Eagles Draft Grades Start To Roll In

Eagles draft grades have started to roll in. Below is a roundup of what the national media are saying about the Birds’ selections. We’ll have more reaction during the week.

Dan Pompei of the National Football Post lists the Eagles as one of the teams that helped itself the most:

The first two picks, Lane Johnson and Zach Ertz, were right on. And the Eagles selected three players who each could have easily been chosen two rounds earlier in Matt Barkley (fourth), Earl Wolff (fifth) and Jordan Poyer (seventh). Said one personnel director, “No way should Barkley have fallen that far.”

ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. gives the Eagles a B+. He gave them an A for value and a B for needs:

Matt Barkley also piled up huge numbers versus Oregon, and was the first pick taken in Round 4 (I once said I thought Barkley was a future first pick — maybe I meant in Round 4?). Kelly wants competition at QB, and Barkley is going to come in ready to compete. Bennie Logan fits as a potential 3-4 DE or even a nose tackle, and Earl Wolff offers some depth at safety. They needed a corner and got another guy Kelly knows, Jordan Poyer from Oregon State. Joe Kruger isn’t fast, but he could provide a pass rush in this system. Overall, I like what the Eagles accomplished.

The Eagles were one of eight teams that got a B+ or better from Kiper.

ESPN.com’s Dan Graziano says the Eagles made the best pick in the division with their selection of Lane Johnson at No. 4 overall:

In the absence of any earth-shaking moves in the early rounds by NFC East teams, I’m going to have to go with the Eagles taking tackle Lane Johnson at No. 4. They probably could have traded down and out of the pick, but this was a draft in which six offensive linemen went in the first 11 picks, and the value of the third-best tackle with the fourth pick was worth hanging in there. After what happened to their offensive line with injuries in 2012, the Eagles were wise to load up there, taking an athletic player who can start at right tackle right away and maybe move to left tackle down the road once Jason Peters is done.

Stony Brook’s Miguel Maysonet made ESPN.com’s list of top-10 undrafted free agents. The Eagles agreed to terms with Maysonet.

Maysonet was one of our favorite Day 3 sleepers. He has a low center of gravity and runs with above-average balance and lateral agility. In addition, he brings some versatility as a pass catcher out of the backfield. It won’t be surprising if Maysonet is the next late-round/free-agent running back to become a big-time contributor in the league.

Elliot Harrison of NFL.com names the Eagles one of his three winners:

This club did more than just get great value in the fourth round. Matt Barkley aside, first-round selection Lane Johnson should start immediately. Meanwhile, not only will second-round choice Zach Ertz push tight end Brent Celek, he’ll make the offense more versatile overall. Third-round selection Bennie Logan provides ample insurance for the club’s free-agent investment in nose tackle Isaac Sopoaga.

With center Jason Kelce coming back from injury, and with Johnson now in the mix, that Eagles front five — which also includes Jason Peters, Evan Mathis and Todd Herremans — looks a whole lot better.

Don Banks of SI.com offers his thoughts on the Barkley pick:

In reality, what Saturday’s biggest draft headline means is Kelly and the Eagles are ready to fit their offense around what Barkley does best. He doesn’t have the biggest arm, and he probably isn’t the best guy to run a lot of read-option looks, but he doesn’t have to be a jackrabbit to direct an up-tempo attack. Kelly admired Barkley’s football smarts, his competitiveness, and his ability to see the field and make quick and accurate decisions. Think Tom Brady and you start to get the real model for what Kelly is after in his goal of running as many plays as possible in a game, and Barkley’s 40 time has little to do with the equation.

Chris Burke of SI.com thinks the Eagles got a steal in the seventh round with cornerback Jordan Poyer:

How did this happen? Poyer seemed to be firmly planted in the second tier of cornerbacks in this draft, below Dee Milliner, Desmond Trufant or Xavier Rhodes but certainly worthy of Day 2 consideration. Instead, Poyer somehow slipped into Round 7. Philadelphia won’t regret giving him a shot there.

Burke gives the Eagles an A- for their selection of Johnson:

Kelly will try to work his offense around the pieces he has, but adding even more athleticism to an already athletic group will make the transition that much easier.

Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com gives the Eagles a B- for the Johnson pick:

They have so many other issues, but he’s a good athlete who will be better in the NFL. I like the pick.

Jason Cole of Yahoo Sports calls Michael Vick one of his draft winners:

Like Rex Ryan, Vick was a winner Thursday when the Eagles drafted Lane Johnson to rebuild the offensive line. Like Ryan, things got even better in the second and fourth rounds. First, Philadelphia drafted tight end Zach Ertz, giving Vick another big-time weapon and a guy the Eagles can pair with Brent Celek for some tasty two-tight end formations. In the fourth round, the Eagles traded up to get Matt Barkley. Sure, Barkley may be no better than a backup, but he’s going to be competition for current No. 2 Nick Foles. In other words, the perception that the competition for time was between Vick and Foles just got really blurry. That can only help Vick.

