With now the 12th pick in the first round, the Philadelphia Eagles could go in multiple different directions. Their numerous holes are what allowed them to be flexible enough to trade back and pick up an extra 1stpick next year from Miami.
Each mock draft has the Eagles picking one of a half dozen or more players, the best available player which is essentially the byproduct of how they believe the first 10 picks will go. Will all five of the top QBs be off the board? Will there be a run on receivers with the top 4 pass catchers going in the first 8 or 9 picks? Whether it’s a receiver, edge rusher, cornerback, linebacker, or offensive lineman, the Eagles are projected to fill whatever hole they can with the best talent that falls to them.
Mel Kiper’s Eagles mock draft 4.0 projects them to take Patrick Surtain II, cornerback out of Alabama. What makes this pick is what happens in the 3 picks prior to it. The Broncos at 9 and the Cowboys at 10 are both favorites to take a corner and is believed to be the first one to go. Instead of corner, Denver selects linebacker Micah Parsons and then the Patriots trade up to the 10th spot with the Cowboys to take QB Justin Fields. The Patriots trading up for a QB would be very shocking and we don’t project this to happen, but what was even more shocking was the Giants pick at 11. Kiper sees them taking receiver Jaylen Waddle, or else the Eagles would face the choice between Waddle and Surtain II. The Giants have a slew of pass catchers and spent big on this during free agency and although Waddle is extremely talented, it seems unlikely they would pass up on guys like Rashawn Slater or Kwity Paye.Embed from Getty Images
For a secondary that has been burned for years, suddenly having a tandem of Darius Slay and Patrick Surtain II would almost too good to believe. The two complement each other well as Slay is known for being a man coverage, physical corner whereas Surtain II is a very polished zone cover corner. He’s fast and has excellent ball skills. He’s over 6-0 and 200 pounds, but he’s not known for being a press man corner (unlike Jaycee Horn).
Patrick Surtain II is probably the most NFL ready corner the league has ever scene. On a daily basis in practice he’s had to match up with 1st round talent such as Jerry Jeudy, Henry Ruggs III, Jaylen Waddle and DeVonta Smith and in games he faced off with JaMarr Chase and CeeDee Lamb. Try to find another corner produced the way he did in college, has the size and speed intangibles, and the experience going up against so many 1st round receivers.
In the second round of Mel Kiper’s Eagles mock draft 4.0, he has them selecting linebacker Nick Bolton from Missouri. Eagles fans have been calling for a legitimate middle linebacker for years. Jordan Hicks showed some glimpses of filling that role, but after several injuries he moved on to the Cardinals where he has gone on to by a tackling machine in the heart of that defense. Because Micah Parsons is off the board before the Eagles first-round pick at 12, they instead try to find this type of defensive play-maker in the round 2. They did sign Eric Wilson to a one year deal, but Bolton would be the long-term solution.Embed from Getty Images
In Kiper’s Eagles mock draft 4.0, he sees them solidifying the defense with the best corner in the draft and a great middle linebacker. Obviously both picks are at needed positions, but what is noticeably absent is an offensive lineman or a receiver. They would have to address these in the 3rd round and later.