Roseman On the Importance Of Picking Eighth

Howie Roseman. (Jeff Fusco)

Howie Roseman. (Jeff Fusco)

Back in 2014, you’ll recall, the Eagles went into the draft having identified six players that they were interested in snaring. When the last of those — safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix — was plucked by the Packers one pick before they went on the clock, they moved back from 22 and ended up selecting Marcus Smith 26th overall.

Both in circumstance and outcome, things did not play out as they had hoped.

By securing the No. 8 overall pick in this April’s draft, Howie Roseman has ensured that they won’t suffer a similar fate this time around — at least as it applies to the process.

“The way we looked at it, we felt like there were 10 players that really stood out to us,” he explained. “…We felt like if we were in position to get one of those top 10 guys, there was tremendous value in that. And to be able to [secure a top 10 position] before draft day and spend more time vetting all those guys would really help us.”

We can (and will) speculate as to who the Eagles have in their top 10 and where they might rank in the weeks ahead. Perhaps it’s similar to Daniel Jeremiah’s list (he was considered for the personnel gig after all, right?), which currently looks like this:

  1. Laremy Tunsil – OT, Ole Miss
  2. Jalen Ramsey – S, Florida State
  3. Myles Jack – LB, UCLA
  4. Joey Bosa – DE, Ohio State
  5. DeForest Buckner – DT, Oregon
  6. Ezekiel Elliott – RB, Ohio State
  7. Carson Wentz – QB, North Dakota State
  8. Jared Goff – QB, Cal
  9. Vernon Hargreaves – CB, Florida
  10. Ronnie Stanley – OT, Notre Dame

There are a couple quarterbacks in there, and it stands to reason that there may be a quarterback or two in the Eagles’ group as well. If they’re planning on going best available, they’ll have to go QB if it breaks that way at eight, then, correct?

“We’re open to any position that makes us better,” Roseman responded. “We’re going to continue to look at every avenue to improve our depth chart at every position.

“We want competition here. We want good players. When we were really rolling, we always had three really good quarterbacks. That’s something that’s really important. You’ve seen seasons go down the drain because teams have one quarterback.”

When talking about the QB position earlier in the afternoon, Doug Pederson said that Sam Bradford is the No. 1, Chase Daniel No. 2 “and we’re working on the No. 3.”  That not only suggests Mark Sanchez is on his way out as anticipated, but that they likely intend on taking a quarterback during this draft — whether that’s at No. 8 or later.

However it plays out, Roseman sounds confident that they are going to end up with a top-flight prospect. By the sounds of it, they intend on staying put in that eight slot unless they get an offer they can’t refuse.

“We’re very comfortable picking at eight. For us, we know we’re going to get a really good player,” he said. “We’re just going to go into it [thinking] best available player and we know whoever falls to that spot is going to have a chance to be Pro-Bowl caliber, which is really exciting for us. But again, we’re open to anything that improves our football team so no options are off the table as we go into the draft.”

Pro Football Talk noted that the Eagles could still have a window to trade Sam Bradford without taking a financial hit:

Per a source with knowledge of the deal, the first $5.5 million installment of Bradford’s $11 million signing bonus isn’t due until March 18, 2016. The second is due on or before September 1, 2016. So the Eagles have yet to pay Bradford a penny; they could transfer his entire contract to a new team.

Roseman was asked about that, and whether they’d consider something like that if a team blew them away.

“I can tell you in all honesty I have not looked at the cap ramifications of trading Sam Bradford because it’s not anything that we’ve talked about. And in terms of trading anyone…that’s the business we’re in. We’re open for business. If we see things that make us a better football team, help the Philadelphia Eagles, we owe it to our fans, we owe it to our ownership, we owe it to this building to explore those things.”