Hudrick's 2017 NFL mock draft 2.0: Eagles get productive edge rusher

Hudrick's 2017 NFL mock draft 2.0: Eagles get productive edge rusher

The 2017 NFL draft is right around the corner. The Eagles will either hold the No. 14 overall pick thanks to their trade with the Minnesota Vikings for quarterback Sam Bradford. Here is Paul Hudrick's mock draft 2.0 to get you ready for the 2017 NFL draft, which takes place April 27-29 in Philadelphia. Version 1.0 is here

*Denotes junior
** Denotes redshirt sophomore

1. Cleveland Browns - *Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M, 6-4/272
This is a slam dunk. Moving on.

2. San Francisco 49ers - *Solomon Thomas, DL, Stanford, 6-2/273
With Kirk Cousins still in their sights for the future, new GM John Lynch goes defense. New defensive coordinator Robert Saleh is a Pete Carroll disciple. The Seahawks have used bigger linemen (Michael Bennett, Cliff Avril) as ends in their 4-3. Thomas is versatile and can be effective on the inside or outside.

3. Chicago Bears - *Jamal Adams , S, LSU, 6-0/214
The signing of former Eagle Quintin Demps means safety isn't an immediate need, but Adams is such a difference maker. He's instinctual, tough, physical and can cover. He's the type of player you can build your defense around.

4. Jacksonville Jaguars - *Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU, 6-0/240
The Jags have invested heavily on their defense. With no offensive line prospects being worthy at No. 4, they add a special player in Fournette. Fournette takes pressure off quarterback Blake Bortles. T.J. Yeldon will also be a nice change-of-pace complement to Fournette's powerful style.

5. Tennessee Titans - **Marshawn Lattimore, CB, Ohio State, 6-0/193
In a deep corner class, Lattimore is the best of the bunch. He's a physical prototype and has plenty of speed. His multiple hamstring injuries may scare some teams off, but Lattimore has the potential to be a shutdown corner.

6. New York Jets - *Mitchell Trubisky, QB, North Carolina, 6-2/222
If the Jets stay here, they could go in any direction. Trubisky has all the physical tools you want in a franchise quarterback. He was a one-year wonder for the Tar Heels so the acquisition of vet Josh McCown can only help Trubisky.

7. Los Angeles Chargers - **Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State, 6-1/206
Hooker is an elite centerfielder who also has limited college experience. His testing numbers in Indy only confirmed that Hooker is an excellent athlete. His presence adds more intrigue to an already promising young defense in LA.

8. Carolina Panthers - O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama, 6-6/251
Howard can team with All-Pro tight end Greg Olsen to form a scary tight end duo. Howard not only gives Cam Newton another receiving threat but also an outstanding blocker at the tight end position. If Fournette slips, he's an ideal fit as well.

9. Cincinnati Bengals - Jonathan Allen, DL, Alabama, 6-3/286
With the three main cogs to the Bengals' front -- Geno Atkins, Carlos Dunlap, Michael Johnson -- all approaching 30 and nearing the end of their deals, the Bengals need to get a little younger up front. Allen is a guy that can help a team immediately and in the future. 

10. Buffalo Bills - *Mike Williams, WR, Clemson, 6-4/218
Keep an eye on Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster in this spot. New head coach Sean McDermott could use a Luke Kuechly-type 'backer to lead his defense in Buffalo. With that said, I'm going with Williams to pair with another former Clemson receiver in Sammy Watkins. Williams and Watkins have skill sets that will complement each other well.

11. New Orleans Saints - Reuben Foster, LB, Alabama, 6-0/229
The Saints need all the defensive help they can get. Foster is a fast and physical linebacker that can fit in any defense. The Kuechly comparisons are fair. Foster can get sideline to sideline in a flash and punish ball carriers upon arrival.

12. Cleveland Browns - *Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson, 6-2/221
Keeping Watson here. Again, it's a nice haul for the Browns getting Garrett and then Watson. Watson showed enough at Clemson for Hue Jackson to think he can get the most out of him. He might be the "safest" of the first-round quarterbacks, but he also might have the lowest ceiling.

13. Arizona Cardinals - *Pat Mahomes, QB, Texas Tech, 6-2/225
When it was first suggested that Mahomes could be a first-round pick, I thought the draft world had gone crazy. When I went back and watched him, I saw what others saw. There are plenty of tools for Bruce Arians to work with. With that said, he is super raw. The release is slow, the mechanics are a mess and the decision-making is questionable. Given a little seasoning, the Cardinals might have Carson Palmer's eventual replacement.

14. Philadelphia Eagles - *Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee, 6-3/259
It's odd. When I read mocks from/talk to people I respect, the responses are mixed on Barnett. Some think there's no way he gets out of the top 10 (like Ray Didinger). Others don't think he's worthy of being picked in the top 15. I could see him slipping to 14 and if he does, the Eagles should pounce.

