As the 2019 NFL Draft approaches, the Philadelphia Eagles have yet to meet with any linebacker prospects for a Top-30 visit.
Once again, the Philadelphia Eagles are winning in the offseason. They have made some decent signings, trades, and even re-structures with guys of their own in order to remain competitive. Are they perfect? Not exactly. They never will be. However, we are approaching a season where the Eagles could very well be one of the most overall complete teams in the NFL.
The defense and offensive lines are both pretty solid still. The cornerbacks? There is a ton of them, but they just have to figure out who deserves to start. Quarterback, wide receivers, and even the backfield seem solid before the draft. Then, the safety position on defense is one of the NFL’s better duos as well. That just leaves the Eagles with one glaring hole on the team – the middle linebacker position where Jordan Hicks will be missing.
As we all know, Jordan Hicks signed with the Arizona Cardinals this year. That leaves the Eagles with guys like Kamu Grugier-Hill, Nathan Gerry, Paul Worrilow, and L.J. Fort. All of which will likely rotate in and play alongside Nigel Bradham. This scenario sounds problematic, right? The Eagles should probably prioritize an inside linebacker for the draft this year. If you’re expecting that though, don’t hold your breath, because it’s not going to happen.
Why won’t the Eagles prioritize the linebacker position?
With the scouting process heading into its home-stretch, the Eagles are less than two weeks away from making their first pick, at pick No. 25. Some expect a running back. Others expect a linebacker. Everybody shouldn’t expect either. I won’t speak on the backfield situation at the moment, but understand that just like the running back position, the Eagles plan to utilize a rotation of mid-tier guys, rather than go all in on a big name.
For the last couple of weeks, the Eagles have hosted 28 out of their Top-30 prospects. As you can see above, not one candidate was a linebacker. Is it a coincidence? Not in the slightest. Now, don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t put a ton of stock into the Top-30 players that were chosen. However, seeing a lack of a particular position’s visits truly shows how much the Eagles are disinterested.
Kamu Grugier-Hill played well enough to get an increase in snaps last season. Gerry is still a question mark but don’t forget; the Eagles signed Fort as well. The public consensus believes Fort is a special teamer only, but that won’t be the case when training camp rolls around. The veteran, Paul Worrilow will instead play the role that many expect Fort to play.
If the Eagles do decide to make one of their seven draft picks this spring a linebacker, nobody should expect it to be within the first three rounds. As there are only a few top-tier guys available, there’s hardly a chance one of them falls to the Eagles at 25. As they raved about offensive and defensive lineman, and continue to host wideouts, we would very well see the linebacker position get neglected until at least the fourth round this year.