Eagles

Eagles

For months, it seems like Dalvin Cook has been many fans' choice for the Eagles in the first round of the draft. 

Once Sidney Jones, considered by many to be the top corner in the draft, blew out his Achilles, it seemed like the love for Cook only grew. 

But what if the Birds take a different running back at 14? 

That's exactly how things shake out in Todd McShay's latest mock draft, released by ESPN on Wednesday. He has the Eagles taking Christian McCaffrey at 14 and Cook going at 17 to Washington.

Here's what McShay wrote: 

"McCaffrey has a ton of versatility: He can handle 10 or so carries per game, catch passes as a slot receiver and contribute in the return game. He had an exceptional week at the combine, showing off his straight-line speed and short-area quickness. McCaffrey's elite character could be the tiebreaker with Florida State RB Dalvin Cook for some teams."

Later on Wednesday morning, McShay held a conference call with reporters from around the country about April's draft. 

He said this running back class could end up being as good as the 2008 class. That season Darren McFadden, Jonathan Stewart, Felix Jones, Rashard Mendenhall and Chris Johnson all went in the first round. 

Then, Matt Forte and Ray Rice came off in the second round and Jamaal Charles in the third. 

 

McShay has four running backs going in the first round. While McCaffrey hasn't been mocked high by many yet, McShay expects that to change. 

"Christian McCaffrey will continue to rise as we get closer to the draft just because he put up explosive numbers at the combine that you were hoping to see based off of the tape," he said on the conference call. "And I thought they were even better than what the projections were. And his character is off the charts, his versatility and just his work ethic."

McCaffrey put up really solid stats at Stanford and is a true dual-threat running back, much like Cook. While his numbers at Stanford were good, his numbers at the combine might have been even better. 

In Indy, McCaffrey ran a 4.48 in the 40, had a 37.5 vertical jump, a 6.57 in the 3-cone drill, a 4.22 in the 20-yard shuttle and an 11.03 in the 60-yard shuttle. His performance in those events made up for 10 reps on the bench.