Eagles

2017 NFL draft: Hudrick's round-by-round targets for Eagles, 1.0

2017 NFL draft: Hudrick's round-by-round targets for Eagles, 1.0

With my first first-round mock in the books, we take a look at some round-by-round targets for the Eagles throughout the 2017 NFL draft.

Luckily for the Eagles, this draft is extremely deep at wide receiver, corner and running back. While those may be the team's foremost needs, every team could use more depth among the trenches.

Let's take a look at a few prospects the Eagles may look to target in this year's draft.

1st round

Sidney Jones, CB, Washington, (6-1/170)

I've already mocked Jones to the Eagles in the first round. Jones is the most consistent corner in this draft and will make an immediate impact on the Eagles' defense.

Teez Tabor, CB, Florida, (6-0/201)
Tabor has some serious swagger and ball skills (eight career interceptions). I view Jones as the more consistent player between the two, but Tabor would be a fine pick. Many have mocked his Gator teammate, Quincy Wilson, to the Eagles. Jones and Tabor fit more of the profile that defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz tends to look for.

Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan, (6-3/213)
I love this guy. If he's there at 14/15, Howie Roseman will have to look long and hard at Davis. He's big, strong and is the best route runner in the draft. His speed may be questioned, but his tape shows enough game speed to be plenty effective in the NFL.

O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama, (6-6/249)
Howard seems to be a trendy pick among Eagles Twitter. It's an intriguing idea to give Carson Wentz both Zach Ertz and Howard. Put those two in 12 personnel and it's a matchup nightmare for a defense. Howard could turn into an elite tight end and you could certainly make a case for him being the best player available.

2nd round

Tre'Davious White, CB, LSU, (5-11/191)
White is arguably a first-round talent, but this draft is so deep at the corner position, he could slip to Round 2. He also has ability as a punt returner. If the Eagles snag Davis in Round 1, followed by White, that'd be a great start.

Cooper Kupp, WR, Eastern Washington, (6-2/198)
Kupp has great size, runs solid routes and has extremely reliable hands. He's not explosive, so from that perspective, he may not be a great fit. That is unless the Eagles target a receiver like DeSean Jackson or Kenny Stills in free agency. Kupp shined during this year's Senior Bowl.

Dion Dawkins, OL, Temple, (6-4/317)
The Eagles could add offensive line depth from their own backyard (actually their own stadium). Dawkins was the Owls' starting left tackle, but took plenty of reps at the Senior Bowl as a guard and showed "Pro Bowl potential." With the possibility of Jason Kelce becoming a cap causality, Dawkins could add depth at guard with Isaac Seumalo, last year's third-round pick sliding over to center. And with Jason Peters aging, Dawkins adds future depth at tackle.

Other possibilities

Dede Westbrook, WR, Oklahoma, (6-0/176)

Westbrook is arguably the second-most explosive receiver in this draft behind Washington's John Ross. 

Fabian Moreau, CB, UCLA, (6-0/194)
Much like White, Moreau might be a first-round pick in a different draft. He has prototypical size and speed at corner.

Taylor Moton, OL, Western Michigan, (6-5/330)
Much like Dawkins, Moton would add depth at both tackle and guard.

3rd round

Taywan Taylor, WR, Western Kentucky, (5-11/198)

Taylor has become a draft crush for Rotoworld's Josh Norris, and for good reason. Behind Davis, he may be the best route runner in this draft. His suddenness jumps out on tape. He's lightning quick out of his breaks. He's decent after the catch and has OK hands.

Chidobe Awuzie, CB, Colorado, (6-0/205)
Speaking of draft crushes, Awuize has been one of my favorites all season. A two-star recruit out of high school, Awuzie was the second-best corner in the Pac 12 after Jones. He's not the most athletic corner, but he's disruptive, physical and smart. He only had three career interceptions, but registered nine sacks, 25 tackles for a loss and six forced fumbles in his career. The combine will give a better indication of where he should be projected.

Kareem Hunt, RB, Toldeo, (5-11/208)
The more I watch Hunt, the more I love. He has ballerina feet and sneaky power. He was also outstanding as a receiver out of the backfield and had decent moments in pass pro. He was named the North Team's Outstanding Player during the Senior Bowl after running for 118 yards on 15 carries.

Other possibilities

Wayne Gallman, RB, Clemson, (6-0/210)

Gallman got lost on a star-studded offense, but he was a bell cow with great patience and toughness.

Samaje Perine, RB, Oklahoma, (5-10/235)
Perine has crazy power and lives for contact. He's an ideal short-yardage back.

Kevin King, CB, Washington, (6-3/192)
On the other side of Jones, King was tested and passed those tests often. May not be a fit for Schwartz, but he can play.

4th round

Ryan Glasgow, DT, Michigan, (6-3/299)

With Bennie Logan's free agency looming, the Eagles need to look for defensive tackles. There's nothing fancy about Glasgow. He's big, strong and uses his hands well. 

