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Eagles draft targets at No. 14: Wisconsin OT Ryan Ramczyk

Eagles draft targets at No. 14: Wisconsin OT Ryan Ramczyk

Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin

Height: 6-foot-6
Weight: 310 pounds

2016: 14 starts

Bench press: 25 reps

Is Ryan Ramczyk the next Lane Johnson, or is the 2017 NFL Draft prospect another Danny Watkins? Because even the mere possibility of the latter might be enough to convince the Eagles to keep their distance.

Much like the last two offensive linemen the Eagles selected in the first round of the draft, Ramczyk’s college football career evolved from modest beginnings. Johnson played tight end at a community college before making the jump to Oklahoma, where he became an offensive tackle. Watkins was a Canadian training to become a firefighter at a junior college in Texas before finding his way to Baylor as a 25-year-old junior.

Ramczyk made the jump from Division III to the Badgers in 2015, where after a redshirt year, he wound up playing only one season. Obviously, it was impressive, because he earned first-team All-Big Ten and All-American honors. Still, the small body of work is concerning.

Actually, there’s even less tape of Ramczyk at a major college program than there was of Johnson or Watkins, who each spent two seasons as a starter before making the leap to the NFL. And like Watkins, scouting reports question Ramczyk’s passion for football -- though say nothing about a predisposition to firetrucks over playbooks.

Despite the unconventional background, Ramczyk could be the first offensive lineman off the board this year. There is not much in the way of consensus over who the top offensive tackle is in the draft, but his name often at the top of the list. Ramczyk may be the only one who potentially warrants a top-15 pick, too.

Tackle could certainly be viewed as a need for the Eagles. At this point, you never which season could be Jason Peters’ last. The nine-time Pro Bowl selection rebounded after a disappointing and injury-riddled 2015 campaign, but the writing is on the wall. Peters will be 36 in January and entering the final year of his contract, and already isn’t as dominant as he once was.

The Eagles might not want to make too many assumptions about Johnson, either. While he’s been groomed to eventually take over for Peters at left tackle, some feel the four-year veteran is better suited for the right side, while recurring PED suspensions threaten to knock him out action.

Under optimal circumstances, Johnson takes Peters’ place on the left, but who replaces Johnson? The Eagles have some candidates on the roster, notably Halapoulivaati Vaitai. Right tackle isn’t necessarily a first-round type of need, either. Regardless, it’s a question mark.

In theory, Ramczyk could play on the left or right, providing the Eagles with options when Peters is finished. Taking a player who isn’t expected to play or contribute with the No. 14 pick in the draft probably isn’t ideal, but it certainly goes a long way toward bolstering Carson Wentz’s protection for the future.

That is, if Ramczyk is more Johnson than Watkins. To be fair, Watkins was sort of a unique case in that he was literally going to school to follow his dreams and accidentally became a football player. Ramczyk was never really sure what he would do after high school, according to Rob Rang for CBS Sports, so why not play football professionally?

No doubt, those are the kinds of questions NFL teams are asking, along with checking into his medical history after undergoing offseason hip surgery. Perhaps then it’s notable the Eagles did not have Ramczyk in for an official top-30 pre-draft visit.

 

Other Eagles draft targets at No. 14:
Tennessee DE Derek Barnett
Michigan DE Taco Charlton
Ohio State CB Gareon Conley
Florida State RB Dalvin Cook
Western Michigan WR Corey Davis
Alabama LB Reuben Foster
LSU RB Leonard Fournette
Alabama TE O.J. Howard
Alabama CB Marlon Humphrey
Washington CB Kevin King
Stanford RB Christian McCaffrey
Michigan State DT Malik McDowell
UCLA DE Takkarist McKinley
Wisconsin OT Ryan Ramczyk
Washington WR John Ross
LSU CB Tre'Davious White
Clemson WR Mike Williams

Chase Utley makes unreal play to save perfect game before no-hit bid ends in walk-off fashion

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Chase Utley makes unreal play to save perfect game before no-hit bid ends in walk-off fashion

Chase Utley has always had a flair for the dramatic.

And not just with his bat or hustle, but also with his glove.

Who can forget this clutch, heads-up play?

At 38 years old, Utley still throws around his body like he's 24 and in his rookie season. The former Phillie showed his signature full-out extension in a huge moment Wednesday night.

Pitching in the eighth inning against the Pirates, Dodgers starter Rich Hill had not allowed a runner to reach base. That looked like it was going to change when Josh Bell laced a liner destined to drop in right field. Utley then stunned everyone at PNC Park by preserving the perfect game bid with a jaw-dropping diving catch.

The best is Utley's typical stoicism, just getting up and acting like, no big deal, one down, fellas.

His teammates had the opposite reaction. They were in amazement, as seen below.

Believe it or not, Hill took a no-hitter into the bottom of the 10th inning when he lost it — and the game — on Josh Harrison's walk-off blast for a 1-0 defeat (see story).

Baseball is a funny game. Right now, the Dodgers are the best at it with an 89-36 record, 13 games ahead of the next closest teams (Nationals and Astros).

Before you know it, the playoffs will be here — and we all know Utley is bound for some October dramatics.

Philly fan takes one last jab at his beloved Eagles' futility in his obituary

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Philly fan takes one last jab at his beloved Eagles' futility in his obituary

Jeffrey Clayton Riegel was a wonderful husband, uncle, brother, and son. He was also a Philadelphia Eagles fan with a pretty good sense of humor.

At least according to his obituary.

Mr. Riegel died on Aug. 18, 2017, at 56 but it appears he had enough time to have some fun on his way out.

His obituary reads relatively standard on the Wimberg Funeral Home website, naming all of the family he leaves behind as well as mentioning some of his favorite greetings for different people and some of his nicknames — some people called him "Toad."

But it's this part that will have Jeffrey smiling in the great beyond:

God gave Jeffrey the miracle of time to prepare which allowed him to verbalize his last wishes. He requested to have 8 Philadelphia Eagles as pall bearers so the Eagles can let him down one last time.

Touche, Mr. Riegel, touche.

Say hello to Reggie, Jerome, and Buddy for us. Maybe they haven't heard a boo in a while, who knows.