Wake-Up Call: A Search For Brawn And Brains

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Chip Kelly
‘s “big people beat up little people” line is a popular one, and will be recited plenty in the coming days with the combine getting underway later this week. Height, weight, hand size, wing span…all of these measurables mean something to Kelly, and can help lead us towards the players that may be of interest to the Eagles. But there’s another, less heralded quote that should also be kept in mind as the powers that be descend on Indianapolis to get up close and personal with the draft prospects.

“There’s a very cerebral part to this game that I don’t know if people give enough credit to. It’s about making good decisions. Dumb people do dumb things and smart people rarely do dumb things,” he said last April. Read more »

Weekend Reading: Kelly’s Draft Advantage

NFL: Detroit Lions at Philadelphia Eagles

There was a common thread among three of the Eagles’ first four draft picks last season: they competed against Chip Kelly in college.

Zach Ertz and Matt Barkley both played in the Pac-12, while Bennie Logan’s LSU squad took on Oregon back in 2011. The only exception was first-round selection Lane Johnson.

Rick Gosselin of The Dallas Morning News thinks Kelly and other coaches who have made their way to the NFL from college have a distinct advantage in the draft: Read more »

Wake-Up Call: Ducks In the Draft

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Chip Kelly likes him some Oregon players, you may have heard.

From Dennis Dixon to Jeff Maehl, he brought in plenty of familiar faces to play a variety roles as he transitioned from college to the pro game. There are six Ducks currently on the roster (DE Brandon Bair, S Patrick Chung, LB Josh Kaddu, Maehl, LB Casey Matthews and WR Will Murphy), which is the most players from any one university on the squad.

Safe to say Kelly will have some opinions on the Oregon players that have declared for the 2014 draft, seeing as he recruited and coached them in a former life. It’s probably a good idea that we become familiar with them. Read more »

Wake-Up Call: Draft Offers Options At Receiver

NFL: NFC Wildcard Playoff-New Orleans Saints at Philadelphia Eagles

A record 98 underclassmen have declared for the 2014 NFL Draft. Within that wave lies  a group of talented receivers that has enriched the position significantly.

“When you talk about the underclassmen, that’s where the guts of this draft is. Last year was more senior-heavy,” said Daniel Jeremiah, a former scout for the Eagles. “This year we’re talking about 9-10 underclass wide receivers that are first, second-round players in my opinion.”

Jeremiah sees seven receivers being selected in the first round, which would be the most since 2004. And they are: Sammy Watkins (junior, Clemson), Mike Evans (redshirt sophomore, Texas A&M), Kelvin Benjamin (redshirt sophomore, Florida State), Marqise Lee (junior, USC), Paul Richardson (redshirt junior, Colorado), Jarvis Landry (junior, LSU) and Davante Adams (redshirt sophomore, Fresno State).

Mel Kiper, incredibly, has nine going in the first round in his latest mock draft. (He projects LSU junior Odell Beckham, Jr. to the Eagles at 22.)

Howie Roseman agrees with the sentiment that this is a strong class of wideouts, and must decide how much — if at all — that will impact some key decisions that are before him.

Read more »

What They’re Saying About the Eagles

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Here’s what the media are saying about the Eagles:

Most of the conversation today surrounds draft prospect Michael Sam, who could very well become the league’s  first openly-gay player. If you missed it, Peter King  pointed to the Eagles specifically as a team that would likely not hesitate to draft the Missouri product.

It could be that a liberal owner and progressive coach like Jeffrey Lurie and Chip Kelly of the Eagles will not care at all, and if he’s there in the fourth or fifth round will grab him.

When asked by Mike Sielski whether Sam’s announcement would affect the franchise’s willingness or unwillingness to draft him, a team spokesman responded, “Why would it change anything?” Read more »

Wake-Up Call: Kiper Through Eagle Eyes

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Mel Kiper Jr. held a conference call with media members Thursday and touched on several subjects that could interest Eagles fans. Some highlights:

(Note: I linked to some film of each of the players mentioned, courtesy of DraftBreakdown, in case you want to study any of them a bit more.)

– Kiper is very high on this wide receiver class. He has nine going in the first round alone, and thinks quality will still be there later in the draft.

“There’s going to be an opportunity I think at wide receiver to see guys in the third, fourth, fifth round get it done. That’s going to be a very deep position with 19 underclassmen coming out at that spot.” Read more »

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