said about that. too often teams take projects that late and don’t have the time to invest in them and ultimately they don’t make the team. Beau has a real shot. HR did this a few years back with Bryce Brown. and even to another level Kurt Coleman. say what you want about KC he brought what he had although undersized he was a real gutsy player for us. I’m a fan of his. and he’s still in the league with MINN. up to him for how long.

    • Brent E. Sulecki

      and who can forget Kelce in RD 6 these picks this year. Josh Huff I want to see more than Matthews. how awesome is that problem

    • mac

      Remember asking my Ohio St friend about Kurt Coleman when we drafted him in the 7th. He said hell be starting for us soon not cause of talent but because hell outwork everyone else.

  • mark hoban

    Kudos, Tim, for the “so it goes” vonnegut reference!
    I feel like somebody shoulda died, though.

  • William Marchionni

    I love the way they prepared for the past 2 drafts, what a huge difference from the Andy I invented football years. I really do not think we will see and Firemen Watkins, Jerome McDONOTHING, Freddy its about me Mitchell etc etc. They have numerous back up plans and all these picks this draft will play and play well. The two WR will be in there making play’s as well as Smith. You can’t teach what he brings to the table, another great thing was getting players to make the special teams special these guy’s they brought in VIA FA and drafting will have a huge impact on the making this a special unit. Can’t wait for kick-off. TIMES YOURS!!!!!!!!!