With Atlanta on the clock with the 16th pick on Thursday night, the timer in the lower left-hand corner began winding down so low it seemed like perhaps a trade was in the works.
And with CeeDee Lamb, the talented wide receiver from Oklahoma still on the board, Eagles fans were understandably hopeful that Howie Roseman was about to pull off some magic to take a player many considered to be the top receiver in a historically deep class.
The Falcons took cornerback A.J. Terrell from Clemson. And to make matters worse, the Cowboys scooped up Lamb with the 17th pick. The Eagles eventually took a different receiver, TCU’s Jalen Reagor, at No. 21.
“It was important for us, certainly, that we kept our high picks,” Roseman said. “We haven’t had a lot of those. And guys really weren’t in the range where it was even in consideration that we could get somewhere with a really high pick.”
I’m told Eagles looked into moving up last night but the cost was at least their second round pick to get ahead of the Cowboys— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) April 24, 2020
Eagles love Jalen Reager’s outside speed and vertical threat to open up offense and can get ball in his hands outside, inside, all over field#Eagles pic.twitter.com/9FPujiwOuI
Jerry Jones said opinion around the NFL that WR was not a priority for the #Cowboys prevented other teams interested in Cee Dee Lamb from trading in front of Dallas. A division rival tried. Failing to trade with Falcons at 16 for Lamb, the #Eagles took WR Jalen Reagor at 21.— Ed Werder (@WerderEdESPN) April 24, 2020
The Eagles came into this draft with just three picks in the first three rounds: 21, 53 and 103. Roseman seemed to intimate that trading up would been too expensive to get into range for one of the top three receivers: Henry Ruggs III, Jerry Jeudy or Lamb.
But Lamb was ranked by many experts as the No. 1 receiver in the class. Not many expected him to be available as long as he was.
So did the Eagles come close to pulling of a trade to get up to 16 to draft Lamb before Dallas?
Late Thursday night, I asked Roseman specifically about any possible discussions to move into the 16th spot and possibly land Lamb.
We’re very aggressive in working the phones and having conversations with teams and trying to figure out where we can move and when we can move,” Roseman said. “It’s gotta work for both sides, obviously. But we were also very comfortable sitting here and taking a player that has a great skillset for what we’re looking for.
Like Coach (Doug Pederson) has said, we knew there were a lot of talented receivers in this [class] and there’s a lot of different flavors. This is the one we felt could really help our football team in multiple ways.
The Eagles ended up with a choice of either Reagor or LSU’s Justin Jefferson at No. 21 and they took Reagor, who they think gives them explosion as a receiver, returner and with the ball in his hands.
Fair or not, Reagor’s career will be measured against the careers of Lamb and Jefferson, who went a pick later.
If Lamb turns out to be the stud many analysts expect, we could be talking about this non-move for years to come.
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