5 defensive prospects the Eagles can draft to make Vic Fangio's life even easier

Simply put, add a couple of these guys to what the Eagles already have, and Vic Fangio's defense will approach supernova.

Vic Fangio, Philadelphia Eagles
Vic Fangio, Philadelphia Eagles / Rich Storry/GettyImages

Here's a Marvel reference. Remember when Thanos finally found his way to Wakanda in Infinity War? Vic Fangio's introduction as the Philadelphia Eagles new defensive coordinator wasn't as dramatic as that, but it does kind of feel like he's toting about four of the fiva infinity stones. This dude literally has an all-star-level talent at every level of his unit's infrastructure.

He has Jalen Carter, Jordan Davis, Josh Sweat, Milton Williams, and Brandon Graham to man his defensive line. Devin White figures to be his starting middle linebacker. Bryce Huff was added as one of the edge rushers (and Philly already had Haason Reddick and Nolan Smith). Don't forget about Darius Slay. He, C.J. Gardner-Johnson, and company help patrol the secondary.

What's left to be added? Well... Ask any DC, and they'll tell you there's no such thing as too much talent. Free agency's frenzy has gifted the Eagles. The NFL Draft figures to do the same. Call us greedy. We want one of these guys.

Tyler Nubin, safety, Minnesota

We hate to put this type of pressure on the young man, but we'll do it anyway. If you're upset that the Eagles took Jordan Davis 13th overall and the Baltimore Ravens grabbed Kyle Hamilton with the very next selection, Tyler Nubin might make you happier about life.

Now, there was a lot said there. Here are a few things to mull over. One, the Eagles would have never used Hamilton similarly to what the Ravens are doing with him, so there's that. The other side of the coin is this. C.J. Gardner-Johnson makes more sense as the strong safety, so Philly could easily rock out with Nubin as the free safety.

There's a lot to love about the former Golden Gopher. He has a high football IQ. He can play deep or in the box and works in almost any scheme you can think of, including Fangio's. If you want him to be his most successful, however, use the two-deep safety look.

There's just one question. There's no way the Eagles are taking a safety in Round 1 is there?

Ennis Rakestraw Jr., cornerback, Missouri

It's official. We've boarded the Ennis Rakestraw train, and we aren't exiting any time soon. He's long and rangy, standing at six-foot-tall though some say he's closer to five-foot-eleven.

This is a second-round option. Philly could strike gold by drafting some guys we rank higher, but they'd have to select them earlier. Those guys include Terrion Arnold (Alabama), Nate Wiggins (Clemson), Kool-Aid McKinstry (Bama), Kamari Lassiter (Georgia), and Cooper DeJean (Iowa). Quinyon Mitchell (Toledo) is the cream of the crop, but there's no way the Birds are grabbing him.

Edgerrin Cooper, linebacker, Texas A&M

We, like most, rank Texas A&M's Edgerrin Cooper over the likes of Payton Wilson, but slightly. It's hard to ignore the latter's injury history and age.

Wilson will be a 24-year-old rookie by the time the regular season starts, but he runs the 40-yard dash in 4.43 seconds and is given a grade of 6.32 by NFL.com's Lance Zierlein in his draft profile which means "he'll eventually become a plus starter".

Now, if you like your rookie linebackers... well... young, Cooper does almost everything Wilson does except for being an above-average cover linebacker. Wilson plays man and zone coverage decently. Cooper is more of a run defender who can cause the occasional disruption in the passing game.

Zierlein compares Cooper to Devin Lloyd and gives the former Aggies a 6.28 grade meaning he expects him to become an average starter. Like Wilson, Cooper owns phenomenal top speed (he ran the 40-yard dash in 4.51 seconds). Philly has one shot of landing Edgerrin. They'll have to exhaust a first-round choice to do so.

Jared Verse, EDGE, Florida State

Bryce Huff is in town. We're also assured that Josh Sweat will be around for a while after his deal has been restructured. Brandon Graham has been given another year, but he isn't a spring chicken anymore. Philly would be wise to pursue a pass rusher.

Think about what we know about Howie Roseman and this regime. It makes more sense to believe he'd invest an early-round draft pick in an edge rusher than to assume he has his eyes on a defensive back or linebacker, right?

Jared Verse would be a slam-dunk addition. It's reasonable to assume that he'd already be drafted when Philly is on the clock in Round 1, but that doesn't mean he won't be available. If he's the Eagles' choice, throw a party. Lance Zierlein says he has the potential to be a first-year starter and compares him to LaMarr Woodley.

The Second-team Associated Press All-American would be a phenomenal acquisition for Philly, but he is already off the board, we'd gladly take the next guy on this list as a consolation prize if he's available.

Chop Robinson, EDGE, Penn State

Alabama's Chris Braswell is a stud, but we're not sure if NFL teams rank him ahead of Chop Robinson or behind him. Taking Darius Robinson (Missouri) or Adisa Isaac (Penn State) as first-round players seems like a reach at the 22nd overall selection.

Both Robinson and Isaac rank in the top 50 on Pro Football Focus' big board. That makes sense, so if they're available for Philly in Round 2 with the 50th or 53rd overall selection, it would make sense for the Birds to take them there.

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