Eagles Meeting Draft Prospects That Fill Needs

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November 3, 2012; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes linebacker Ryan Shazier (10) tackles Illinois Fighting Illini running back Donovonn Young (5) after a short gain at Ohio Stadium. Ohio State won the game 52-22. Mandatory Credit: Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

The past couple decades of Philadelphia Eagles football have left fans lacking a superb talent at linebacker, while the past half decade has left the Eagles lacking a competent replacement for longtime safety and future hall of famer Brian Dawkins.  Thus far throughout the underwear Olympics that is the NFL Scouting Combine and college pro days, the Philadelphia Eagles appear to be making it a priority to meet with draft prospects that fall under these two positions of need.  More so than any other position thus far, the Eagles and Chip Kelly have interviewed at least 13 linebacker draft prospects thus far.  One name that stands out to me is Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier.  I understand the criticisms of Shazier’s size, but sometimes it’s critical to watch how a player actually plays football, and for me there are very few draft prospects at linebacker other than Buffalo’s Khalil Mack that appear better than Shazier.  Of course, the only linebacker prospect that has had multiple publicized meetings with the Eagles is Jeremiah Attaochu out of Georgia Tech.  Projected to be a 3rd-5th round prospect, Attaochu is very raw and would appear to be ideally used in a 3-4 scheme as a pass rusher.

As mentioned earlier in this article, despite not needing much prior mention, is that the Philadelphia Eagles need help with their safeties.  While some recent attention has focused on Oklahoma cornerback Aaron Colvin, I don’t believe that the Eagles will address a surprising position of strength in the draft, particularly after free agent Nolan Carroll signed with the team early in free agency.  I am still bullish on both Alabama safety Ha’Sean Clinton-Dix and Louisville safety Calvin Pryor as the ideal candidates for the Eagles in the first round.  With the exception of backup quarterback Matt Barkley, four of the Eagles first five selections in the 2013 draft contributed immensely last season.  Clinton-Dix or Pryor would immediately be able to be paired with incumbent safety Earl Wolff making the secondary considerably stronger.  And while it is near impossible to anoint Chip Kelly as a draft guru after only one season, clearly he and the front office understand how to evaluate the talent necessary for the implemented scheme.  The most important thing to take away as of now is, the Eagles appear to be sniffing around draft prospects that this fan base would greatly appreciate.  And for that, we can only remain optimistic as we inch closer to the NFL Draft.

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