Assigning grades the day after the draft is kind of like assigning grade-point averages to babies the day after they're born.
It's too early. Way too early. Nobody knows. Nobody has a clue.
But they're fun to look at, and at a minimum they give us an idea of what people around the country think of what the Eagles are doing.
The Eagles only had five picks in this year's draft, but the 10 draft analysts we checked all had positive reviews of what Howie Roseman, Joe Douglas and Co. accomplished from Thursday through Saturday.
The Eagles got five A's, four B's and one "above average" from the 10 random draft analysts we checked.
Here's a rundown of those 10 grades with my comments on each one:
What they said: “(Andre) Dillard and Lane Johnson will form a great tandem whenever (Jason) Peters moves on. (Miles) Sanders will be an impact back who could see his role grow quickly with Jordan Howard due to become a free agent after the 2019 season. (JJ) Arcega-Whiteside will be a red-zone stud and general safety valve for Carson Wentz. (Shareef) Miller will offer a strong pass rush for the Eagles despite falling to the end of the fourth round. The (Clayton) Thorson pick made plenty of sense with Wentz coming off injury and Nick Foles gone."
Roob’s take: This guy loves the Eagles’ draft! The odds that all five guys will actually contribute are slim, but none of them seems like a ridiculous pick off the bat. He makes a great point about Arcega-Whiteside. I don’t know if he’ll ever be a star, but he certainly does have a knack for the end zone.
What they said: “It’s curious that they didn’t address cornerback.”
Roob’s take: No, it’s not curious that they didn’t address cornerback. Nobody thought they were drafting a cornerback. Nobody. They have tons of promising young corners. Sidney Jones is 22, Rasul Douglas and Avonte Maddox are 23, Cre’Von LeBlanc is 24, Ronald Darby and Jalen Mills are 25. Come on now, Dan.
What they said: “Philly hit a home run with (Dillard) at No. 22. JJ Arcega-Whiteside, a PFF favorite and first-round talent on the final board, is a steal for Philly at pick No. 57. (Miller) still has a long way to go before he’s a finished product in the NFL.”
Roob’s take: I think this last point an important one. Even defensive ends drafted in the highest rounds need a couple years to figure out the NFL game. It's a very tough position for a young guy to come in and master. Miller, as a fourth-round pick, is definitely a pick for the future, and I wouldn’t have very high expectations of him right off the bat.
What they said: “Every pick made sense for the Eagles, especially when you look a few years down the road. “
Roob’s take: That’s what the draft’s all about, drafting for 2021, 2022 and 2023, not necessarily trying to fill in spots on the 2019 depth chart. Howie Roseman and Joe Douglas were true to their board, avoided the temptation to reach for a safety early and wound up with who they believe are the best players they could get at each spot.
What they said: “This class isn’t blowing anyone away with only five draftees, but its grade improves when you include pick-swap acquisitions WR DeSean Jackson and DT Hassan Ridgeway.”
Roob’s take: This is important to remember. If you’re going to complain that the Eagles only had five picks, you have to remember that Roseman turned 6th- and 7th-round picks in this year’s draft into Jackson and Ridgeway. We all know what Jackson can do, and the Eagles have had their eye on Ridgeway for a while and believe he’s a better fit here than he was in Indianapolis. I’m guessing Jackson and Ridgeway will help more than anybody the Eagles could have taken with the 208thand 246th picks.
What they said: “I like what Roseman & Co. did this weekend, but it's tough to say it's stellar with just five picks. I do expect Philly to be a playoff team again in 2019.”
Roob’s take: I expect that, too. This is a team that won 10 regular-season games and a playoff game in 2018, and I think they’ve gotten better.
What they said: “Howie Roseman leapfrogged the Texans for Dillard, the best pass blocker in the draft and the likely replacement next season for 37-year-old Jason Peters. Sanders isn’t Saquon Barkley, but he averaged 6.0 yards per carry at Penn State. WR JJ Arcega-Whiteside (80-inch wingspan) will be another big red-zone target for Carson Wentz. QB Clayton Thorson has a chance to be the new Nick Foles.”
Roob’s take: Very positive evaluation from Giants country.
What they said: “The Eagles clearly know what they are doing on draft day.”
Roob’s take: They do seem to have a plan and they stick to it. You can never totally prevent busts, but it does seem like the Eagles’ scouting structure is in a place right now to minimize those disastrous mistakes a la Jon Harris, Danny Watkins and Marcus Smith.
What they said: “It's a compact class, but a solid one.”
Roob’s take: A pretty healthy undrafted free agent group should help the Eagles make up for the fact that for the second straight year they only had five picks. Check out the NBC Sports Philadelphia's undrafted rookie free agent tracker here.
What they said: “Miles Sanders could be a rookie of the year dark horse for a team that struggled to fill the position in 2018. First-round LT Andre Dillard and the other second rounder, WR JJ Arcega-Whiteside, look like shrewd investments who may not have to start for another year.”
Roob’s take: Two shrewd investments and a rookie of the year darkhorse and they get a B? This dude’s a tough grader.
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