Eagles Looking to Add Speed with First Round Pick
With the NFL Draft just 5 days away, fans of all 32 NFL teams are looking for their teams to make a splash. One team in prime position to select a player that can immediately make their team a legitimate Super Bowl contender is the Philadelphia Eagles. The 2019 NFC division champs are looking to add speed through this year's draft, specifically at Wide Receiver and Linebacker. The Eagles were decimated with injuries last year, and both positions must be addressed with early round picks by Eagles General Manager Howie Roseman. Roseman has done a great job addressing most of the team's needs through free agency, but this draft remains vitally important for the Eagles. The new NFL Playoff platform only gives each conference one bye. As the only team in the NFC East with their head coach returning from last season, the Eagles need to take advantage of their continuity. Here are some notable prospects I believe are good fits for the Birds:
Justin Jefferson: Wide Receiver (LSU)
ATLANTA, GEORGIA - DECEMBER 07: Justin Jefferson #2 of the LSU Tigers runs with the ball against Eric Stokes #27 of the Georgia Bulldogs in the second half during the SEC Championship game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on December 07, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Measurables: 6’1” | 202 lbs 40-yd dash: 4.43 Vertical: 37.5 in. Broad Jump: 126 in. 2019 Stats: 111 Receptions, 1,540 Yards, 18 TD The Eagles desperately need help at the Wide Receiver position. Not a single Receiver or Tight End surpassed the 1,000-yard receiving mark in 2019. Carson Wentz needs help for the Eagles to be legitimate contenders. Also, with DeSean Jackson (33 years old) and Alson Jeffery (30 years old) both coming off of injury-ridden seasons, it makes too much sense for the Eagles to take a Wide Receiver with the 21st pick. Jefferson is an outstanding route runner and tracks the ball well. The soon to be former LSU Tiger excels in the Redzone and has great body control. Jefferson caught 13 Redzone touchdowns last season, which is the most out of any player in this year’s draft. Jefferson needs to improve his strength and blocking ability, but he has the potential to be a great NFL Wide Receiver.
Denzel Mims: Wide Receiver (Baylor)
WACO, TX - NOVEMBER 3: Denzel Mims #15 of the Baylor Bears celebrates with his teammates after scoring the game winning touchdown on a 6 yard reception against the Oklahoma State Cowboys during the second half of an NCAA football game at McLane Stadium on November 3, 2018 in Waco, Texas. (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Measurables: 6’3” | 207 lbs 40-yd dash: 4.38 Bench Press: 16 reps Vertical: 38.5 in. Broad Jump: 131 in. 2019 Stats: 66 Receptions, 1,020 Yards, 12 TD The Eagles lacked explosiveness at the Wide Receiver position in 2019. With DeSean Jackson injured for most of the 2019 season, the Eagles did not have the vertical threat that they needed. Mims is a big and explosive receiver with a large catch radius. The 6’ 3'' Wideout consistently made contested catches with his large frame. Mims is a clear red zone target, but he also has great run after catch abilities. Mims is also a great open field blocker, which will help him stay on the field for all 3 downs. There are flashes of greatness from Denzel Mims, but consistency may be the problem at the next level.
Patrick Queen: Linebacker (LSU)
TUSCALOOSA, ALABAMA - NOVEMBER 09: Patrick Queen #8 of the LSU Tigers celebrates after intercepting a pass during the second quarter against the Alabama Crimson Tide in the game at Bryant-Denny Stadium on November 09, 2019 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Measurables: 6’0” | 229 lbs 40-yd dash: 4.50 Bench: 18 reps Vertical: 35 in. Broad Jump: 125 in. The Eagles defense was anything but good last year. Howie Roseman fixed the needs in the secondary with the recent additions of Darius Slay, Will Parks and Nickell Robey-Coleman. However, the Eagles released LB Nigel Bradham this offseason, and the Inside Linebacker position needs to be filled. Patrick Queen is just the right fit. The Eagles want speed on defense and there is no better player for that than Patrick Queen. Queen would be a great fit in the Eagles 4-3 Defense, and has sideline to sideline speed, along with very good instincts. The LSU linebacker also has a high football IQ. Queen always knows where his Defensive Linemen need to line up, making him a candidate to wear the green dot on his helmet early in his career. Queen is a little undersized at the Inside Linebacker position, but he uses his quickness to his advantage. He can cover both Running Backs out of the backfield and Tight Ends going up the seam. The Eagles can’t go wrong with any of these prospects. All three prospects would make an immediate impact for the reigning NFC East Champs, and help them achieve their ultimate goal of winning Super Bowl LV. Stay tuned and expect a draft recap. Stay safe and hopefully, football will return shortly.