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Eagles Add Nine Undrafted Free Agents

The Eagles made it official today, announcing that they’ve agreed to terms with nine undrafted free agents and released tight end Evan Moore.

Here’s some information on the players they added.

Miguel Maysonet, RB, Stony Brook – The 5-foot-9, 209-pounder ran for 1,964 yards and 21 touchdowns as a senior. In a game against Syracuse, he broke a 71-yard run and piled up 158 yards.

“He’s a solid back with some burst and explosion. He’s not on the national radar, but he’s a guy I get a kick out of,” said NFL Network’s Mike Mayock before the draft. “[I’m] not sure he’s going to get drafted, but he’s one of those guys that certainly has an opportunity to make a team.”

ESPN’s Todd McShay said Maysonet has a chance to be this year’s Alfred Morris. Morris, of course, ran for 1,613 yards and 13 touchdowns, while averaging 4.8 yards per carry as a rookie for the Redskins.

Here’s a YouTube cut-up from the Syracuse game:

Russell Shepard, WR, LSU – I probably shouldn’t list a position with him. Sheppard falls under the “athlete” category. He went to LSU as a dual-threat quarterback and saw time at multiple positions. He finished his career with 733 rushing yards and 565 receiving yards on 58 catches. Sheppard is 6-1, 195 and ran a 4.46 at his Pro Day, according to Gil Brandt of NFL.com. Brandt also reported that some teams are looking at him as a defensive back.

Brad Wing, P, LSU – The Eagles found everything in this class, including a controversial punter from Australia. According to Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, the LSU coaching staff basically told Wing (6-2, 205) not to come back to school even though he had two years of eligibility remaining.

“He’s a problem child,” one special-teams coach said. “I interviewed him at the combine. I think it was all con. I don’t think this guy is remorseful for any of it.”

“If it was me, only way I would take him is if we didn’t have anything invested in him. First time he (expletive) up he’d be out the door. There’s too many red flags on this guy.”

Wing’s transgressions reportedly include a fight and multiple failed drug tests. On the field, he was named first-team All-American by several publications in 2011.

Kyle Quinn, C, Arizona – There will be plenty of offensive line depth spots up for grabs with the Eagles. Quinn (6-3, 290) was a two-year starter at center for the Wildcats and snapped for Nick Foles in 2011.

Isaac Remington, DT, Oregon Chip Kelly was able to get his hands on at least one of his former players. Remington (6-6, 305) had 22 tackles, including four for loss last season. He was cited (but not charged) for a DUI and temporarily suspended by Kelly last season.

Damion Square, DL, Alabama – Kelly said he likes SEC defensive linemen. Square (6-2, 293) started 32 games for Nick Saban over the past three years. He looks to be a little small to play nose tackle, but we’ll see where Kelly thinks he fits.

Jake Knott, LB, Iowa State – The 6-2, 243-pounder was a first-team All-Big 12 selection as a senior despite missing the final four games with a shoulder injury. Will likely compete for a depth spot at inside linebacker.

Matt Tobin, OL, Iowa – The Eagles added the 6-6, 290-pound guard, according to multiple reports. Tobin was 6-feet as a junior in high school, but grew six inches in two years. He was a two-year starter with the Hawkeyes.

Matt Tucker, RB, TCU – At 6-0, 221, Tucker ran a 4.55 at the Combine. He was a rotational player in college, never rushing for more than 709 yards in a season.

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Eagles Snag CB Jordan Poyer In 7th Round

With their second seventh-round pick, the Eagles grabbed another Pac-12 player who has competed against Chip Kelly.

Oregon State cornerback Jordan Poyer (6-0, 191) was No. 85 on Mike Mayock’s top-100 list. But the Eagles were able to get him with pick No. 218.

Poyer made the switch from safety to cornerback after his freshman season. He finished last year with seven interceptions, tied for second-most in the nation.

Poyer ran a 4.54 at the Combine in Indianapolis.

“Like I always say, I may not be the biggest guy out there, maybe [not] the most athletic guy out there, but I’m a football player,” Poyer said. “I understand the game. I understand schemes. I understand offenses. I know my body. I know who I’m going against. So I use that to the best of my advantage and it makes me the player I am.”

There was also an off-the-field incident at a bar involving Poyer.

“It wasn’t a fight,” he said. “It was more just me being dumb. I wasn’t 21, going into a bar and kind of refused to leave and then got 60 days banned from the bar, got kicked out of the bar and wasn’t allowed to come back. I came back and it was just a bad situation. And the media kind of blew it up as a fight, but it wasn’t. It was just kind of a dumb situation to be in. I put myself in a bad situation. But I learned from it.”

Poyer was a great two-sport athlete in high school. He was drafted by the Florida Marlins in the 42nd round, but decided to pursue football. Poyer met Kelly as a high school junior and played against him every year.

