Sunday, April 27, 2008

Philadelphia Eagles 2008 Draft Round-up

The 2008 NFL Draft is over and the Philadelphia Eagles have made a total of 10 selections. They went into the draft knowing they didn't have any glaring weaknesses on the team that needed to addressed in the draft, so they mostly took players that would help them down the road rather than guys that can step in right away. Many of the players selected are coming off injuries or they are still injured, so they aren't expected to contribute in 2008 at all. Overall I would say this was an average draft. The Eagles appeared to give their return game a boost by selecting DeSean Jackson and Quintin Demps looks like he could develop into Brian Dawkins' eventual replacement, but it's hard to see what roles the rest of these guys will play. Here is a complete rundown of each player selected by the Eagles:

Round 2, Pick 16(47): Trevor Laws, DT, Notre Dame
--The Eagles took Laws after trading out of the first round with the Carolina Panthers. They will get the Panthers 1st round selection in next years draft, a pick that could end up being pretty high considering the Panthers aren't that good. Laws is a bit of a reach as a second rounder, but he is a good fit for the 4-3 scheme and should find playing time in the Eagle defensive line rotation sometime down the road. Laws is good against the run and also did well on special teams, blocking 6 kicks in his college career.

Round 2, Pick 18(49): DeSean Jackson, WR, California
--Jackson is a small receiver with tremendous quickness who figures to help out the Eagles return team right away. He is generously listed as 6 feet tall and will be a home run threat when he lines up at wideout. Jackson has been working with Jerry Rice on what adjustments he needs to make in order to be an NFL wide receiver. He won't make the tough catches across the middle, but his speed should allow him to get plenty of separation on the outside. Donovan McNabb may have another offensive playmaker now.

Round 3, Pick 17 (80): Bryan Smith, DE, McNeese State
--An Andy Reid special: a small player from a small school. Smith was a defensive end in college, but he will likely have to make the transition to linebacker in the NFL. Smith is a great pass-rusher who dominated playing against weak competition. He was a two-time Southland Conference Defensive Player of the Year.

Round 4, Pick 10 (109): Mike McGlynn, OT, Pittsburgh
--McGlynn, a teammate of first round pick Jeff Otah, is nimble, strong and versatile. He was a tackle in college but could play guard or center in the NFL. McGlynn is a physical player that says got into altercations nearly every day in practice. He won't play in 2008 baring an injury, but he could be useful in any number of roles down the road.

Round 4, Pick 18 (117): Quintin Demps, S, UTEP
--Demps is a defensive playmaker who picked off 17 passes in his college career. He lacks hitting ability, so he isn't a complete safety, but the Eagles will likely try to groom him to be Brian Dawkins' replacement down the road. He has tremendous speed, but will need to adjust his game to fit into the Eagles' system.

Round 4, Pick 32 (131): Jack Ikegwuonu, CB, Wisconsin
--The first player taken with serious injury issues, Ikewuonu tore his ACL in January and won't play in 2008. He is described as having 1st round talent, but the injury and some off-field troubles with the law forced his draft status to fall. Down the road he could be a good #3 corner for the Eagles.

Round 6, Pick 18 (184): Mike Gibson, OT, California
--Gibson, a teammate of DeSean Jackson at Cal, was a tackle in college but will play guard in the NFL. He finished his college career with concussions that forced him to miss Cal's final game. He is very strong and agile.

Round 6, Pick 34 (200): Joe Mays, ILB, North Dakota State
--Mays comes from a small school and is small in stature. He dominated at North Dakota State and was named the Great West Football Conference Defensive Player of the Year in 2007. He was known for making big hits and flying all over the field. His role in the NFL will likely be as a special teams player where he can get out into the open field to make explosive hits.

Round 6, Pick 37 (203): Andy Studebaker, OLB, Wheaton
--Another linebacker selected in the 6th round from another small school, Studebaker is fast and also strong. He played defensive end in college but will move to linebacker in the NFL. He was an elite pass rusher in his junior year, notching 17.5 sacks. He was injured for most of his senior year with a sprained right foot.

Round 7, Pick 23 (230): King Dunlap, OT, Auburn
--Dunlap is massive at 6 foot 9 and 310 pounds, but he is coming off injuries and off-field issues that dropped his draft status immensely. Dunlap had a great junior year and was thought of to have first day talent, but he was arrested for failing to pay a speeding ticket and injured his left elbow in his senior year. The chances are slim that Dunlap will make the team.

So those are the Eagles selections for the 2008 Draft. Experts will not call this a good draft, but the Eagles do have some intriguing prospects that could develop down the road. They took a lot of gambles on injured players that have the talent to be solid contributors in the NFL.

Add your comments on the Eagles draft below, and be sure to grade their draft in the poll to the right!


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