Draft Buzz: Manziel Rumor, Another Safety Visit
With the draft 10 days away, here are some Eagles-related notes to share.
Let’s start with Peter King of The MMQB, who had a rumor/non-rumor about the Birds and Johnny Manziel:
There’s a rumor (apparently faulty) making the rounds about the Eagles moving up to try to get Johnny Manziel. I wouldn’t pass it along if the person who told me wasn’t smart and, to this point, reliable. But I just can’t see it, and I have someone who would know better than the rumor source telling me it absolutely won’t happen. Which seems smart to me, seeing that Nick Foles’ 27 touchdowns and two interceptions and 119.2 passer rating would be pretty damned foolish to throw out the window for Manziel. I just put it out there as an example of the kind of stuff that makes the rounds when so much of what happens at this time of year is designed to be a misdirection play. As Bills GM Doug Whaley said Friday, speaking to western New York reporters: “It’s finally one time where we can use you guys [reporters] to our advantage. There are things that you put out there to see if someone bites, and there are some things you put out there that are true. You have people read between the lines and you don’t want to show your hand. I’m sure everyone is doing the same thing.’’
My take? I would be surprised if the Eagles made a move up for Manziel. As we’ve gone over, they only have six picks, and by all accounts, this draft is loaded. There’s also the Nick Foles factor that King mentioned. Foles is signed through 2015, but is eligible to renegotiate after next season. The Eagles could add a QB at some point in the draft (especially if they’re re-thinking their evaluation of Matt Barkley a year in). But I wouldn’t expect them to trade up for one in the first round.
Kelly has made the point multiple times that you need two quality quarterbacks to be successful and you can never have too many. The Eagles’ actions have backed up that notion as they brought Michael Vick back last offseason and drafted Barkley in the fourth round. This offseason, when Mark Sanchez was released by the Jets, they pounced.
Kelly recruited Manziel to Oregon. If he’s there somehow at No. 22 (unlikely), things could get interesting. But I don’t see a trade-up happening.
Meanwhile, another draft visit to add to the list:
Add CB Dontae Johnson (NC St./6’2″ 1/10, 200) to #Eagles pre-draft visit list. Senior Bowl and #NFL Combine participant.
— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) April 28, 2014
Johnson (6-2, 200) ran a 4.45 at the combine and played his college ball with Earl Wolff. You can see he has excellent measurables in a number of areas:
He has versatility too, having started five games at cornerback last season.
Johnson projects as a Day 3 pick, according to CBSSports.com.