Despite ending the season much sooner than anyone would have wanted, it is now time to turn our attention to most fans second most favorite time of year. The NFL Draft. This year, the Eagles front office won’t have far for their phone call to travel with the draft taking place in Philadelphia.
Growing ever closer by the day, many fans have already turned their full focus towards the upcoming NFL Draft. With most of the better free agents already off the board, the team will be forced to address most of it’s remaining openings during the upcoming 2017 NFL Draft.
With the Draft now just over two weeks away, we are closing in on the second best part of the NFL year. Without further ado, we present week thirteen of the “Philadelphia Eagles potential first round draft picks.”
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3. Derek Barnett — Defensive End — Tennessee
One of the most recognized and praised members of the Philadelphia Eagles, the late-Reggie White left his mark on both the team and the league. Seeing as the Eagles now need someone to develop and one day take over as the number one defensive end, why not draft the man that took White’s sack record during his time at the University of Tennessee.
Losing Connor Barwin during free agency while also replacing him with an aging Chris Long, the Eagles need youth and talent at the defensive end position. While drafting a defensive end is not one of the team’s biggest needs at this moment at time, it would be hard for the Eagles to pass on Barnett should he fall to them at pick number 14.
A smooth and natural pass rusher, there are a good chunk of concerns about Barnett that have seen his draft stock fall in recent months. At one time, he was seen as the second best defensive end in this draft. While the stock is no longer there, he is still a talented player and one the Eagles could use on their defense.
2. Christian McCaffrey — Running Back — Stanford
Moving up one spot on my list this week, I consider Christian McCaffrey the best all-around running back in this draft class. While he may not be as good of a runner as Leonard Fournette, McCaffrey brings all the tools coaches love and is someone that could lead an NFL backfield for many years to come.
With an aging Darren Sproles, the Eagles can get their every down running back of the future. Given his talent, he will be someone that can help take the pressure off of Carson Wentz. Given the foundation his selection would give the Philly offense, the only thing holding him back here is the need the Eagles have at other positions.
Despite seeing a drop in stats last season with Stanford, McCaffrey was actually a more productive player in the running game. Averaging 6.3 yards per rush last season, McCaffrey showed that he is an amazing talent. A much better all around player than both Fournette and Cook, McCaffrey could be the best running back taken during this draft.
1. John Ross — Wide Receiver — Washington
Running a record setting 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, John Ross has come out of nowhere to be in contention for the first round. With the draft’s top receiver now seen as a toss up between Ross, Corey Davis, and Mike Williams, Ross looks to be the highest on the Eagles radar.
Reminding some of DeSean Jackson, John Ross was even a fan of the former Eagles receiver. Heck, he even admitted that he was a fan of Philadelphia when they had Jackson on their roster. Given his love of Jackson and Philadelphia, Ross would be the perfect selection for the Eagles as long as he remains on the board.
The addition of Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith this offseason could put this pick in jeopardy though. Unlike the cornerback position, the Eagles can add a developmental receiver in this year’s draft. While Ross would be a great addition for Philadelphia, the team has bigger fish to fry at this moment and time.