The Eagles need playmakers and would appear to relying heavily on the outcome of the 2021 NFL Draft to fill several starting position groups. Linebacker, cornerback, safety, wide receiver and interior offensive line are the positional groups that Roseman and company should make top priority. The selections I have the Eagles taking do take into consideration ADP, their current roster and the 2022 outlook. With 11 draft picks, the assets are available to inject youth into the roster.
Round 1: No. 12 –Jaycee Horn, CB (South Carolina)– In 2002, the Eagles drafted Lito Sheppard and Sheldon Brown in the first two rounds, nearly two decades ago. Brown played collegiately at South Carolina, the same school 2019 defensive player of the year player Stephon Gilmore attended. Horn reminds me of Gilmore, but he also brings some of the swag his dad played with during his twelve-year NFL career. The idea of playmaker wide receiver has merit, but the Eagles need a plug and play starter opposite of Darius Slay. Horn would be my selection over Patrick Surtain if I had my option between the two, this guy will be a Pro-Bowler within his first two seasons in the NFL.
Round 2: No. 37-Elijah Moore, WR (Ole Miss)– Every year I have a player that immediately catches my eye, Moore was the top guy this year on my list. Moore understands his strengths and does not entertain conversation about limitations related to his size. He catches everything thrown to him, and makes it difficult for opposing defenses to minimize is YAC. He likes to have in game dialogue with the opponent, an edge desperately lacking from the soft shell of the current Eagles receiving core. If the Eagles are going to stick with Hurts at quarterback, it would be wise to invest in skilled players that allow for quick and accurate throws. Moore presents that big play after the catch skillset like Jaylen Waddle, while also providing another punt return option. Moore can turn a screen pass into a 50 yard catch and score.
Round 3: No. 70–Dylan Moses, LB (Alabama)– Bring the physicality back to the linebacker position, Moses is no Trotter, but he has a meanness to his downhill style. The film on Moses from last year shows a player hampered by a lingering injury, when healthy he is going to make plays. I wouldn’t classify it as another Jordan Hicks situation, but anytime banking on a player coming off from an injury is a risky. If the Eagles can take a 3rd round flyer on a developmental player like Davian Taylor, investing in a NFL ready prospect from a big name school shouldn’t be an issue. Moses was compared to former Eagle DeMeco Ryans in one of my previous articles, I could see Moses playing as the strong side linebacker position in 2021 and moving to middle linebacker in 2022.
Round 3: No. 84–Monty Rice, LB (Georgia)– Defensive coaches love a player who is always is consistently showing up on film tracking down the offensive player with the football in his hands. Rice has a tremendous IQ and the athletic traits to play sideline to sideline while also dropping back into coverage. Looking purely at stats and Rice would be viewed as more of a day 3 guy, he did a lot of the dirty work that allowed several of his teammates to earn their name called in the first two rounds. Rice is not a day one starter, I see him earning meaningful snaps as the season progresses and the speed of the NFL game slowing down for him.
Round 4: No. 123–Paris Ford, S, (Pittsburgh)-Ford has the defensive back flexibility that would allow him to play multiple roles his rookie season, but he is best suited as a free safety. Ford has some technique work to clean up which is why he is slated as a fourth to fifth round guy, but I’m not a person who likes to wait to see if a guy will drop a round, identify your guy and make sure he becomes an Eagle. Ford likes to hit, has good overall athleticism, a little thin so his rookie season would see extended time in the weight room.
Round 5: No. 150–Robert Hainsey, OT (Notre Dame)-Hainsey will be asked to make the transition to guard at the NFL level, and was overshadowed by other members of his offensive line. Hainsey has the strength to win his 1:1 assignments, he will need to improve his footwork, he can fall into bad habits of chopping his feet when engaged with the defenders and lose his positioning. With a. decent chance of Isaac Seumalo moving to center for the 2022 season, Hainsey would have a full year to develop under the tutelage of one of the league’s best offensive line coaches in Jeff Stoutland.
Round 6: No. 189–Kary Vincent Jr, CB (LSU)– Not often does a three year starter at a school like LSU gain so little attention, but there isn’t anything that truly stands out about Vincent. Experience and minimum mistakes against some of the best college receivers best describes Vincent, an upgrade to the names off the street the Eagles have plugged in the last few seasons.
Round 6: No. 224–Kylin Hill, RB (Mississippi State)- Hill reminds me of Marlon Mack with the Indianapolis Colts, nothing overly flashy but can hold his own. Hill would be a nice complement to Saunders as I don’t see the Eagles going in the direction of a bigger north-south style guy.
Round 6: No. 225–Deomodore Lennoir, CB (Oregon)-It’s still hard for me to consider drafting players from Oregon thanks to Chip Kelly, but Lennoir reminds me of when Jordan Poyer was drafted by the Eagles out of Oregon State. Lennoir should ultimately make the switch to safety, despite having good speed he lacks the second burst to stay stride for stride with NFL receivers.
Round 7: No. 234–Payton Turner, DE (Houston)-Athletic upside with a solid work ethic, struggled against better competition but has the length to position himself well against the run. Will need to diversify pass rushing moves to earn a practice squad position.
Round 7: No. 240–Briley Moore, TE (Kansas State)– Moore has body control for his size, and was used in multiple formations last season after transferring from Northern Iowa. A project and practice squad player, the Eagles need to add prospects as they could be exploring a full rebuild at the position with Ertz on his way out,, Goedert yet to show he can be the guy and Richard Rodgers on a one year deal.