Draft Cont'd: Eagles Add Defense, Quarterback, Fourth Rounder; Day 3 Now Underway

Draft Cont'd: Eagles Add Defense, Quarterback, Fourth Rounder; Day 3 Now Underway

We're hesitant to use the word "successful," as the NFL Draft is historically hard to accurately judge in real time, but the Eagles certainly had a productive rounds two and three on Friday night. The front office continued to focus on defense in the second, even managing to re-gain a pick in Saturday's fourth round, yet also added a potential quarterback of the future in the third, if for no other reason than to keep all of us guessing about the state of the franchise.
It all began with No. 46, LB Mychal Kendricks out of Cal, who figures to compete for a starting job at outside linebacker this season. A brief rundown below.
The 5-11, 239-lb Kendricks was the fastest linebacker in the draft, the only one to run a sub-4.5 forty in fact. While he may not be the biggest player in the world, Kendricks was a prolific tackler in college, and that's a lot more important than any measurables at the moment. He instantly projects as the club's starting strongside linebacker come Week 1, and it's tough to complain about that at the moment.
Next the Eagles used the No. 51 pick acquired from the Cardinals to get one back. After trading a fourth-round pick to Seattle to jump up three spots in round one, the Birds sent Arizona's second to the Green Bay Packers, moving down eight spots and adding 123rd overall in the process. The Kevin Kolb pick now nets two players in this draft.
Eight picks later, the Eagles went back to work, pulling their only real surprise of the night. The saying goes you can never have too many pass rushers, and Andy Reid obviously agrees, as Philly chose Vinny Curry from Marshall. The 6-3, 266-lb Curry racked up 23 sacks over the past two seasons, albeit playing in C-USA. He looks like Brandon Graham insurance at first blush, just in case the club's first pick from 2010 never recovers from microfracture surgery.
Later the Birds confirmed they were not entirely comfortable with the current crop of quarterbacks, selecting Arizona's Nick Foles in round three. Scouting reports would indicate Foles has an NFL arm, but is not regarded as very athletic. It is questionable just how important that is for a signal caller, but certainly bucks recent trends at the position.
Rounds four through seven continue at noon.

Tonight's lineup: Michael Saunders dropped to eighth in order

Tonight's lineup: Michael Saunders dropped to eighth in order

Pete Mackanin is still searching for answers to the Phillies' offensive woes following Sunday afternoon's disheartening 1-0 loss in Pittsburgh during which the Phils could only muster three hits.

The latest lineup twist as the search for an answer continues will see Michael Saunders bat in the eight-hole tonight as the Phils open a four-game series with the surging Rockies tonight at Citizens Bank Park (see game notes).

When he has started this season, Saunders has been a fixture within the middle of the Phillies' order. After all, the offseason free-agent signing was an All-Star last season for Toronto when he hit 24 homers and drove in 57 runs.

But this season hasn't gone as planned as Saunders is hitting just .232 with four homers and 15 RBI in 41 games with the Phils this season.

With Saunders' drop down the lineup, Tommy Joseph will bat fourth, Maikel Franco fifth and Odubel Herrera sixth against Rockies spot starter Jeff Hoffman.

Tonight's full lineup can be found below:

Phillies
1. Cesar Hernandez 2B
2. Freddy Galvis SS
3. Aaron Altherr LF
4. Tommy Joseph 1B
5. Maikel Franco 3B
6. Odubel Herrera CF
7. Cameron Rupp C
8. Michael Saunders RF
9. Jerad Eickhoff SP

St. Joe's to meet St. John's in 2017 Hall of Fame Holiday Showcase

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St. Joe's to meet St. John's in 2017 Hall of Fame Holiday Showcase

With the matchups for Saint Joseph's men's basketball's conference slate already set, the Hawks have now added an old northeast corridor rival to the nonconference portion of their schedule.

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced Monday afternoon that St. Joe's and St. John's will meet on Dec. 20 during of the seventh annual Hall of Fame Holiday Showcase at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. Providence and Houston will play in the other contest of the two-game event.

“We are honored to be associated with the Basketball Hall of Fame, an organization that promotes all levels of the game," Saint Joseph’s head coach Phil Martelli said in a statement released Monday. "We're delighted for our players to have the opportunity to compete against the legendary St. John's program and are looking forward to an old-fashioned Philly vs. New York matchup.” 

The two schools have played just once in the past 37 years—when the sides met at Hagan Arena in 2013, the Red Storm pulled out a narrow victory to advance to the second round of the NIT. But December's matchup will be the 58th all-time meeting between the programs.

Saint Joseph's last played at the Mohegan Sun Arena back in the 2015 Hall of Fame Showcase, losing to Florida before knocking off Old Dominion in the consolation game. The Hawks return nearly their entire roster for the 2017-18 season, including all five starters, led by the backcourt duo of Shavar Newkirk and Lamarr Kimble.