As for fit, Poyer said he played both outside and in the slot.

“We played a lot of man and zone,” he said. “My senior year was kind of when we opened our defensive playbook a lot. I came inside in the nickel. I probably played more snaps in the nickel than I did on the outside my senior year. It was a lot of man. It was a lot of zone. A lot of different combinations of coverages. I feel like the defense that I played in at Oregon State is really going to help me transition over to the NFL.”

Many projected Poyer to go on Day 2. Instead, he stayed in front of the television for six-plus rounds and was passed over on 217 occasions.

“I kind of wanted to have an idea of who would pass me up because I kind of use that stuff when I play,” he said. “I’ll remember who passed me up and I’ll use that and let it fuel me.”

EAGLES CLOSE WITH DAVID KING

The Eagles used their final pick, No. 239 overall, on Oklahoma defensive lineman David King. King (6-5, 286) projects as a 5-technique defensive end. Kelly said he ran a 4.64 at his workout.

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Day 3: Live Eagles/NFL Draft Chat

Join Tim and Sheil for a live chat during Day 3 of the NFL Draft.

Eagles Day 2 Draft Cheat Sheet

The Eagles are scheduled to pick at No. 35 (second round) and No. 67 (third round) tonight.

The draft kicks off at 6:30, and once again, we’ll host a live chat. Obviously, the picks could change, depending on trades, so here’s a list of potential targets, broken down by position.

QUARTERBACKS

Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia – We wrote about him earlier. Every team passed on Smith in the first round. The question now for the Eagles: Did they just not like him in the first round, or do they not like him at all? There are only two picks before the Birds select at No. 35. The Jaguars could take Smith at No. 33, or a team could move up. If the Birds pass on him at No. 35, it’s safe to say he’s probably just not on their board at all.

Other quarterbacks, like Syracuse’s Ryan Nassib and USC’s Matt Barkley could go off the board today, but I don’t see them being fits for the Eagles.

WIDE RECEIVERS

Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee – If you want a good sleeper at No. 35, keep Hunter’s name in mind. He has a rare blend of size (6-4, 196) and speed (4.44). Greg Cosell of NFL Films recently compared his body type and skill set to A.J. Green. Hunter displayed poor hands in college, but he has tremendous upside and would complement what the Eagles already have on their roster.

Robert Woods, WR, USC – Woods (6-0, 201) had 32 touchdowns in three seasons with the Trojans and caught 20 balls for 183 yards and three scores in three games against Oregon. He does not have elite speed (4.51), but can probably line up inside or outside and has experience as a returner. If the Eagles trade down in the second, or if Woods lasts to the third, he could be an option.

Marquise Goodwin, WR, Texas – An elite athlete, Goodwin (5-9, 183) ran a 4.27 40 at the Combine and competed in the Olympics in the long jump, finishing 10th. He is not a polished receiver, but can use his speed in a variety of ways – catching the ball, running the ball and on special teams. Obviously not the biggest guy, but Kelly has to be intrigued by Goodwin’s speed and versatility. He’d be a potential target in the third round.

Ryan Swope, WR, Texas A&M – Very productive college player with 233 catches and 23 touchdowns the past three seasons. Swope (6-0, 205) ran a 4.34 40 and would be a tough cover in the slot. A very serious issue though is his history of concussions. According to the Houston Chronicle, he’s suffered four. Could be a third-round option, though, and might fall to Day 3.

Others: Keenan Allen (Cal), Da’Rick Rogers (Tennessee Tech).

TIGHT ENDS

Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford – Ertz (6-5, 249) had 69 catches for 898 yards and six touchdowns last season. And Kelly knows his talents all too well. Against Oregon last season, Ertz caught 11 balls for 106 yards and a score. He’s drawn comparisons to Jason Witten and could be an option for the Eagles at No. 35.

Travis Kelce, TE, Cincinnati – The Eagles have done a lot of homework on tight ends, including Jason’s brother, Travis. Kelce (6-5, 255) had off-the-field issues at Cincinnati, and sports hernia surgery kept him from working out at the Combine. But on the field, he presents a versatile skill set, with the ability to block, make plays in the vertical passing game and rack up yards after the catch. Expected to go in the second or third rounds.

Gavin Escobar, TE, San Diego State – The Eagles reportedly had him in for an official visit, and Escobar (6-6, 254) could be an option in the third round. He caught 42 balls for 543 yards and six touchdowns last year. Because of his length, Escobar can create matchup problems for opposing defenses.

Others: Vance McDonald (Rice), Jordan Reed (Florida).

OFFENSIVE LINEMEN

Brian Schwenke, G/C, California – Just because the Eagles added Lane Johnson doesn’t mean they’re done adding offensive linemen. Schwenke (6-3, 314) played against Kelly in the Pac-12 and tested well at the Combine, showing good athleticism. He can play guard or center and has a “mean streak” according to Cosell. Could be a third-round option.

