Monday, April 27, 2009

Philadelphia Eagles 2009 Draft Round-up

The Eagles came in with a plan for the 2009 NFL Draft: upgrade the skill position players and give Donovan McNabb some more weapons. Since they couldn't get Anquan Boldin in a trade, the Eagles did the next best thing and got one of the top wideouts in the draft. Since they couldn't get Tony Gonzalez in a trade, they went and got a steal in the 5th round when they drafted a tight end with second round talent. The Eagles also shrewdly got a running back in the second round who many thought had first round talent. Where the Eagles didn't like the talent, they traded down. And, of course, the acquisitions of Jason Peters and Ellis Hobbs have to be included with the draft since they were traded for in exchange for draft picks. In all, that makes for a solid draft for the Eagles. Here is a complete rundown of each player selected by the Eagles in the 2009 draft:

Round 1, pick 19 (19): Jeremy Maclin, WR, Missouri
The Eagles traded up to get Maclin, so you know Andy Reid just had to have him. He reminds me a lot of DeSean Jackson, and that's a good thing. Maclin is small but is incredibly fast and is a threat to score every time he touches the ball, hence his 32 touchdowns in 28 college games. While he isn't the big receiver many Eagles fans hoped for, you don't really need that kind of receiver in a West Coast offense, anyway. Maclin also figures to be used on kick and punt returns which is where I would expect him to excel this coming year.

Round 2, pick 21 (53): LeSean McCoy, RB, Pittsburgh
Sports Illustrated projected the Eagles would take McCoy with their first round pick, so you can imagine the value the Eagles got when he fell to them in the second round. McCoy has tremendous quickness and great hands, just like Brian Westbrook, which means he is a perfect fit for the offense. McCoy will be everything that Lorenzo Booker wasn't last year, he will be the perfect guy to spell Westbrook. He isn't a change of pace back but should Westbrook go down for a few games, it will be nice to know the Eagles running attack won't be stuck in neutral.

Round 5, pick 17 (153): Cornelius Ingram, TE, Florida
Many experts are calling this pick one of the steals of the draft. Ingram missed the entire 2008 season with Florida recovering from an ACL injury, but he is considered a tremendous athlete who has second round talent if he is healthy. Had he stayed healthy, his mix of size and speed could have made him the top tight end selected in the draft. The Eagles hope Ingram can get healthy enough to be their primary pass-catching tight end in the coming years.

Round 5, pick 21 (157): Victor Harris, CB, Virginia Tech
"Macho" Harris is another value pick for the Eagles, a second/third round talent who is dealing with an injury to his foot. While he may be a step or two slow to be a solid cover corner in the NFL, the Eagles could ultimately give him a shot at a safety spot. With all of the top corners (Samuel, Brown, Hanson, Hobbs) already on the roster, Harris may be forced over to safety to get playing time, anyway.

Round 5, pick 23 (159): Fenuki Tupou, OT, Oregon
With their third pick in the 5th round, the Eagles went with more of a project player. At 314 pounds, Tupou is certainly big enough to be an NFL tackle but he has a ways to go in terms of learning how to block the kind of size and speed he will see in the league. Tupou is more of a gamble than the first four players the Eagles took, but with the third 5th round pick it doesn't hurt to take a risk.

Round 6, pick 21 (194): Brandon Gibson, WR, Washington State
Gibson could be a real steal this late in the draft. After a stellar 2007 season at Washington State where he racked up 1,180 yards receiving and 9 touchdowns, Gibson struggled through his senior year and his draft stock fell. Gibson can't entirely be to blame since Washington State as a whole really struggled in 2008, but he will need to prove that his last college season was not his true talent level. Gibson is probably a longshot to make the team unless the Eagles keep 6 or 7 recievers so a year on the practice squad is probably in order.

Round 7, pick 4 (213): Paul Fanaika, OG, Arizona State
Andy Reid must have really liked the Pac 10 this year because this is the third straight player taken from the conference. Fanaika is a big boy, at 6 foot 5 and 327 pounds, but he is likely just practice squad fodder. Most scouts think he doesn't really have a position along the offensive line which doesn't bode well for a future in the NFL.

Round 7, pick 21 (230): Moise Fokou, LB, Maryland
The Eagles went very light on defense this year, Fokou is just the second non-offensive player. Fokou figures to have a chance to make the team if he can learn to play special teams. There might also be some openings at linebacker on the Birds so Fokou has a decent chance to be a backup.

So those are the Eagles selections for the 2009 Draft. Add your comments on the Eagles draft below, and be sure to grade their draft in the poll to the left!

1 comment:

Kotite's Corner said...

Good round up of the players. I love the McCoy pick, think he will be a beast.