Since the conclusion of the Philadelphia Eagles 2011 season, there has been a variety of NFL hopefuls linked to the Birds and the fifteenth overall pick in the rapidly approaching draft. Everything from receiver, linebacker, defensive end, defensive tackle, and the safety positions have all been examined.
The mere thought that Andy Reid and co. would look to a cornerback is almost absurd. Why, when Philly has players like Nnamdi Asomugha, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, and Asante Samuel, would the Eagles target a cornerback with their first round pick in this years draft?
The way I see it, there are more than a couple of reasons why this could play out so lets break it down.
First there is the obvious that has been a relatively hot topic all offseason. That is four-time Pro Bowl veteran Asante Samuel’s current debacle. Samuel has been linked to the trade block more than once over the course of one year. Last year there was the potential that Asante almost ended up with the Detroit Lions before that fell apart. Then there is Samuel’s twitter antics that we are all we aware of by now that the Eagles front office could look at as being a distraction.
Now, you’re probably shaking your head at this point and are saying well what about Asomugha, DRC, and heck we can’t forget about Joselio Hanson and even Curtis Marsh. Fair enough. Hanson plays his best football in nickel and dime formations and should stay there (if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it). Marsh is an interesting option but there is no telling how he will translate at this level. So having quality depth at a position the front office values is always a possibility.
That brings me to my next point. It is no secret that there are two defensive positions that Philadelphia values more than any other — defensive end and cornerback. This season the CB position triumphs the end position because Philly’s defensive coaching staff are still behind 2010 first-round pick Brandon Graham, and want to see what he is capable of before investing yet another first-round pick on a top-rated defensive end.
The reality is that the Eagles aren’t in need of an immediate starter, you could basically pencil in 20 or 21 of the 22 starters on the team, and the remaining two spots are most definitely on the defensive side of the ball. So to think that they could take their traditional approach of best player available is very real. Even though the starters are all but unofficially named, there is a severe need for quality depth at numerous positions.
Sixteen days and counting until the main event. If you are unable to watch the event you can tune into our Sports Nut Radio for our draft day coverage. It’s online and most everyone has either an android or iPhone device so you can chime in that way also!
Stay tuned, with so many potential options, day one of the draft is surely going to be an exciting day!
First Round Options at Cornerback
- Morris Claiborne, LSU — projected top-five pick
- Dre Kirkpatrick, Alabama — top-twenty pick
- Stephon Gilmore, South Carolina — anticipated pick between 20-25