Eagles

NFL draft: Eagles targets for Day 2

NFL draft: Eagles targets for Day 2

The Eagles traded up three spots to get Andre Dillard in the first round of the 2019 NFL draft on Thursday, but they have two more prime picks to go. 

Howie Roseman said a key to the trade-up on Thursday was that the Eagles didn’t want to have to give away either of their two second round picks. Mission accomplished. 

The Eagles enter Day 2 on Friday with pick No. 53 and No. 57 before a vacant third round. No. 57 is their own pick, while No. 53 is the pick they got from the Ravens last year in the trade out of the first round. 

Here’s an updated look at the Eagles’ remaining draft picks: 

2-21-53
2-25-57
4-36-138
5-25-163

And here are 20 really good players who are still on the board after Round 1 (in alphabetical order). There’s a good chance one or two of them will be Eagles by the end of the night: 

Offense

J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, WR, Stanford: The 6-2, 225-pound receiver from Stanford is a big and strong receiver, who is a jump-ball specialist. Not the fastest guy, but definitely knows how to use his body. In his senior year, he caught 63 passes for 1,059 yards and 14 touchdowns. 

A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss: One of my favorite receivers in this class, Brown is a do-it-all man and the Eagles have shown a lot of interest. He could be a replacement for Nelson Agholor in the slot this year or next. He had over 75 catches and 1,200 yards in each of his last two seasons at Ole Miss. 

Hakeem Butler, WR, Iowa State: There was some talk that Butler could be a first-round pick but he’s still available. At 6-foot-5, with a long stride, he’s much faster than he is quick, running a 4.48 at the combine to go along with a 36-inch vert and a 128-inch broad jump. In his junior year, he caught 60 passes for 1,318 yards and nine touchdowns.  

Parris Campbell, WR, Ohio State: He ran an eye-popping 40-yard dash of 4.31 at the combine but could be an adequate slot replacement for Agholor with similar explosiveness. He’s not a great route runner yet, but he certainly has the kind of speed to worry defenses as a gadgety player. 

Cody Ford, OL, Oklahoma: Would the Eagles go OL again? Well, if Ford is there, they’d better think about it. Ford can play tackle and guard, but he best projects as a guard at the next level. He’s one player I’m most surprised made it out of the first round. 

Darrell Henderson, RB, Memphis: There’s a chance the Eagles go running back in Round 2 and Henderson is an option. At 5-8, 208, he is an explosive player who is a true dual threat as a receiver out of the backfield. In three years at Memphis, he had over 4,300 yards from scrimmage. 

David Montgomery, RB, Iowa State: Montgomery is another dual threat back, who’s not as explosive as Henderson, but could become a feature guy. He had a really solid career in college and would be a safe pick for the Eagles. 

Dalton Risner, OL, Kansas State: Like Ford, Risner is a prospect with a background as a tackle and guard. Not sure where he’s better suited in the NFL, but he’s a guy that could have been a first round pick. There would be value at 53 or 57. 

Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina: At 5-11, 214 pounds, Samuel is a tough kid who could help outside or more likely in the slot. His best college year came in 2018 as a senior, when he caught 62 passes for 882 yards and 11 touchdowns. He was also a productive kick returner in college. 

Miles Sanders, RB, Penn State: The guy who sat behind Saquon Barkley ended up being pretty good himself and still has plenty of tread left on his tires because of it. In 2018, Sanders had over 1,200 rushing yards and 139 receiving yards. He’s a dual threat who could become a feature back. The Eagles have shown a ton of interest in him and he’s one of my predictions for tonight. 

Defense 

Zach Allen, DE, Boston College: In another year, Allen might have been a first-round pick. He’s 6-4, 281 pounds and can rush the passer and stop the run. He’s an instinctive, work-hard player who had 16 1/2 sacks in his career at BC. He seems like a Joe Douglas type and he’s my other prediction for the second round. 

Jaylon Ferguson, DE, Louisiana Tech: Another guy who some thought would go Round 1, Ferguson is 6-5, 271 pounds and is a player who would be an immediate rotational player with good upside. He had 17 1/2 sacks last year. 

Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, S, Florida: Some thought Gardner-Johnson would be a target for the Eagles at 25, but he’s still on the board. He’s a physical player and a big playmaker. He could be immediately a third safety and grow into a starter role. 

Christian Miller, DE, Alabama: At 6-3, 247, Miller would need to put on weight to play in the Eagles’ 4-3, but he’s a talented pass rusher and is a really good athlete. He was a part of a great defense, which is good and bad. It’s hard to know how good he is based on playing next to great players. 

Byron Murphy, CB, Washington: I never thought the Eagles were going corner in the first round, but if one of the top guys is still available at 53 or 57, they’d have to think about it. He might project as a nickel corner, but some thought he was the top corner in the class. 

Khalen Saunders, DT, Western Illinois: Maybe this is a little early for Saunders, but he’s extremely athletic for his size. He ran a 5.01 time in the 40 and had a 7.57 in the 3-cone drills. Those are incredible numbers for a guy who is 324 pounds, like all-time numbers. So he’d fit as a run-stuffing rotational player who can also get upfield and after QBs. 

