Eagles Draft Thread: 4/28
Between now and the draft, we’ll have daily threads with the latest mocks, buzz and relevant links. Check back throughout the day for updates.
4:14 p.m.: Titans head coach Ken Whisenhunt and GM Ruston Webster met with the media today. Some notes:
Whisenhunt says Titans would adopt some spread elements if they took Mariota. This all sounds like nonsense.
— Gregg Rosenthal (@greggrosenthal) April 28, 2015
Webster says the Titans like both QBs so what the Bucs do has no impact on them. Please.
— Gregg Rosenthal (@greggrosenthal) April 28, 2015
Ruston on value of a QB or upside of guy like Leonard Williams: “If you think a player is a franchise QB, that supersedes everything else.” — Jeff Darlington (@JeffDarlington) April 28, 2015
I’m with Rosenthal here. It sure sounds like the Titans are trying pretty hard to convince everyone that they’re willing to take Marcus Mariota. That message has been spread quite a bit in the past 48 hours.
My feeling is that it’s a leverage play. I think it’s pretty clear by now that the Titans want to trade down. And if they stay put, I personally think they’ll draft someone other than Mariota.
3 p.m.: From T-Mac:
Two days until the draft. Is the Eagles-Mariota dream dead? No sir, don’t believe it is.
— Tim McManus (@Tim_McManus) April 28, 2015
I’m hearing the Browns would still like to acquire him, but it’s not likely to happen. Bradford is represented by Tom Condon, who represented two former Browns first-round quarterbacks: Tim Couch and Brady Quinn. When Mike Holmgren wanted to conduct a private workout with Bradford in 2010, he was turned down, a source said. Condon has not had good experiences with his quarterbacks in Cleveland, and likely doesn’t want Bradford to end up here. What’s more, there’s still some tension between the Browns and Condon after Cleveland recently thought they had a deal with him for Jordan Cameron, who ultimately signed with Miami instead.
12:04 p.m.: Field Yates of ESPN.com lays out a potential trade scenario for the Eagles.
Possible deal: Philadelphia trades quarterback Sam Bradford, pick No. 20, a 2016 first-round pick and a 2016 fourth-round pick for pick No. 2 Analysis: No matter how much Eagles coach Chip Kelly downplays the possibility of trading up for Mariota — the quarterback he recruited to Oregon as the perfect fit for his offense — speculation will persist until Mariota lands elsewhere. He would be the ideal piston to rev the Eagles’ offensive engine. Bradford was recently acquired in a trade, and I’m of the mind that the team genuinely believes he can be the long-term starter in Philly. But he’d likely need to be shipped off in this deal.
11:33 a.m.: Todd McShay of ESPN.com has the Eagles’ five biggest draft needs as S, WR, OG, CB, QB.
In Sam Bradford, Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow, Philadelphia has three first-round picks and two Heisman Trophy winners on its QB depth chart. But none of those three players is a sure bet to be the Eagles’ franchise QB — Bradford is the presumptive 2015 starter, but he’s a free agent after the season and has yet to be consistently productive or healthy in the NFL. I’m still not ready to rule out the possibility of the Eagles moving up to draft Marcus Mariota.
8 a.m.: Peter King of The MMQB mocks Arizona State safety Damarious Randall to the Eagles at No. 20:
Very close to two others here: Jaelen Strong or nimble Oregon tackle Jake Fisher. I just want to drive WIP radio crazy; that’s all. I’ll be listening for the gasp from the crowd at the draft party in Philadelphia if the little-known Randall is the pick. “WHO?!!!!! KELLY, YOU’RE NUTS!!!!!” Well, Philadelphians, I’ll tell you this much, to assuage your anger, if it helps: Randall’s become a sexy pick late in round one over the past couple of weeks. Chip Kelly knows he’ll be able to score enough points, and he knows he can get useable receivers down the line. He wants a player with a defensive presence who has a chance to make plays somewhere on D, and the Eagles think Randall can do that.
