Eagles draft grades have started to roll in. Here’s a roundup.
ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. gives the Eagles a B+:
He has put a premium on guys that will buy in, and I think he got those types and hit a couple home runs in the process. Nelson Agholor to me just screams “high floor.” He’s a great route runner, plucks the ball out away from his body, has the proven toughness of a return man — you should hear Polian talk about that — and is sneaky explosive. He can get behind defenses. I also think Eric Rowe at No. 47 overall was a steal. He is a great kid and offers up versatility (CB or S), and I thought he’d be a good value as early as the end of Round 1.
Evan Silva of Rotoworld gives the Eagles a B-:
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Even after whiffing on Marcus Mariota, the Eagles kept their cool and made a lot of good draft-weekend moves. Not included here was a deal with Detroit that netted Philadelphia the Lions’ 2016 third-round pick in exchange for the Eagles’ 2015 fourth-rounder. I think it’s good forward-thinking process for teams to make moves like that. Agholor will seamlessly replace Jeremy Maclin. Rowe was seen by some as a safety in the pre-draft phase, but will be a press corner in Philadelphia and is a good bet to start opposite Byron Maxwell right away. Hicks seems like a luxury pick considering the Eagles’ inside linebacker depth, but will contribute on special teams and could replace Mychal Kendricks by as soon as 2016. Although Shepherd has athletic limitations, he was one of the best cornerbacks in college football last season. I’m admittedly not as familiar with Evans and Mihalik. This draft wound up generating few headlines, but I feel confident the Eagles got better. (And they get to keep Fletcher Cox!)
Doug Farrar of SI.com gives the Eagles a B:
The Eagles missed the playoffs last season, and defense was the main reason. The secondary, to be specific. And after Philly selected USC receiver Nelson Agholor in the first round (ostensibly to replace Jeremy Maclin), the really wise pick came in the second round with Utah’s Eric Rowe, who’s played cornerback and free safety at a high level. In the third round, the choice was Texas outside linebacker Jordan Hicks, who could be a pass-rusher in a rotational sense. Then, two cornerbacks from the Sunflower State: Kansas’s JaCorey Shepherd (No. 191), and Kansas State’s Randall Evans (No. 196). Shepherd, a former receiver, might be the bigger project of the two, while Evans is the more polished player.
Bryan Fischer of NFL.com gives the Eagles a B-:
Poor Agholor will have the distinction of being “Not Marcus Mariota” in Philly, but that doesn’t matter. He’ll be a great fit for Chip Kelly’s offensive system. His return game is not to be underestimated either, and he’s a picture-perfect replacement for Jeremy Maclin. Don’t be surprised if he has the most catches of any rookie wideout next season. Rowe brings great coverage skills, and as a bonus, he can play both safety and corner. Hicks could turn out to be a quality player if he can stay healthy.
Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com gives the Eagles a B+:
The Eagles didn’t make the big move to go up and get Marcus Mariota, although they tried, so they kept their picks. They picked receiver Nelson Agholor in the first round, which I like. I love the Rowe pick as well. Nice job, Chip Kelly.
FoxSports.com gives the Eagles a B+.