Each week through the 2021 NFL season, we’re going to — simply being sincere right here — overreact to what we’ve seen on the sphere for a special NFL staff and start projecting NFL draft prospects at positions of regarding want.
Consider it as a mini one-team mock draft, with early (Rounds 1-2), center (Rounds 3-4) and late (Rounds 5-7) prospects at every staff’s respective place of concern.
The Eagles traded away QB Carson Wentz this offseason, and it was a thank-god second for lots of the staff’s followers. So why do they nonetheless appear so obsessive about how he is doing this yr? Effectively, it is truly for good purpose.
One of many contingencies of the Wentz commerce, figuring out which choose the Indianapolis Colts will ship to Philly for the 2022 NFL draft, is taking part in time. The choose in query is at present a second-round rounder subsequent yr, however it might convert right into a first-rounder if Wentz takes 75% of the Colts’ regular-season offensive snaps, or 70% in the event that they make the playoffs.
Wentz has performed 270 of Indianapolis’ 275 offensive snaps this season, which is 98%. The Colts are 1-3 by means of 4 video games. Each numbers are terrific information to date for the Eagles.
If the Colts choose finally ends up being a first-rounder, the Eagles might have three very excessive draft picks in 2022. In addition they personal the 1-3 Miami Dolphins’ first-rounder through a pre-draft commerce earlier this yr. If the draft was tomorrow, the Eagles would personal three of the primary 9 total picks.
In fact, Wentz might get harm alongside the best way and derail the Eagles’ desires even after leaving the staff. We nonetheless have 14 regular-season weeks remaining, which is ample time for unhealthy luck to reach. Would not that be becoming? Both approach, GM Howie Roseman and Co. are loaded for the 2022 draft.
However how will they spend their picks? Are the Eagles sure as soon as extra to wheel and deal into the long run? And what are their largest voids? We contemplate the chances.
LSU CB Derek Stingley Jr.
First, the elephant within the room: Is Jalen Hurts the reply? Thus far, he is proven principally properly, together with just a few bumps within the highway. We thought of the QB chance, particularly as loaded because the Eagles are with excessive picks. However finally, we thought that ready yet another yr to draft his potential substitute is a good chance. So we’re working with the concept that he’ll stay the starter.
If the Eagles do land a top-five choose, they’re going to be in vary to take Stingley. He does include some danger, nonetheless. Stingley at present is out indefinitely with a foot damage, and there are some who marvel if he’ll play once more this season.
In his three video games this season, Stingley allowed a 45-yard TD towards UCLA and had some severe tackling woes in that sport, however he clamped down within the subsequent two, permitting just one catch for minus-2 yards.
Though Stingley hasn’t performed at a constantly elite degree since his freshman yr of 2019, he is solely allowed 41.1% of his males’s targets to be caught in three seasons. Many NFL scouts nonetheless consider his potential is sky-high, and he could possibly be this class’ CB1.
The place is a transparent want for the Eagles in the long run. Darius Slay stays a top-tier nook however might be 32 years previous subsequent season. Steven Nelson, who turns 29 shortly, and Avonte Maddox each are scheduled to be free brokers at season’s finish.
This won’t be the super-sexy consequence some followers are hoping for out of a excessive choose (or a number of excessive picks), nevertheless it actually makes ample sense, particularly contemplating the inflow of WR expertise within the NFC East.
We consider Stingley has star potential. His athletic vanity (that is a great factor) and alpha-dog mentality could possibly be a terrific match with the Eagles. He’d have Slay as a terrific mentor and could be handled to day by day battles with DeVonta Smith in follow, which might be appointment viewing.
South Carolina EDGE Kingsley Enagbare
If the Eagles choose excessive sufficient in Spherical 1, Oregon cross rusher Kayvon Thibodeaux would completely be on the radar. Contemplating how a lot the staff appears to worth edge rushers, they may even be keen to maneuver up barely to nab him.
But when that does not occur, we consider they’re going to seize an EDGE prospect pretty quickly thereafter. Brandon Graham and Ryan Kerrigan, who each flip 34 subsequent yr, are set to hit free company. Josh Sweat appears like a burgeoning star on the sting. However Derek Barnett, who is also a free agent, won’t be again.
The Eagles seem love high-motor rushers with athletic juice and size. (Who would not, proper?) Simply after the highest tier of EDGE prospects is a fairly respectable assortment of cross rushers who match this mildew.
We actually just like the match of Enagbare right here, as he can rush from a number of strategies — two- and three-point stances, in and out — is athletic sufficient to drop in house if wanted and has good size (6-foot-4, 10 1/2-inch arms, 34 5/8-inch arms, 80 3/8-inch wingspan). He is additionally a high-energy rusher who retains his motor working sizzling.
Enagbare has been efficient attending to the quarterback this season, regardless of solely being credited for half a sack in 5 video games. He is lived in backfields, even with added blocking consideration, though most of Enagbare’s high-pressure video games this season have come vs. lesser competitors.
We might see him slide only a bit, whilst attractive a prospect as he’s. Enagbare is a part of what appears like a loaded EDGE class, won’t run all that properly in testing drills and will face questions on his restricted manufacturing (11 sacks, three compelled fumbles in 37 profession video games). If that’s the case, he’d be a steal atop Spherical 3 for Philadelphia.
Washington OG Henry Bainivalu
The Huskies’ blocking this season hasn’t matched expectations, and Bainvalu gave the impression to be benched within the opening-game upset to Montana. However he has returned to the lineup at proper guard and stays an NFL prospect after incomes principally Day 3 grades this summer time.
Groups will do some digging on his character after a three-game suspension just a few seasons in the past, however Bainivalu has the potential to be a greater professional than he is been in a good however considerably underwhelming profession. And at an estimated 6-foot-6 and 340 kilos, he matches mildew of the big-bodied blocker with comparatively good athletic expertise the Eagles typically goal.
He began out at sort out and has performed each OG and OT spots in his profession, however Bainivalu initiatives to protect on the subsequent degree — and he is been a relative fixture at proper guard for the reason that begin of the 2020 season.
The Eagles do not know the way far more they’ll rely on Brandon Brooks and Isaac Seumalo, each of whom are on injured reserve. Even with Landon Dickerson approaching as a second-rounder this yr, he might find yourself at heart. Nate Herbig is ok for now, however the Eagles can stand to improve on him.
Mining the later rounds for OL assist looks like a sensible transfer for the Eagles in 2022.