The NFL Draft is upon us yet again. My friends and I had treated the draft like it was game day up until they moved to the current three day format. Being married with children it’s tough to thoroughly enjoy the 1st round of the draft on a Thursday night, knowing that the baby will be wide awake at 5 am and work will be waiting for you at 8:30. That being said, I now tend to remember a lot more of the draft then I used to and have found that I actually enjoy it a lot more with a clear head.
The draft itself is exciting; no other sport does it as well as the NFL. While watching other teams make their picks is interesting and fun, the average fan just sits and waits for their team make their selections. The Eagles have had a history of moving up to select a guy that they could’ve had anyway, or trading down just to select a backup but they have hit on some picks in the last couple of years, DeSean Jackson, LeShawn McCoy and Jeremy Maclin to name a few. Below is how I see the Eagles draft in 2011.
1st Round Pick #23.
Assuming the Eagles can’t move Kevin Kolb this will be their first pick in the draft. Don’t be surprised if they move up or down depending on how things unfold; but if they stay here they will go corner back. They desperately need a corner to play opposite of Asante Samuel and the first round of this year’s draft has some talent at the position. The Pick: Jimmy Smith, CB Colorado.
2nd Round Pick #54.
The Eagles believe in building from the lines out and both need some attention in this year’s draft. They focus on the offensive line first, selecting Danny Watkins a 6’3 310 pound guard from Baylor.
3rd Round Pick #85.
With the injury history of Stewart Bradley the Eagles spend an early pick to get some depth at middle linebacker and a possible future starter. Kelvin Sheppard, ILB LSU.
4th Round Pick’s 104 & 120.
The Eagles have two picks in the round so they will look to add some depth on the defensive and offensive lines. Pick 104, Sione Fua, a 6’1 308 pound defensive tackle from Stanford. Pick 120, Marcus Gilbert, a 6’6 330 pound offensive tackle from Florida.
5th Round Pick’s 149 & 153.
The Eagles again have two picks in the round and they will look to add depth at linebacker and defensive back. At pick 149 they go with safety Robert Sands from West Virginia. At 6’4, 217 pounds, Sands may be the enforcer the Eagles have lacked at the position since the departure of Brian Dawkins. At pick 153 the Eagles take Mark Herzlich, OLB from Boston College.
6th Round No Pick.
7th Round Pick’s 227 & 237.
The Eagles love the 7th round of the draft. They seem to find guys that they think can be NFL starters, but then they just have to focus on the position a year or two down the road. Maybe this year they will get lucky. Pick 227, they select Nic Grigsby, Running Back from Arizona. Their final pick will be Jake Kirkpatrick, Center from TCU.
If I hit on any of these picks it will be amazing. Predicting the NFL draft is like predicting the weather…10 years from now. I do know that the Eagles focus should be on the defensive backfield, offensive line and they should also focus on adding depth at linebacker and along the defensive line. Maybe next season Big Red will let me into the war room…LOL.