Carlos Henderson, WR, Louisiana Tech, (6-1/191)
Henderson is coming out early after a monster junior season (82 catches, 1,535 yards and 19 TDs). This guy is crazy explosive. His 40 time may give him a bump in projection. If he doesn't run well, the tape shows plenty of game speed. Especially for a guy in the fourth round.

Damontae Kazee, CB, San Diego State, (5-10/183)
Kazee is more of a projection, but his speed is real. So are his balls skills (15 INTs the last two seasons). He needs to learn the nuances of playing corner, but he could be an intriguing ball of clay for Schwartz to mold.

Other possibilities

Davon Godchaux, DT, LSU, (6-4/299)
Glasgow is more of an ideal replacement for Logan, while Godchaux may offer a little more in the pass rush in a rotation with Beau Allen.

Tanoh Kpassagnon, DL, Villanova, (6-7/280)
A physical specimen, Kpassagon may not be an ideal fit for the Eagles' defense, but he's a player who can be disruptive from multiple positions along the line and can fit any system.

5th round

Jamaal Williams, RB, BYU, (6-0/211)
Williams looks like he was made in a running back factory. He has some decent cutback ability but may not have the speed to become a No. 1 back. Williams and Wendell Smallwood, last year's fifth-round pick, could be an interesting tandem. He averaged 5.9 yards a carry as a senior, but didn't show much in the passing game.

Ryan Switzer, WR, North Carolina, (5-9/179)
Switzer will have to play in the slot at the next level, but he should excel there. He runs solid routes, isn't afraid to go over the middle and has extremely reliable hands (74 percent catch rate in 2016). This would mean a shift to the outside for Jordan Matthews, who is up for an extension this offseason.

6th round

Joe Mathis, DE/OLB, Washington, (6-2/255)
Mathis suffered a season-ending foot injury six games into his senior year. It couldn't have come at a worse time for Mathis, who recorded five sacks in his last four games before the injury. It appeared Mathis was on the verge of a breakout season as a DE/OLB. I'd be interested to see what he could do as a 4-3 end. He has a high motor and plays with discipline.

Amba Etta-Tawoo, WR, Syracuse, (6-2/202)
I have no idea what to make of this guy, but it's impossible to deny his production and size. A Maryland transfer, Etta-Tawoo had a monster season with 94 catches, 1,482 yards and 14 TDs. Is he a one-year wonder or can he translate any of that production to the NFL? In the sixth round, he's certainly worth a flier.

7th round

Jahad Thomas, RB, Temple, (5-10/188)

In a deep running back class, one of the greatest backs in Temple history may go undrafted. Thomas carried the load for Temple in 2015, but shared some of it in 2016. One of his best games was a 135-yard, two-touchdown effort in 2015 against a Penn State team that saw three of their defensive linemen become NFL draft picks. Thomas is also a strong receiver out of the backfield, hauling in 33 passes for 418 yards and six touchdowns in 2016.

Noble Nwachukwu, DE, West Virginia, (6-2/275)
Nwachukwu's sacks are all a result of his incredible size and strength. He's super raw, but there may be something to work with here. He struggled with injuries in 2016, but had a quality junior year, recording 7½ sacks and 11½ tackles for a loss.

Eagles Inactives: Alshon Jeffery (ankle) active against Cowboys

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USA Today Images

Eagles Inactives: Alshon Jeffery (ankle) active against Cowboys

ARLINGTON, Texas -- As expected, Alshon Jeffery is active and will play against the Cowboys on Sunday Night Football. 

Jeffery popped up on the injury report Thursday with an ankle injury that has been bothering him for a little while. He came into the weekend listed as questionable. 

But head coach Doug Pederson said he expected Jeffery to play and even Jeffery said he would "most definitely" play in the game. 

Zach Ertz and Ronald Darby are also returning for this game. Ertz missed the Denver game before the bye with a hamstring injury and Darby hasn't played since Week 1 in Washington. 

The Eagles' inactives are Nate Sudfeld, Shelton Gibson, Steven Means, Elijah Qualls, Wendell Smallwood, Will Beatty and Dannell Ellerbe. 

This is the first healthy scratch of the season for Smallwood. The only reason he was active before the bye week was because of Zach Ertz's hamstring injury that kept him out of the game. Smallwood is the biggest loser after the team brought in Jay Ajayi. 

Beatty and Ellerbe are inactive after being added to the roster last week. During the week, Pederson said he wanted them to get more time with the team before throwing them out there.

The Cowboys' inactives are Tyron Smith, Sean Lee, Dan Bailey, Jeff Heath, Darren McFadden, Daniel Ross, Blake Jarwin.

Breaking down Eagles' 2018 Pro Bowl chances

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AP Images

Breaking down Eagles' 2018 Pro Bowl chances

Pro Bowl voting began this past week, and ideally, the Eagles won't have anybody actually playing in the game.
 
The 2018 Pro Bowl is scheduled for Jan. 28 — a week before the Super Bowl — and players from the Super Bowl-bound teams will be headed to Minneapolis that weekend, not Orlando, where the Pro Bowl will be held this year.
 