Dallas Thomas, OL, Tennessee – One more offensive lineman the Eagles could take a look at on Day 2. Thomas (6-5, 300) spent two years at tackle, before switching to guard his senior season. He was reportedly one of the team’s 30 official visits to the NovaCare Complex.

Others: Terron Armstead (tackle, Arkansas-Pine Bluff), Brian Winters (guard, Kent State), Menelik Watson (tackle, Florida State).

DEFENSIVE LINEMEN

Jesse Williams, DL, Alabama – We know the Eagles are in the market for versatile defensive linemen, and Williams (6-3, 323) falls into that category, with the ability to play nose tackle or the 5-technique. Keep an eye on the 49ers though. They could take Williams with the 34th pick, one ahead of the Eagles.

Margus Hunt, DL, SMU – If Kelly really likes long players on defense, he has to be intrigued by Hunt (6-8, 277). A physical specimen, Hunt ran a 4.60 at the Combine and benched 225 pounds 38 times. Originally coming to America from Estonia with track and field aspirations, Hunt is still relatively new to the game and will be 26 in July. But he had eight sacks last season, blocked 17 (!!!) kicks in college and has a blend of length and athleticism that is unmatched. Hunt projects as a 5-technique in a 3-4 and figures to go off the board some time in the second round.

John Jenkins, DL, Georgia – Kelly said earlier this offseason that the reason he likes size on defense is because big people beat up little people. Jenkins (6-4, 346) is one of the bigger people in the draft, but he has some athleticism. Could certainly line up at nose tackle, but showed the ability to play the 5-technique also. Could be a second- or third-round target.

LINEBACKERS

Tank Carradine, OLB/DE Florida State – At 6-4, 276 (34 3/4-inch arms), he has size and versatility. But Carradine suffered a torn ACL in November, which could explain why he’s still available. And he might be a better fit as a 4-3 defensive end. The Eagles had him in for an official visit to the team facility. Kelly said Thursday night that Dion Jordan was an option with the No. 4 pick. While Carradine’s a different player, perhaps he will be the outside linebacker the Eagles end up with. He’s likely to go in the second round. Update: Bad news on Carradine’s medical. Could cause him to drop.

Jamie Collins, OLB, Southern Mississippi – In addition to his height (6-3, 250), Collins has long arms (33 3/4 inches). He had 20 tackles for loss and 10 sacks as a senior and tested well at the Combine (4.64 40, 41.5-inch vertical).

Cornelius Washington, OLB, Georgia – Production did not match the talent. Washington (6-4, 264) tested well at the Combine, running a 4.55 40 and benching 225 pounds 36 times. But he only had 22 tackles and half-a-sack last season for the Bulldogs. He also has a DUI on his record. Could be a third-round target.

Quanterus Smith, OLB, Western Kentucky – He had 12.5 sacks through 10 games last season before tearing his ACL. The Eagles had Smith (6-5, 250) in for an official visit. Could be a third-round target.

Arthur Brown, ILB, Kansas State – If the Eagles spend a second-round pick on Brown (6-0, 241 and brother of Bryce), it would fall in the “best player available” category. With Mychal Kendricks and DeMeco Ryans on the roster, they have starting inside linebackers in place. But they don’t have a lot of depth, and the Eagles could find Brown’s production and versatility appealing.

CORNERBACKS

Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State – Have to think he won’t be on the board for long. Taylor (5-11, 192) ran a 4.39 40 at the Combine, and many projected him to be a first-round pick. Four cornerbacks were taken Thursday, and there figures to be a run on the next tier in the second round. Taylor could be an option at No. 35.

Darius Slay, CB, Mississippi StatePro Football Talk reported recently that Slay is dealing with a torn meniscus, which could affect his stock. With his size (6-0, 192) and speed (4.36 40), Slay will be an attractive option, if healthy. The Eagles reportedly had him in for an official visit.

Blidi Wreh-Wilson, CB, UConn – The Eagles signed Cary Williams and Bradley Fletcher, who are 6-1 and 6-0, respectively. Wreh-Wilson (6-1, 195) is one of the longer cornerback prospects available, and he ran a 4.53 at the Combine. Could be an option at No. 35, or perhaps more likely, if the Eagles trade down.

Others: Jordan Poyer (Oregon State), Sanders Commings (Georgia), Robert Alford (SE Louisiana State).

SAFETIES

Johnathan Cyprien, S, Florida International – Will the Eagles use a second-round pick on a safety for the third time in four years? If so, Cyprien could fit the bill. The 6-foot, 217-pounder possesses an array of skills and could be on the short list at No. 35.

D.J. Swearinger, S. South Carolina – Another safety to keep in mind. Swearinger is a big hitter and was a four-year starter for the Gamecocks. At 5-10, 208 (4.67 40), he might not possess the measurables that Kelly is looking for, but Swearinger could still be a target in the second or third rounds.

