An eye-opening moment in Howie Roseman's press conference, a thought about the Eagles drafting a running back and a crazy Brent Celek stat.
That's a taste of what's in store in today's Roob's 10 Eagles draft-week observations!
1. There was a revealing moment in Howie Roseman's presser Wednesday when he was asked about siding with his coaches over his scouts to make the Jalen Reagor and Jalen Hurts picks, and he answered the question matter-of-factly, without denying that that's exactly what happened. Of course, Andy Weidl, the Eagles' vice president of player personnel — the guy who runs the scouting department — was sitting next to him at the time. Weidl and Roseman appear to have a good relationship, but you have to wonder what Weidl is thinking inside if indeed he and his scouts wanted the Eagles to take Justin Jefferson at 21 and someone other than Hurts at 53 (Denzel Mims? J.K. Dobbins? Kristian Fulton?). It had to drive him bonkers to recommend Jefferson and watch Roseman take Reagor instead. Weidl is highly respected from his 12 years working with Ozzie Newsome (and Joe Douglas) in Baltimore. He knows his stuff. He's a top-notch talent evaluator. And you just have to hope that this time around, Roseman listens to him.
2. I won't be surprised if the Eagles draft a running back somewhere on Day 2. Is it a pressing need? Not really. Miles Sanders is only 23 and Boston Scott is a versatile and productive backup. And Jordan Howard is back, although he's certainly no lock to make the team. But the running game will be a much bigger part of the Eagles' offense under Nick Sirianni than under Doug Pederson, and Sanders' injuries are a concern. If Najee Harris or Travis Etienne starts dropping toward 37? Or Kenneth Gainwell from Memphis is there in the third round? It would be tempting. I do think the Eagles need another quality RB.
3. Here's an oddity with Sanders' 2020 season: He had runs of 74, 74 and 82 yards, but he had only two other runs longer than 15 yards — a 19-yarder and a 26-yarder. He actually had more runs longer than 73 yards than runs between 16 and 73 yards.
4. The last Pro Bowl player the Eagles drafted outside the first half of the 1st round was Zach Ertz in 2013.
5. I'm really curious to see whether the Eagles take a chance on Caleb Farley at 12 if Patrick Surtain and Jaycee Horn are off the board (or potentially if Horn and Farley are both available). Farley has a chance to be an elite corner, something the Eagles haven't drafted in nearly two decades. But there's the back injury and surgery, and the Eagles are still haunted by the specter of Sidney Jones. Would they draft another corner with injury concerns four years later? Different players, different injuries, different situations. If healthy, Farley might be the best corner in the draft. But will they be gun shy because of Sidney? Tricky call. They can't afford to get it wrong.
6. The last player the Eagles drafted who had consecutive seasons with three interceptions was Lito Sheppard, the Eagles' 1st-round pick 19 years ago.
7. I've never been more wrong about a draft pick than when the Eagles took Keith Jackson out of Oklahoma with the 13th pick in 1988. Jackson had caught just 65 passes in his entire four-year college career and had just 13 receptions as a senior. I thought that was a massive reach. But the reality was that Oklahoma just didn't have much of a passing game and when Jackson did catch the ball he averaged close to 25 yards per reception. He got to the NFL and dominated, making 1st-team all-pro in each of his first three seasons, and his 290 catches through 1992 to this day are 12th-most ever by a tight end after five years. It was a good lesson: When it comes to evaluating players, stats sometimes are the last thing you should look at.
8. If the Eagles do move on from Zach Ertz, he'll leave Philly an agonizing 28 catches short of Harold Carmichael's franchise record of 589 receptions. That would leave Dallas Goedert as the player on the roster with the most career receptions in an Eagles uniform at 137, which means he's 452 catches short of Harold. Even if Goedert averaged 60 catches per season he wouldn't catch Carmichael until the middle of the 2028 season. And that's with 17 games in a season and no injuries.
9. I never realized this before, but Brent Celek's 4,998 career yards are 4th-most yards in NFL history by a tight end who never made a Pro Bowl. Ben Watson has the most (6,058), followed by Frank Clarke, who played for the Browns and Cowboys in the 1950s and 1960s (5,426), and Bob Tucker, who played for the Giants and Vikings in the 1970s (5,421). Also it still boggles my mind that the Eagles couldn't get Brent two more yards and get him to 5,000. They should activate him for a game this year and get him those two freaking yards.
10. Since Roseman was restored to power as GM in 2016, the Eagles have drafted 36 players. Only two of the 36 have started 16 games in a season: Carson Wentz in 2016 and 2019 and Isaac Seumalo in 2019.
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