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.