No, Barnett is not a physical and athletic specimen like Garrett, but Barnett is just a damn good football player. After Garrett, it's clear Barnett is this draft's best pure pass rusher. Barnett racked up 32 sacks, breaking Tennessee's all-time record, set by some guy named Reggie White. Is Barnett the next Minister of Defense? No. But who is?

Barnett will have to earn his time in the rotation with Brandon Graham coming off a strong season and Vinny Curry coming off a rough year after signing a big contract. Veteran Chris Long has also been added to the mix. If Curry's struggles continue, the Eagles could save roughly $5 million by cutting him after the season.

It's worth noting that pass rushers generally struggle as rookies. A year after posting just four sacks for the Falcons as a rookie, former first-round pick Vic Beasley led the NFL in sacks in 2017. Barnett has the potential to be a consistent player at the next level. He wins with violent hands and brute strength. That should translate just fine to the NFL.

15. Indianapolis Colts - Haason Reddick, LB, Temple, 6-1/237
The Colts are also in desperate need of defensive playmakers. Enter the local kid. Reddick has the instincts of an inside 'backer but the pass rush skills of an edge rusher. He could be used inside for early downs and outside for obvious passing downs. Size is a concern as a pass rusher, but recently retired Colt Robert Mathis racked up 123 career sacks playing at around 240 pounds.

16. Baltimore Ravens - Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan, 6-3/209
With speedsters Mike Wallace and Breshad Perriman in the fold, Davis is a perfect complement as a possession receiver that can play outside or in the slot. Williams might have the higher upside, but Davis is so polished as a route runner he may have the biggest impact of any receiver as a rookie.

17. Washington Redskins - *Malik McDowell, DL, Michigan State, 6-6/295
A stud prospect out of high school, McDowell never showed his full potential at Michigan State. An optimist would say he's just scratching the surface of what he can be. A pessimist would say he's an underachiever. It's worth noting that he'll turn just 21 in June. He'd be an intriguing fit as a 3-4 end for Washington.

18. Tennessee Titans - *John Ross, WR, Washington, 5-11/188
The Titans have the opposite situation of the Ravens with solid possession receivers in Rishard Matthews and Tajae Sharpe. They need speed and Ross has plenty of it. What I like most about Ross is that he's not just a burner. He actually runs good routes and creates with the ball in his hands.

19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - *Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford, 5-11/202
The McCaffrey-to-the-Eagles hype has been strong. Really McCaffrey's hype in general has been insane since his incredible combine. Projecting McCaffrey to the top 15 is a little too rich for my blood. Along with DeSean Jackson and Mike Evans, Jameis Winston would have a full complement of weapons.

20. Denver Broncos - *Garrett Bolles, OT, Utah, 6-5/297
The more I studied the tackles, the more appealing Bolles became. His combine made him only more attractive. He's crazy athletic for a tackle and has a mean streak. His stock is soaring, but I like him here. The Broncos need all the help they can get in protecting whoever their starting quarterback is. 

21. Detroit Lions - *Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State, 6-0/195
Conley isn't the strongest or most physical corner in the draft, but he can flat out cover. Darius Slay has been excellent in Detroit. Putting Conley on the other side could give a Detroit one of the better secondaries in the league.

22. Miami Dolphins - *Jabrill Peppers, S, Michigan, 5-11/213
Forget the one career interception, Peppers can play. He proved at the combine that actual ball skills aren't the issue. Nor is his speed. Peppers would form an interesting tandem with former Pro Bowler Reshad Jones. 

23. New York Giants - *Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin, 6-6/310
I actually like Alabama's Cam Robinson more, but I don't think he and Erik Flowers are an ideal pairing. Ramczyk has a better chance to start at left tackle from Day 1. The Giants have plenty of weapons. Now they just need to keep Eli Manning upright.

24. Oakland Raiders - *Zach Cunningham, LB, Vanderbilt, 6-3/234
The Raiders have some pieces on defense, but a starting middle linebacker isn't one of them. Cunningham may project better as a playmaking weakside linebacker, but he was a stud as a middle linebacker during his time at Vandy. 

25. Houston Texans - *Cam Robinson, OL, Alabama, 6-6/322
If Notre Dame quarterback DeShone Kizer is on the board, the Texans will likely give him a long look. In Robinson they get a right tackle that's strong in the run game and could eventually evolve into a left tackle. Houston could opt to take the same path the Eagles did with Lane Johnson, letting Robinson play on the right before taking over for former All-Pro left tackle Duane Brown.