Juan Thornhill, S, Virginia: I thought Darnell Savage was a possibility in Round 2 and he went at 21 to the Packers. Thornhill is another safety who tested well and is firmly in the conversation for Round 2. Thornhill isn’t just a combine freak, he has the tape to back it up. 

Greedy Williams, CB, LSU: Another top CB prospect that fell. The Eagles might not be looking for a corner, but if he’s available when they pick, they’d have to think about it. 

Chase Winovich, DE, Michigan: He had 34 1/2 sacks in the last two years playing against major competition. This guy crushed the combine and is relentless in pursuit. If the Eagles take him, he’ll become a fan favorite before long. 

Mack Wilson, LB, Alabama: Had to throw a bone to the linebacker crew. The Devins came off the board long before they were in range for the Eagles and the Birds were never going to take a LB in Round 1 anyway. If Wilson is available at 53, the Eagles might have to buck their philosophy and at least think about it.

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Eagles have reportedly hired Marquand Manuel as the new secondary coach

Eagles have reportedly hired Marquand Manuel as the new secondary coach

Marquand Manuel is the Eagles’ new secondary coach, according to a tweet by Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.

The 40-year-old Manuel replaces Cory Undlin, who had served in that role since 2015, first under Chip Kelly and the last four years under Doug Pederson. Undlin was named Lions defensive coordinator two weeks ago.

Manuel and Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz go back a ways. Manuel played for the Lions in 2009 when Schwartz was their head coach.

Manuel was not in the NFL this past year. He spent the previous four years under Dan Quinn with the Falcons, two years as secondary coach and two years as defensive coordinator before getting fired following the 2018 season.

The Falcons reached the Super Bowl in his second year in Atlanta, losing to the Patriots in Houston.

Before Atlanta, Manuel spent three years working under Quinn with the Seahawks, holding a variety of titles on the defensive staff.

Manuel, who played for Steve Spurrier at Florida, was the Bengals’ 6th-round pick in 2002 and spent eight years as a safety in the NFL with six different teams — the Bengals, Seahawks, Packers, Panthers, Broncos and Lions.

He played in 116 games, starting 58, with two interceptions and a pick-6 while he was with the Packers in 2006 off Jon Kitna of the Lions.

The Eagles also reportedly interviewed Browns defensive backs coach DeWayne Walker for the position.

The Eagles already have a safeties coach on the staff, former Eagle Tim Hauck. He was Pederson's teammate with the Eagles in 1999 and has been on Pederson's staff since 2016.

Quinn had this to say about Manuel on the Falcons’ web site back in 2018:

From the time I've met him from now, one thing that's cool to see that has stayed consistent is the energy and enthusiasm he has for players. He made the transition from player to coach really seamlessly because he knew the boundaries of coach, but he also stepped across to say, I can push you. That's not easy to do. He's always had mental quickness of a quarterback or someone who gets concepts really quickly. That transferred into this coaching fast. He can communicate concepts and ideas quickly to people on the run, in the moment, that's a really valuable asset as a coach.

The Eagles still have openings to replace the three assistant coaches Doug Pederson fired: offensive coordinator Mike Groh, wide receivers coach Carson Walch and defensive line coach Phillip Daniels.

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Eagles might lose executive Andrew Berry after all

Eagles might lose executive Andrew Berry after all

Just a few days ago, it seemed like the Eagles weren’t going to lose Vice President of Football Operations Andrew Berry because it looked like the Browns were going to hire someone else.

Well, that someone else has dropped out of the race.

Vikings assistant GM George Paton has taken himself out of the running to be the Browns’ next general manager, which means Berry is now the new favorite, according to Cleveland.com

This is certainly an interesting turn of events.

According to Cleveland.com, “Paton was reluctant to accept the initial interview because he assumed the job would go Berry.”

Now it might.

It would have made plenty of sense for the Browns to hire Paton, who has a long-standing relationship with new head coach Kevin Stefanski from their time together in Minnesota. But according to reports over the past few weeks, it seems like Berry has been a favorite of ownership and the front office.

While Berry and Stefanski have never worked together, they did get to know each other during the coaching search in Cleveland a year ago. After that search, the Browns hired Freddie Kitchens and Berry left for Philly. But now, Berry and Stefanski might actually get a chance to work with one another.

The Harvard-educated Berry, 32, was with the Browns from 2016-18 as their Vice President of Player Personnel before he joined the Eagles last season in a role they created for him. Berry initially came up in the Colts franchise, first as a scouting assistant and finally as a pro scouting coordinator. He’s been a quick-riser in the NFL world.

Earlier this offseason, the Eagles reportedly denied a request from the Panthers to interview Berry for a Vice President job. The reasoning from the Eagles was that it wasn’t a general manager position and he wouldn’t have had final say on personnel matters.

Final say is something Berry will likely never have here in Philadelphia. Despite a few missteps in recent years, Howie Roseman has pretty solid job security and he isn’t going anywhere. If Berry is going to become a GM, it’s going to be in another city. And it seems like that day might be coming soon.

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