Eagles Draft Wish List: The Birds Should Target Louisville’s DeVante Parker


Nov 29, 2014; Louisville, KY, USA; Louisville Cardinals wide receiver DeVante Parker (9) runs the ball against the Kentucky Wildcats during the second half at Papa John

Draft day is nearing and the rumors are heating up, especially those connected to the Philadelphia Eagles. I for one am growing tired of the endless rumors connecting the Eagles to Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota and would just like to see what actually happens at this point. Who will the Eagles draft?

The Eagles might have to sell their entire farm including blue chip defensive end Fletcher Cox and big impact inside linebacker Mychal Kendricks to land Mariota, which is not the way to go. Instead they should target a big impact playmaker who will be much cheaper to acquire.

Louisville wide receiver DeVante Parker is a huge playmaker with the potential to be an absolute star in the NFL. At this point he is at best the third ranked wide receiver in the draft behind West Virginia’s Kevin White and Alabama’s Amari Cooper. While both White and Cooper will most likely be better receivers in the NFL, they would also be much more expensive to acquire and are frankly unnecessary for what the Eagles need.

Dec 28, 2013; Orlando, FL, USA; Louisville Cardinals wide receiver DeVante Parker (9) catches a pass while defended by Miami Hurricanes defensive back Artie Burns (1) during the second half of the Russell Athletic Bowl at Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Foldy-USA TODAY Sports

I compare Parker to Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green. Green is one of the most talented receivers in the NFL and is a difference maker in every game. What makes Parker an elite talent is his hands and his concentration. He doesn’t have elite speed, but then again neither does A.J. Green (Parker ran a solid 4.45 forty and Green ran a 4.5). Parker specializes in deep routes and he has an insane catch radius. He is a perfect fit for what the Eagles need on offense.

Adding Parker would not only replace what the Eagles lost in wide receiver Jeremy Maclin (now with the Kansas City Chiefs), but would be a big upgrade and would give the Eagles something they have been lacking for a long time on offense. Adding him would also allow for the Eagles to keep wide receiver Jordan Matthews in the slot where he was very good last year.

As far as how the Eagles can get Parker, this is where it begins to get tricky. I believe that if Parker is available at the twelfth pick then the Cleveland Browns will jump on the chance to grab him, assuming of course the other top receivers are gone. If by some chance Parker falls past twelve, then the Eagles should do whatever it takes to grab him. Most likely the Eagles will have to jump the Browns in order to land Parker, so they should target a trade with the Minnesota Vikings at the eleventh spot.

Sep 15, 2013; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles guard Evan Mathis (69) leaves the field after playing the San Diego Chargers at Lincoln Financial Field. The Chargers defeated the Eagles 33-30. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

An interesting trade idea could be a package containing pro bowl left guard Evan Mathis, who is not happy with his current situation in Philadelphia. He has expressed a new contract or a trade on multiple occasions and has received interest from quite a few teams. Last year Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater was sacked 39 times in his 13 games, so the need for offensive line help is real.

A trade where the Eagles give Mathis, their first and fifth round picks in exchange for the eleventh pick and maybe an extra mid-late round pick makes sense for both sides. The Eagles have been trying to get younger on the offensive line for a while now.

Nov 23, 2013; Louisville, KY, USA; Louisville Cardinals wide receiver DeVante Parker (9) stiff arms Memphis Tigers defensive back Andrew Gaines (28) during the second quarter at Papa Johns Cardinal Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

While quarterback Sam Bradford may not be the answer for the Eagles, his job certainly becomes a lot easier if he has a receiver like Parker to whom to throw the ball. I’d much rather have Bradford throwing deep balls to Parker than Mariota throwing deep balls to Riley Cooper.

Next: Philadelphia Eagles Draft: Carlif Taylor Offers Value In Late Rounds

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