But with the Eagles sitting at 8-1 heading into Sunday's game against the Cowboys, there's a good chance they'll have a sizable contingent selected for the annual exhibition.

Let's take an early look at the Eagles' locks, hopefuls and longshots for 2018 Pro Bowl honors.
 
And remember, once again, the NFL is picking Pro Bowl teams based on the conference.
 
Locks
Carson Wentz: Wentz is a lock to make his first Pro Bowl, which would make him the fourth Eagles quarterback in the last 10 years to receive the honor, following Donovan McNabb, Michael Vick and Nick Foles. No other team has had more than two. Interesting that the Eagles have had only four players make a Pro Bowl team within their first two years since 1990 - Donovan McNabb in 2000, DeSean Jackson in 2009, Nick Foles in 2013 and Cody Parkey in 2014.
 
Fletcher Cox: The only lock from the defense, which is more of a statement on the brand of team defense the Eagles are playing these days than anything else. This will be Cox's third Pro Bowl, something only five Eagles defensive linemen have ever achieved — Reggie White (seven), Hugh Douglas (three), William Fuller (three), Charlie Johnson (three) and Floyd Peters (three).
 
Zach Ertz: It's always tricky for players to get to that first Pro Bowl, but it's hard to imagine Ertz not getting picked. Despite missing the Broncos game, he's been the best tight end in the NFC. He leads all NFC tight ends in catches and yards and is tied for the lead in TDs with Seattle's Jimmy Graham with six. Barring a huge dropoff, Ertz is a lock.
 
Hopefuls
Lane Johnson: Johnson has played at a consistently high level, but a few things are working against him. His two suspensions shouldn't be a factor, but they won't help his chances. Players are branded a certain way, and Johnson has to overcome a league-wide reputation as a guy who's tested positive twice. But if it's based on level of play, he'll go.
 
Jason Kelce: Kelce probably has a better chance than Johnson, just because he's an already a two-time pick and has that Pro Bowl reputation around the league. He made the team last year despite not having a very good year. Kelce has been exceptional this year and is in the middle of the No. 1 offense in the NFL. Close to a lock.
 
Brandon Graham: Graham once again has everything but the sacks. He's played very good football, consistently pressured the quarterback, been exceptional against the run, but … it's all about the sacks with defensive ends. He has 5.0, which is a good number after nine games and just 1 1/2 shy of his career-high of 6 1/2 from 2015, but nine NFC defensive ends have more. Have they played better than Graham? Probably not. But he needs to get to double digits to really have a good shot at making his first Pro Bowl.
 
Malcolm Jenkins: Jenkins made his first Pro Bowl in 2015 and should have made the team last year, but didn't. He's having a great year but doesn't have any interceptions and he's going to probably need at least two or three to get himself in the picture. What he does have going for him is that he's extremely popular among his fellow players. His activism, his strong voice within the NFLPA and his reputation as a guy who's going to fight for player rights will really help. That stuff shouldn't matter but it does.
 
Longshots
Brandon Brooks: Brooks is in his seventh year and has never made a Pro Bowl. The longer you play without making one, the harder it is to get picked. Especially at a non-skill position. But he's sure deserving. That whole right side of the O-line is with Kelce, Brooks and Johnson.
 
Jalen Mills: This is going to come down to interceptions. Mills needs to overcome the fact that he was never a big-name college guy, wasn't a high draft pick and his personality might bug some opposing wide receivers — the ones who vote for CBs. But he's got three interceptions, and right now Detroit's Darius Slay is the only NFC cornerback with more. If he can get to five? He'll be in the mix.
 
Patrick Robinson: Robinson is in a very similar position as Mills. He doesn't have that league-wide reputation as a top corner, but he's sure played like one. Robinson is now with his fourth team in four years, and he's an eighth-year player who's never been a Pro Bowler, so he needs to overcome that journeyman reputation. But like Mills, he has three interceptions. A couple more gets him in the picture.
 
Nigel Bradham: Bradham has one sack, no interceptions, and no forced fumbles. Without stat numbers, it's tough for outside linebackers to make a Pro Bowl team, no matter how solid they are against the run and in coverage. Bradham is a sixth-year veteran without a Pro Bowl on his resume, and he'll probably need INT and sack numbers to make his first one.
 
Jake Elliott: Elliott doesn't have the accuracy of some kickers, so his only chance is to keep racking up the 50-yarders. Going into Dallas, he shares the NFL lead with five 50-yarders, including, of course, the game-winning 61-yarder against the Giants. But overall, he's at 85 percent, which sounds high but is actually only sixth-highest among regular NFC kickers. And he's missed three PATs. His only chance is another game-winner or two and a bunch more 50-yarders.
 
Rodney McLeod: McLeod has a couple interceptions and has played well all year, but it's hard to imagine him making the Pro Bowl and Jenkins not. And it's hard to imagine both safeties getting picked. Like any DB, McLeod can improve his chances with a couple INTs and maybe a pick-six during the voting period.