Phillip Thomas, S, Fresno State – He led the nation with eight interceptions last year and also showed the ability to play up near the line of scrimmage with 12 tackles for loss, third among all defensive backs. Thomas (6-0, 208) reportedly had a private workout with the Eagles. Could be a third-round target.

Others: Bacarri Rambo (Georgia), JJ Wilcox (Georgia Southern), Shamark Thomas (Syracuse).

** Note: I did not include any running backs on the list. I’ve been wrong before, but don’t see the Eagles going that route until Day 3.

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Eagles Wake-Up Call: Five Options At No. 35

The Eagles landed offensive tackle Lane Johnson with the No. 4 pick.

But there’s still plenty of work to be done. Here are five options for Birds with the 35th pick:

Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia – I’ll admit I didn’t see this coming. The West Virginia QB spent all of Thursday night in the green room without a team taking him. Only one signal-caller was selected in the first round, and that was Florida State’s EJ Manuel, who went to the Bills at No. 16. The Eagles did plenty of homework on Smith, and as I’ve written, there are likely aspects of his game that Kelly finds appealing. There are two picks before the Eagles are on the clock: Jacksonville and San Francisco. The Jaguars could certainly take Smith, or a team could trade up. If the Birds have the chance to take Smith at 35 and pass, it’s probably fair to say he’s not on their board at all. And that has to be considered a possibility at this point.

Jonathan Cyprien, S, Florida International – I thought he would go in the first round, but Cyprien is still available. Three safeties went off the board on Thursday: Texas’ Kenny Vaccaro (No. 15 to the Saints), LSU’s Eric Reid (No. 18 to the 49ers) and Florida’s Matt Elam (No. 32 to the Ravens). Cyprien (6-0, 217) and South Carolina’s DJ Swearinger are probably the top two safeties still available. It’s a need area for the Eagles, and there are still good players on the board.

Tank Carradine, OLB/DL Florida State – I was way off on my projection here, thinking Carradine would go in the top half of the first round. At 6-4, 276 (34 3/4-inch arms), he has size and versatility. But Carradine suffered a torn ACL in November, which could explain why he’s still available. The Eagles had him in for an official visit to the team facility. Chip Kelly said Thursday night that Dion Jordan was an option with the No. 4 pick. While Carradine’s a different player, perhaps he will be the outside linebacker the Eagles end up with. Update: Bad news on Carradine’s medical could cause him to drop.

Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State – He could be the best cornerback on the board. Taylor (5-11, 192) ran a 4.39 40 at the Combine, and many projected him to be a first-round pick. Four cornerbacks were taken Thursday night: Alabama’s Dee Milliner (No. 9 to the Jets), Houston’s D.J. Hayden (No. 12 to the Raiders), Washington’s Desmond Trufant (No. 22 to the Falcons) and Florida State’s Xavier Rhodes (No. 25 to the Vikings).

Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford – The Eagles did plenty of work on tight ends during the pre-draft process. Ertz (6-5, 249) had 69 catches for 898 yards and six touchdowns last season. And Kelly knows his talents all too well. Against Oregon last season, Ertz caught 11 balls for 106 yards and a score. He could be an option at No. 35.

WHAT YOU MISSED

T-Mac has the full story on the Birds going with Johnson.

And here is what Johnson had to say about being selected fourth.

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING

Tommy Lawlor of IgglesBlitz.com offers his take on Johnson:

Johnson is a great athlete. His Combine workout would have been solid for a running back or linebacker, but it was phenomenal for an offensive tackle. He ran faster in the 40-yard dash than Anquan Boldin did at the Combine. Johnson is also strong, agile and explosive. His arms are 35 inches long, giving him an ideal frame for the offensive tackle position. Don’t think of Johnson as a finesse athlete. He has a big-time mean streak. He loves to run block and wants to bury his opponent in the ground. Johnson has excellent potential and could develop into a Pro Bowl player.

Rich Hofmann of the Daily News thinks the Eagles made the right choice:

I like it. We all have seen this team, in past seasons, attempt to prove that they were the smartest people in the room. To be fair, they did some smart things in the past. The way they have manipulated their picks in the later rounds of the draft really has been smart and profitable.

But in their first big spot together, Roseman and Kelly chose a solid, sensible guy who fit both the coach’s philosophy and the long-term needs of the franchise. We don’t know if Johnson can play, obviously, but the reviews have been good and the athletic potential is interesting.

COMING UP

More reaction on the Johnson pick, and we’ll look ahead to the rest of the draft.

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Johnson Goes From Junior College To No. 4 Pick

When the Dolphins traded up to the No. 3 spot, Lane Johnson thought he was headed to Miami.

