After a majestic season ended by a devastating loss, the Eagles sit and plot the offseason. As fans, we begin playing Howie Roseman’s role of GM. Here’s PHLSN’s early mock draft. We will have another one just prior to the draft.
1. Houston Texans: QB Teddy Bridgewater
Bridgewater would be an ideal pick for Houston, following Matt Schaub’s epic collapse.
2. St. Louis Rams: DE Jadeveon Clowney
The Rams need to add a playmaker to their defense, and Clowney would give St Louis a weapon to work with. Best-player-availible pick here.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars: OLB Anhony Barr
Gus Bradley will first look to build a tenacious defense, and may address QB later in the draft or through trade.
4. Cleveland Browns: QB Brian Bortles
Bortles has played exceedingly well this season, and the Cleveland front office will be thankful if he falls to them at four.
5. Oakland Raiders: QB Johnny Manzeil
In all honesty, there is a reason the Raiders are always up in the top five trying to find a quarterback. Derek Carri s the more polished QB, but the reckless nature of the Raiders suggests they will take Mr. Daredevil himself: Johnny Manziel.
6. Atlanta Falcons: DT Louis Nix
Atlanta’s defense came up rather small when trying to rush the quarterback in 2013. Louis Nix is a well-rounded tackle who is similar to Eagles’ DT Fletcher Cox in many ways.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: OT Jake Mathews
Mathews falls from his projected top-five pedestal into the Buccaneers lap. New coach Lovie Smith will want to build through the trenches.
8. Minnesota Vikings: QB Derek Carr
Carr, who is arguably the third best quarterback in the draft, heads to a Minnesota team that is poised for success. Some defensive help will be all the Vikings need to return to form in the NFC North.
9. Buffalo Bills: WR Sammy Watkins
The Bills could easily take a lineman here, but Watkins is a physical specimen with game-breaking speed. He and E.J. Manuel could bring some life into the Bills.
10. Detroit Lions: S HaHa Clinton-Dix
This is a guy who could provide a ball-hawking presence for the Lions, who need to improve the back end of a promising defense.
11. Tennessee Titans: OLB Khalil Mack
Similar to Jacksonville’s approach, the Titans will look to build their defense and find help for Jake Locker later in the draft/
12. New York Giants: OT Taylor Lewan
The Giants’ old and obsolete line needs an injection of youth, and Lewan would provide just that.
13. St. Louis Rams: OT Greg Robinson
The Rams will need to protect their next quarterback(whomever he is), and their budding skill position players.
14. Chicago Bears: CB Justin Gilbert
A Chicago secondary which gave up the season-ending touchdown to Randall Cobb will need to be overhauled. This pick may arrive Just-in time for the Bears.
15. Pittsburgh Steelers: WR Marquise Lee
The Steelers need to add weaponry to their offense after feeling the effects of Mike Wallace’s exit.
16. Dallas Cowboys: OLB Vic Beasley
The Cowboys need pass-rushing help after seeing injuries flatten their defense.
17. Baltimore Ravens: WR Mike Evans
Evans is a true freak of nature. The 6-5, 225 lb playmaker also possesses speed, and would transform a suspect Raven offense.
18. New York Jets: TE Eric Ebron
Ebron would add to a Jets offense that relied on Geno Smith to play as superman, which he was unable to do consistently.
19. Miami Dolphins: OT Antonio Richardson
Miami needs to protect Ran Tannehill better than they did this season.
20. Arizona Cardinals: TE Austin Seferian-Jenins
Another weapon to add to Bruce Arians’ Cardinal offense.
21. Green Bay Packers: OLB C.J. Mosley
Green Bay struggled to rush the passer without Clay Mathews, and Beasley would change the Packer defense dramatically.
22. Philadelphia Eagles: CB Ifo Ekpre-Olomu
This selection is almost too perfect to take place. Ekpre-Olomu will be leaving the Oregon Ducks, and will have played under Chip Kelly quite awhile. Fans sew last year how college experiences dictated the Eagles offseason, and this player is no exception. In addition, Ifo Ekpre-Olomu also fits the style of matchup zone and man-to-man that the Eagles like to play in the secondary. He will be more than capable of roughing up receivers physically on the outside.
UPDATE: Ekpre-Olomu will return to Oregon for his senior year. Look for the Eagles to take CB Darqueze Dennard.
It’s likely the Eagles go after S Jarius Byrd from the bills. Byrd is a playa king safety, and also has Oregon ties under Chip Kelly. With Kelly’s frustration with Patrick Chung apparent after the playoff loss, Byrd would be the perfect remedy to a season-long headache for the Eagles.
Philadelphia may wish to address wide receiver later in the draft, or try to add a pass rusher. They could do either one in free agency or through trade.
23. San Diego Chargers: CB Darqueze Dennard
The Chargers’ pass defense needs help, and Dennard would make sure they no longer get beat deep on big plays.
24. Kansas City Chiefs: DE Stephon Tuitt
Tuitt would add another big presence in the middle of the Chiefs behemoth defense.
25. Cincinnati Bengals: OT Cameron Erving
Erving would help to protect Andy Dalton, and seal the hole in the Bengals line that was opened up in their loss to San Diego.
26. Cleveland Browns: DE Trent Murphy
“There are two things that nobody off the street can do in the NFL: throw the football, and rush the passer,” said former Eagle Hollis Thomas on WIP. Having taken their quarterback, the Brown ad a pass rusher to boost their defense.
27. New Orleans Saints: CB Marcus Roberson
The Saints’ secondary depth was exposed in their narrow wild card victory. Behind the top two corners is a barren wasteland.
28. San Francisco 49ers: CB Aaron Colvin
The Niners need to fortify their secondary to support their deadly front seven.
29. New England Patriots: Kelvin Benjamin
With their top target of 2012 often injured, and their other top target in prison, the Patriots will need to add to the current crop of WRs.
30. Carolina Panthers: DT Ra’Shede Hageman
The Panther gets another weapon to take them to the top of the league.
31. Denver Broncos: LB Ryan Shazier
The Broncos defense needs to over tight ends better. Shaizer played well in his last season, and will fit in well in Denver.
32. Seattle Seahawks: OLB Kyle Van Noy
The Seahawks get a pass rusher to balance out with their supreme secondary, and will become a nightmare for defenses next season.
Chew on this as we await the future ahead.