When the NFL Draft begins selections in Arlington, Tex., April 26, the Philadelphia Eagles have the No. 32 pick in the first round.
Here is an in-depth look at the team’s needs, offseason changes, potential best fit and the selections by NFLDraftScout.com’s experts.
Who would you pick and why?
TOP 5 NEEDS
- Tight end: Zach Ertz is one of the league’s top tight ends, but the Eagles didn’t re-sign Trey Burton and released veteran Brent Celek. They are high on practice-squadder Billy Brown, who has a similar skill-set to Burton, and could end up bringing Celek back at a lesser salary. But they almost certainly will draft a tight end who will compete for the No. 2 job.
- Cornerback: They acquired Daryl Worley in a trade with the Panthers, but he was released last week after being arrested. Ronald Darby probably will be gone after next season and the jury still is out on how effective Jalen Mills will be as Patrick Robinson’s replacement in the slot.
- Safety: Malcolm Jenkins and Rodney McLeod are one of the league’s better safety tandems. But Jenkins is 30, both have large cap numbers and there is no depth behind them. This will be another draft priority.
- Offensive line: Halapoulivaati Vaitai did a surprisingly good job after nine-time Pro Bowl left tackle Jason Peters tore his ACL last year. Peters, who is 36, is returning for at least one more season, which means Vaitai will back up the two tackle spots. But the Eagles still need to add more depth to their line for the post-Peters era.
- Wide receiver: Alshon Jeffery is coming off a terrific season, and Nelson Agholor had a breakout year in the slot. The Eagles signed Mike Wallace, but he has underperformed the last few years. They are bullish on second-year man Mack Hollins, but still could add another wideout.
–BEST FIT: Dallas Goedert, TE, South Dakota State. Goedert is a terrific pass-catching tight end who had 164 receptions and 18 touchdowns his last two years at South Dakota State. Pairing him with Pro Bowler Zach Ertz would give the Eagles the most dangerous pair of tight ends in the league.
–Rob Rang: Jaire Alexander, CB, Louisville. With a stacked roster, the Super Bowl champions are in the enviable position of being able to take the best player available or trade out. With Patrick Robinson moving on (and more potential than production among the other corners on Philadelphia’s current roster), general manager Howie Roseman could fall for Alexander’s fit as a potential “starter” at nickel.
–Dane Brugler: Derrius Guice, RB, LSU. That noise you hear? That’s a collective groan from the rest of the NFC East who don’t want to see a physical, violent ball-carrier like Guice added to the division.
FANS ON THE CLOCK, ON THE RECORD
OK, it’s your turn. Tell us in the comments section who you would pick and why. Check out top 1,000 players rated by NFLDraftScout.com, including combine and pro day workouts, biographies, scouting reports.