And he wasn’t the only one. Jake Long signed with St. Louis in free agency, and the Dolphins desperately needed an offensive tackle to protect Ryan Tannehill. But when Roger Goodell got to the podium to announce the No. 3 pick, the name that came out of his mouth was Oregon outside linebacker Dion Jordan.

“So after that took place, I knew I had a good vibe for Philly,” Johnson said. “After I got a phone call from a Pennsylvania number, I knew it was time.”

It’s been quite the journey for the Eagles’ first-round pick. He started his college career at Kilgore (junior) college, playing quarterback and weighing 220 pounds. He started bulking up and caught the attention of Bob Stoops and the Oklahoma Sooners.

They tried him out at tight end and then defensive end. But Johnson continued to grow, and because of injuries, they moved him to the offensive line.

“The toughest was actually from quarterback to tight end,” Johnson said. “From being such a glorified position and then going to tight end where your hand’s in the dirt, and there’s a lot of physicality involved, that was probably the toughest transition.

“Going to tackle my first year, junior year, was a learning experience, and it kind of felt weird because I had been a skill position player my whole life. And then going to tackle was just kind of a weird experience. Going into my senior year, I knew I had the talent. I just kept on working and developing, and things went well for me.”

That qualifies as an understatement.

Johnson was on the radar of NFL teams back in January, but he had no clue back then that he would be a first-round pick. The pre-draft process was crucial for him.

“One of my main areas of focus was to have a good Senior Bowl,” Johnson said. “I wanted to show people that I’m a good football player and not just a test athlete. And so once I had a good week there, I knew the Combine was going to be kind of icing on the cake with the tests and numbers and stuff. So it’s all part of the process, and it’s finally over.”

In Indianapolis, Johnson put together perhaps the most impressive testing performance ever by an offensive lineman.

“I think Lane Johnson had the freakiest Combine in the history of our coverage of the Combine,” said NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock.

He ran a 4.71 40 and displayed a 34-inch vertical (more details here).

Chip Kelly said the Combine was just part of the evaluation and stressed that Johnson is far from a finished product, going as far as to call him “raw.” But he explained that’s part of what the Eagles loved about him – his upside.

Asked if he’s ready to start right away, Johnson said, “I think I am. Yes sir.”

Kelly made a point to mention that jobs will be won and lost on the field. But barring injuries, the Eagles’ offensive line will likely feature Johnson at right tackle, Todd Herremans at right guard, Jason Kelce at center, Evan Mathis at left guard and Jason Peters at left tackle.

Johnson played right tackle his junior year and moved to the left side as a senior. Asked if he has a preference, he said, “I really don’t care. I try to be as balanced as possible. Whatever Coach Kelly and them need, I’m going to do.”

One part of the Eagles’ program that shouldn’t be too tough for Johnson to adjust to is tempo. Oklahoma ran 77.3 plays per game last season, while Kelly’s Oregon squad ran 81.5.

From junior college to the No. 4 pick, from Kilgore, Texas to Philadelphia, Johnson is excited about taking the next step.

“I’m ready to get started,” he said. “And I’m very fortunate to be with the Eagles.”

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Live Eagles/NFL Draft Chat: Round One

Join Tim and Sheil for a live chat during the first round of the NFL draft. They’ll be providing updates live from the NovaCare Complex.

To comment, you must log in using either your Facebook or Twitter account.

Eagles Draft Essentials: Picks, Times, Etc.

Some Eagles draft essentials for you to keep handy the next several days. Note that we’ll do our best to keep this post updated if they make trades.

EAGLES PICKS

1st round (No. 4)
2nd round (No. 35)
3rd round (No. 67)
4th round (No. 101)
5th round (No. 136)
7th round (No. 210)
7th round (No. 212)
7th round (No. 218)
7th round (No. 239)

TIMES

Round 1: 8 p.m. Thursday
Rounds 2 and 3: 6:30 p.m. Friday
Rounds 4-7: Noon Saturday

Teams get 10 minutes in between picks in the first round, seven minutes in the second round and five minutes in rounds three through seven.

The draft will be broadcast on both NFL Network and ESPN.

BIRDS 24/7

We’ll have a live chat during all seven rounds of the draft. Some previous posts worth mentioning:

* Draft predictions from McManus and Kapadia.
* Mock draft from Kapadia.
* Top-40 cheat sheet on defensive prospects.
* Top-40 cheat sheet on offensive prospects.
* Day 2 Eagles draft targets: 15 names to know.
* Trade value notes if the Eagles move down.

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Mock Draft: Eagles Go With Floyd At No. 4

Because I needed to do something to kill the time between now and 8 p.m., here’s my one and only mock draft.

I’ll set the over/under on correct picks at seven.

1. Kansas City Chiefs – Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan

It sounds like Andy Reid and the coaches want Fisher, while Kansas City’s scouting team prefers Texas A&M’s Luke Joeckel. It didn’t take long for that whole “final say” conversation to take place in KC, huh? The guess here is that Reid wins out and the Chiefs go with Fisher.