26. Seattle Seahawks - Taco Charlton, DE, Michigan, 6-6/277
Washington corner Kevin King is a trendy pick here, and he would make sense. I'm going with Charlton. He fits the Seahawks' size profile for DEs, and Bennett and Avril are both in their 30s. Charlton and the emerging Frank Clark could be a formidable duo in the future. He's also a great value pick at 26. 

27. Kansas City Chiefs - *Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State, 5-10/210
Cook drops this low only because of off-the-field issues. The talent is clearly there. Andy Reid has shown in the past he's not afraid to take players with troubles off the field. The hope is a strong head coach with a strong locker room will get the most out of Cook. This also seems like a good spot for Notre Dame quarterback DeShone Kizer.

28. Dallas Cowboys - TreDavious White, CB, LSU, 5-11/192
White could easily go in the top 20, so this is a great value pick for Dallas. White isn't a freak athlete like Lattimore, but he's strong in coverage. He should be able to play on the outside in the NFL, but he also has the toughness to play in the slot.

29. Green Bay Packers - Takkarist McKinley, DE, UCLA, 6-2/250
Corner is a strong possibility, but they could use another edge rusher as well. Nick Perry is back, but Clay Matthews is 30 and there isn't much in the pipeline at the position. McKinley would fit the Packers' profile at outside 'backer and could contribute in a rotation with Perry and Matthews.

30. Pittsburgh Steelers - *DeShone Kizer, QB, Notre Dame, 6-4/233
Kizer has a lot of Ben Roethlisberger in him. He has great size, a big arm and is a sneaky athlete. Kizer will have at least one season to learn behind Big Ben. When they hand over the reins to Kizer, he'll have a strong offensive line and elite offensive weapons. Kizer has a chance to be the best quarterback in this class. If he lands in Pittsburgh, those chances only improve.

31. Atlanta Falcons - *David Njoku, TE, Miami, 6-4/246
This would be scary. Njoku is an athletic freak who's excellent after the catch. Giving Matt Ryan Njoku to go along with Julio Jones, Mohammed Sanu and Taylor Gabriel just doesn't seem fair. I'd have my money on Ryan to repeat as league MVP.

32. New Orleans Saints - **Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama, 6-0/197
Corner is a need and Humphrey has the physical profile of a shutdown corner. He's physical but I was troubled by what I saw out of him during the CFP. He lacks ball skills and has trouble locating the football. If he can improve in those areas, the sky's the limit. 

What's the best play in Eagles history?

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What's the best play in Eagles history?

Throughout the week, we have asked fans help determine the best play in Philadelphia sports history. Today, upvote below to adavnce one Eagles play to the finals on Friday where five plays will face off to determine the top overall play.

Tune in to Philly Sports Talk at 5 p.m. to see which play will advanace to the final.


Eagles 2017 training camp position battle: Cornerback

Eagles 2017 training camp position battle: Cornerback

It's no secret.

If anyone is looking for the biggest weakness on the 2017 Eagles roster, here it is. Cornerback could be an adventure.

At least this isn't anything new. In 2015, when the team trotted out Nolan Carroll and Byron Maxwell, fans probably thought things couldn't get worse in 2016. They were wrong. Last year, the struggles continued with a combination of Leodis McKelvin, Carroll, Ron Brooks and rookie Jalen Mills.

The good news is the Eagles might finally have some young talent to keep around for a while. Mills, a seventh-rounder last season, got valuable playing time and this year, the team drafted Sidney Jones and Rasul Douglas in the second and third rounds. Jones is still recovering from his Achilles injury, but Douglas could figure into the rotation early.

The team also added veteran Patrick Robinson and brought back Brooks, C.J. Smith and Aaron Grymes.

During the spring, Mills, Robinson and Douglas worked with the first team, but defensive backs coach Cory Undlin said there isn't anything decided yet.

“It’s just going to be who’s going to step up here in training camp and through the preseason," Undlin said. "Who’s going to say, 'Listen, I’m starting here, I’m starting here, I’m going to play the nickel,' and then here’s the backups. 

"I like them all right now and we’ll find out how it goes down, and that’s what this whole [offseason] is for, to find out who’s going to rise to the top and who’s going to earn a spot and take it and then hopefully can keep it. We’ll see how that goes."

During the spring, Mills and Robinson worked as the Eagles' cornerbacks in the team's base package. And in the nickel, Mills pushed inside and Douglas took his spot outside. That is the same type of role Brooks had during training camp with the Eagles last season.

Brooks is sort of the forgotten man, coming off a serious leg injury that ended his 2016 season early. He was the team's primary nickel corner last season and when he went down, the team was forced to play Malcolm Jenkins in the slot, which meant putting Jaylen Watkins on the field as a safety.

While Undlin was hesitant to name starters at the end of the spring, it seems likely the Eagles will give Mills every opportunity to keep one of those starting gigs. After that, there are a bunch of guys in the mix for the three jobs.