Riley Cooper: 'I don't feel left out'
From left to right: Cameron Erving, Christian Jones, Donte Moncrief. (AP)
Here are some games, and specifically some NFL prospects, Eagles fans may want to check out on Saturday.
Florida State vs. Boston College (3:30 p.m., ABC)
Christian Jones, LB, Florida State, No. 7
With the up-and-down play of the Eagles' linebackers, Chip Kelly and company may be looking to bolster a group vital to the success of Billy Davis' 3-4 scheme in the 2014 draft. Jones, a senior, is a versatile and long (6-3/232) LB who has played all three linebacker spots for the Seminoles. He has terrific sideline-to-sideline speed, the length and quickness to cover backs and tight ends, and the strength to take on blocks in the running game. Florida State should have him rushing the passer more this season from the strong side, something that will give him added value in the NFL and make him more attractive to a team like the Eagles. Where you'll see Jones shine is defending the passing game, where his athleticism and long arms make him a tough matchup. With both DeMeco Ryans and Mychal Kendricks struggling in pass coverage, a player like Jones could raise some eyebrows come draft day.
Watch: Jones' 2012 highlights
Cameron Erving, OT, Florida State, No. 75
As I discussed last Saturday, Eagles left tackle Jason Peters hasn't looked like his old self so far this season, and he'll be 32 years old at the start of the 2014 season. Erving is a redshirt junior who has had only one season as an offensive player, making the transition from defensive tackle after his redshirt freshman year. In 2012, he started every game at left tackle for the Seminoles and played incredibly well for someone who had never before lined up at the position. It helps that the 6-foot-5, 320-pound Erving is a magnificent athlete with long arms and quick feet. He rarely looked lost and showed a nasty streak, finishing off blocks in the run game until his man was pushed entirely off the TV screen. Of course there are going to be technique tweaks as he continues to learn the position, but from an athletic, size and upside perspective, Erving is going to go somewhere in the middle of the first round in 2014. He would be a nice bookend to a player with a similar story in Lane Johnson.
Ole Miss vs. Alabama (6:30 p.m., ESPN)
Donte Moncrief, WR, Ole Miss, No. 12
Kelly loves big players beating up on little players, and Moncrief might fit that bill. Given Jeremy Maclin's impending free agency and healing knee, the Eagles will need to give DeSean Jackson and whoever's at quarterback in 2014 some help. Moncrief is a big (6-2/225) receiver who excels at route running and using his frame to beat coverage. Watch the highlights below to see the double moves in which Moncrief is capable. He doesn't possess breakaway speed like Jackson, but if he gets a step on a cornerback, he won't be caught. An added bonus to Moncrief's game is his willingness to run block. Riley Cooper is doing well in that respect now, but his lack of production isn't cutting it (see story). Because Moncrief probably won't light up the stop watches at workouts, he might slip into the middle of the second round.
Watch: Moncrief vs. LSU in 2012