2. Jacksonville Jaguars – Dion Jordan, OLB, Oregon

Given what we saw with the Seahawks’ defense, I have to think Gus Bradley is in love with Jordan. A long, versatile defender who can drop back in coverage or rush the passer. At the very least, he’s a movable chess piece. And the upside is there as a double-digit sack guy.

3. Miami Dolphins (TRADE with Oakland Raiders) – Luke Joeckel, Texas A&M

The Dolphins got their franchise quarterback in Ryan Tannehill last year, yet they lost Jake Long to St. Louis in free agency. Tannehill is the team’s No. 1 asset, and they have to invest in protecting him. Joeckel is one of the cleanest prospects in the draft, and the Dolphins have 11 overall picks, including five in the first three rounds. The Raiders, meanwhile, only have three selections in the first five rounds. They move back to No. 12 and pick up some extra selections.

4. Philadelphia Eagles – Sharrif Floyd, DL, Florida

My guess is that the Eagles have Joeckel, Fisher and Jordan as the top-three picks on their board. But what happens in this scenario? The truth is it’s wide open. Oklahoma offensive tackle Lane Johnson, BYU DE/OLB Ziggy Ansah and Utah DT Star Lotulelei could all be options. But I’m going with Floyd.

As we mentioned yesterday, there is little certainty when it comes to the Eagles’ new defensive scheme. The only reason Floyd wouldn’t fit is if they were running a two-gap 3-4. But he can line up in a variety of places and is only 20-years-old. Floyd, combined with Fletcher Cox, would give the Eagles a great base from which to build their defense. If Howie Roseman and company are committed to taking the best player available, I think Floyd’s the pick.

5. Detroit Lions – Ziggy Ansah, DE, BYU

They’ve got to beat Aaron Rodgers and the Packers to compete in the NFC North. The Lions have some talented interior pass-rushers, but adding Ansah to the mix at defensive end gives them another dimension. He’s 6-5, 271 with 35 1/8-inch arms. The only thing Ansah lacks is experience. You take Ansah here and hope that Jim Washburn can mold him into a Pro Bowler. All the physical tools are there.

6. San Diego Chargers (TRADE with Cleveland Browns) – Lane Johnson, Oklahoma

See what I wrote above at No. 3? The same rules pretty much apply with the Chargers and Philip Rivers. San Diego moves up from No. 11 and takes Johnson. Most people don’t see him slipping this far, and the Eagles could very well take Johnson at No. 4. But there is some risk involved. He’s not as clean a prospect as Joeckel or Fisher, even though Johnson has superior athleticism. San Diego banks on his upside and grabs him at No. 6.

7. Arizona Cardinals – Jonathan Cooper, OG, North Carolina

They acquired Carson Palmer via trade, have Larry Fitzgerald and drafted Michael Floyd last year. Arizona has plenty of talent on defense, but it needs to build up front. While the Cardinals would probably love for Johnson to tall to them, chances are he goes in the top-six. Cooper is considered an elite athlete at the position and falls in the “best player available” category.

8. Buffalo Bills – Ryan Nassib, QB, Syracuse

I’ll admit falling victim to the rumors here. But the Bills need a quarterback, and most have Nassib among the top-three prospects at the position. It feels like a reach, but it makes sense for his college coach, Doug Marrone, to take a chance on him in the pros.

9. New York Jets – Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia

I know there’s talk of him taking a major plunge, but I just don’t see it. The Jets have two picks in the top-13 and have a chance to take quite possibly the best QB prospect in the draft here. I know Marty Mornhinweg takes a lot of heat, but I actually think he knows what he’s doing.

10. Tennessee Titans – Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri

He’s in the conversation as potentially the best defensive lineman in the draft. Richardson fits well as a 3-technique (4-3 defensive tackle) and provides some versatility up front.

11. Cleveland Browns (TRADE with San Diego Chargers) – Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia

He’s a big-time wild card. But the Browns actually have some talent on their roster, and Austin could give their offense another dimension. To be honest, it would not shock me if they stayed at No. 6 and took Austin, but if he’s still on the board at No. 11, I think he’s the pick.

12. Oakland Raiders (TRADE with Miami Dolphins) – Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah

There are not a lot of strengths on the Raiders’ roster so they definitely go with best player available, which happens to be Lotulelei. He provides a strong, disruptive force at defensive tackle for Oakland.

13, New York Jets – Barkevious Mingo, OLB, LSU

There’s been quite a bit of buzz about him going sooner, and that very well could be the case. Or the Jets could choose to take Mingo with the No. 9 pick. In Mingo, Rex Ryan gets a versatile outside linebacker, who could eventually become one of the better pass-rushers from this draft.

