The Philadelphia Eagles draft Andre Dillard in Round 1 of the 2019 NFL Draft, and in doing so, they may have found their eventual replacement for Jason Peters.
Are you starting to now see why you can’t put a ton of stock in mock drafts? Sure, they’re fun. Yes, it makes you feel smart when you get one right, but the NFL Draft isn’t an exact science. Recently, we ranked the best offensive tackle prospects in this year’s selection meeting, and Andre Dillard was second. Somehow the Philadelphia Eagles managed to land him at pick 22.
No one saw that coming. We, at ITI, joked once that we didn’t know what the Eagles were going to do and that they didn’t either. It’s impossible to choreograph a draft. Once it gets rolling, there are surprises.
Eagles executive vice president of football operations Howie Roseman admitted Philly was surprised the man who might be the best pass protector in the draft was still available as their pick neared. Seeing an opportunity and knowing that he might not be available too much longer gave them the notion to trade up.
They did so, from pick 25 to pick 22, and they got a guy who was high on their draft board (and everyone else’s).
Here’s more from Roseman:
"When he started to fall, we just saw an opportunity to get a top 10 player. Again, when you have a top 10 player at an important position, it doesn’t matter about the depth on our team. We’re trying to load up on the lines."
Here’s Pete Prisco of CBS Sports‘ take:
"He’s a good pass protector, but he didn’t have to put his hand in the ground. Eventually he’ll have to, but can he? He better be a guy you can plug in there and be a 10-year starter and make some All-Pro teams. Taylor would have been my pick in this spot. Grade: B-"
We go to Dan Kadar of SB Nation. They released draft grades shortly after round one was done.
"Grade: B-It’s imperative that Carson Wentz stays healthy. When Jason Peters retires, Dillard should be able to step in immediately and keep Wentz upright. The Eagles had to make a trade to make this pick happen."
For those of you wondering why Philly had to trade up three spots to get him, here’s a clear answer from Ian Rapoport.
Philly sent a first-round pick (the 25th overall), a fourth-round pick (the 127th), and a sixth-round pick (the 197th) to the Baltimore Ravens to move up three spots. Here’s where they stand now in terms of picks:
The second and third rounds are scheduled for Friday night. Eagles great has his ideas on what Philly should do.
We’ll have to wait a few more hours to see if Roseman and Joe Douglas agree with him.