Many analysts seem to love Randall. Taking him in the first round seems like a giant risk to me for these reasons. Meanwhile, Greg A. Bedard of The MMQB mocks who teams should take, and he projects Alabama safety Landon Collins to the Eagles:
Stock up on receivers later. Complete the overhaul of that terrible secondary with the draft’s best safety. Pair him with FS Malcolm Jenkins, and the Eagles may be cooking with gas.
I think I’ve made my feelings about Collins as a potential target pretty clear here. I’d be stunned if the Eagles took him.
7:47 a.m.: Bill Barnwell of Grantland mocks a bunch of different trades. I’m pretty sure everyone here would sign off on the hypothetical deal he outlines between the Eagles and Bucs:
Buccaneers send: 2015-1-1,1 2016-3, Vincent Jackson Eagles send: 2015-1-20, 2015-4-113, 2016-1, 2017-4 (conditional), Evan Mathis, Sam Bradford, and Brandon Boykin The Eagles also send a fair amount of talent to Tampa Bay as part of the trade, albeit mostly in players they don’t really seem to want. They would have little need for Sam Bradford if they traded for Mariota or Jameis Winston, so he would give the Buccaneers a viable quarterback of the present with some upside in the years to come. Evan Mathis would be a massive upgrade for one of the league’s worst guard pairings, and Brandon Boykin gives the Bucs one of football’s best slot cornerbacks. He’s also more likely to get a shot to play outside, as he desires.
7:35 a.m.: ESPN’s Chris Mortensen has been pretty adamant that Sam Bradford isn’t going anywhere.
Eagles acquired Bradford to be their QB. No trade pawn. He’d only sign ext w Philly with no-trade clause. Wants to play for Chip & Shurmur — Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) April 28, 2015
7:22 a.m.: A couple interesting nuggets here:
9. Byron Jones could go higher than projected, in part because so many of the CBs in his range have off field concerns, & he’s whistle clean — Dan Pompei (@danpompei) April 27, 2015
6. You may have heard Trae Waynes could go top 10. But based on people I’ve spoken with, I’ll be very surprised if that happens. — Dan Pompei (@danpompei) April 27, 2015
Is there a chance that Michigan State CB Trae Waynes could be there at No. 20? Or that UConn CB Byron Jones is gone by the time the Eagles are on the clock?
7:03 a.m.: In an ESPN.com mock, Phil Sheridan took UCF WR Breshad Perriman at No. 20:
I don’t think the Eagles will take Perriman because I really don’t expect him to be on the board when they pick at No. 20. But when the 6-foot-2, 212-pound Perriman — who has run sub-4.3 times in the 40-yard dash — slipped past Houston and Cleveland, there was no hesitation here. I was leaning toward UConn cornerback/freakish athlete Byron Jones, but a receiver with Perriman’s size and speed would be irresistible to Chip Kelly. Put it this way: Perriman represents an upgrade from the departed Jeremy Maclin.
6:55 a.m.: Doug Farrar of SI.com takes a look at some needs and possibilities for the Birds:
Kelly has said over and over that he wants receivers who can beat man coverage and get open with physicality. Dorial Green-Beckham would be ideal if the Eagles want to take on his off-field baggage and lack of on-field experience. Louisville’s DeVante Parker has the speed to excel in Kelly’s offense, and the potential strength to deal with aggressive coverage. Damarious Randall would be a good safety fit due to his coverage abilities, and Louisville’s Gerod Holliman tied an NCAA record with 14 picks last year. Defensive coordinator Billy Davis would just have to deal with Holliman’s aversion to contact. Among the potential guards in this class, Missouri’s Mitch Morse and Ali Marpet of Hobart have the functional mobility Kelly requires.
6:28 a.m.: Jeff Legwold of ESPN.com takes a look at who each team would take if it had the No. 1 pick. The Eagles’ selection will shock you.
You’re kidding, right? If Chip Kelly, a former Oregon coach, had the No. 1 pick in this draft, one that features a former Oregon quarterback who happened to win the Heisman Trophy in the offense Kelly left behind in Eugene, Oregon, the pick would be Mariota. And it would be the first time the Eagles had picked No. 1 in the common draft era; they took Donovan McNabb No. 2 in 1999.