14. Carolina Panthers – Tank Carradine, DE, FSU

Roseman said last week that there are not a lot of pass-rushers in this draft, so expect them to go high. Carradine is my first-round surprise. He has been a bit under-the-radar since he tore his ACL in November, but many consider him among the top pass-rushing prospects available. He and Luke Kuechly give Sean McDermott a couple of nice young pieces on defense.

15. New Orleans Saints – Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia

Fascinating prospect. Played in the SEC and led the nation in sacks, tackles for loss and forced fumbles. Yet he doesn’t have the measurables and has the spinal stenosis issue. Jones’ stock will tell us a lot about what teams think about his medical, and how they weigh tape vs. testing. The Saints are switching to a 3-4 and get a productive edge-rusher at No. 15.

16. St. Louis Rams – Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama

The Rams have a pair of first-round picks at 16 and 22. St. Louis added Jake Long in free agency and continues the offensive line upgrade with one of the draft’s cleanest prospects.

17. Pittsburgh Steelers – Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama

Back-to-back Alabama players off the board. The Steelers could use an infusion of youth and talent in the secondary. I think concerns over Milliner’s injuries were overblown. He suffered the torn labrum during last season and still played in the final four games, while managing to participate at the Combine. He’ll be a nice pick-up for the Steelers here.

18. Dallas Cowboys – Kenny Vaccaro, CB, Texas

They focused on upgrading at cornerback last offseason and continue beefing up the secondary with the addition of Vaccaro, who is thought of by many as the draft’s top safety.

19. New York Giants – D.J. Hayden, CB, Houston

Doesn’t it seem like the Giants always could use a corner? Hayden nearly lost his life after a collision during practice last November, but it sounds like he’s ready to continue his career in the NFL. Mike Mayock and Greg Cosell both have him rated as their top corner prospect, ahead of Milliner.

20. Chicago Bears – D.J. Fluker, OL, Alabama

Have back-to-back D.J.’s ever been selected in the draft? Someone get Elias Sports Bureau on the phone. The Bears added some pieces on the offensive line in free agency. They continue the upgrade and get a right tackle here in Fluker.

21. Cincinnati Bengals – Jonathan Cyprien, S, Florida International

This one just makes too much sense. The Bengals have shown pre-draft interest in Cyprien, and they need safety help. Some analysts believe he’ll end up being better than Vaccaro when all is said and done.

22. St. Louis Rams – Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee

The Rams’ philosophy here has to be giving Sam Bradford the best chance for success. They upgraded the offensive line with the earlier pick and get a pass-catcher here in Patterson. He’s considered a bit raw, but has a unique blend of size (6-2) and speed (4.42).

23. Minnesota Vikings – Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State

They are another team with two first-round picks. The Vikings have to compete with Rodgers, Matthew Stafford and Jay Cutler six times a year. Upgrading the secondary makes sense, especially given the strong group of corners available. Rhodes (6-1, 210) ran a 4.43 at the Combine and should be able to come in and start right away.

24. Indianapolis Colts – Justin Pugh, OL, Syracuse

The Council Rock South product sneaks into the first round. He played tackle in college and could get a look there in the pros, or he could make the switch to guard. Protecting Andrew Luck is Indy’s No. 1 priority.

25. Minnesota Vikings – Bjoern Werner, OL, Florida State

Doesn’t bring a lot of versatility to the table, and many believe his teammate, Carradine, has more upside. But the Vikings need to add pieces up front for the future, and Werner fits the bill as a 4-3 defensive end.

26. Green Bay Packers – Datone Jones, DL, UCLA

The Packers are in need of defensive linemen, and Jones is a productive 5-technique with good size (6-4, 283).

27. Houston Texans – Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame

I had a tough time figuring out where to mock Eifert, and he very well could go higher. At 6-6, with 4.68 speed and a 35.5-inch vertical, he’ll be a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses and give Matt Schaub another weapon to work with.

28. Denver Broncos – Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State

If a team really likes EJ Manuel, this could be a spot to trade back into the first round. The Broncos signed Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie to a one-year deal, but assuming they stay put, they take advantage of a strong corner class.

29. New England Patriots – Keenan Allen, WR, Cal

They lost Wes Welker, but added Danny Amendola in free agency. Allen gives Tom Brady another weapon. And unlike some of the other receivers in the class, he should be a “plug-and-play” prospect.

30. Atlanta Falcons – Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington

They could be interested in moving up for a top-level corner, but Trufant was a four-year starter and ran a 4.38 at the Combine. The Falcons know they’re close. He should be able to come in and contribute right away.

31. San Francisco 49ers – Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina

They lost Isaac Sopoaga and Ricky Jean-Francois in free agency. The 49ers add the 6-3, 313-pound defensive lineman, who can line up in multiple spots along the front.

32. Baltimore Ravens – Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia

The Ravens aren’t afraid of talented linebackers with off-the-field issues, are they? Ogletree fills a need and is good value at the end of the first round.

Follow Sheil Kapadia on Twitter and e-mail him at skapadia@phillymag.com.
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