First things first:
Go to phillydailynews.com and check out my thoughts on the Eagles’ positional needs, as well as the needs for the other 31 NFL teams. Use the cool interactive chart to see how the Birds’ needs measure up with the rest of the league.
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What the Eagles do with their first-round draft pick will, in large part, be determined by what the three teams in front of them – Kansas City, Jacksonville and Oakland – do with theirs.
In my first mock draft last week, I had the Eagles taking Central Michigan offensive tackle Eric Fisher at No. 4 after the Chiefs took Texas A&M offensive tackle Luke Joeckel, the Jaguars took Oregon defensive end/linebacker Dion Jordan and the Raiders took Florida defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd.
But it’s very possible both Joeckel and Fisher will be off the board by the time the Eagles are on the clock next Thursday.
For the sake of argument, let’s assume that happens and see the ripple effect it might have on the rest of the first round:
Previous pick: Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M.
Updated pick: Joeckel
Comment: Joeckel and Fisher both are pretty evenly rated, with Fisher holding the edge in length and athleticism. Andy Reid could take either one. But he usually favors the road-graders.
Previous pick: Jordan
Updated pick: Fisher
Comment: Jags need a difference-making pass-rusher, but they also need another tackle to team with Eugene Monroe and protect Blaine Gabbert or whomever the hell ends up being this team’s quarterback. And no, they won’t take Geno Smith. Or maybe they will.
Previous pick: Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida
Updated pick: Floyd
Comment: If the Jags take Fisher, Jordan would still be on the board. If Al Davis still was alive, he’d fall in love with Jordan’s height and 40-time and take him over Floyd, who is the best tackle in the draft. GM Raleigh McKenzie, a former offensive lineman who understands the impact a big-time interior disrupter can have, probably will favor Floyd.
Previous pick: Fisher
Updated pick: Jordan
Comment: It’s possible the Eagles could stay with an offensive tackle and grab ultra-athletic Lane Johnson, but I think that only happens if they’re able to trade down a few spots. I don’t think it’s possible they’ll take Geno Smith. Having coached Jordan at Oregon, Chip Kelly knows better than anyone the havoc he can potentially wreak on quarterbacks, which is what it’s all about.
Previous pick: Ziggy Ansah, DE, BYU
Updated pick: Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma
Comment: Ansah has unlimited potential, but is as raw as can be. With the retirement of Jeff Backus and the departure of Gosder Cherilus, Johnson would help keep Matthew Stafford safe and open holes for the team’s new running back, Reggie Bush.
Previous pick: Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
Updated pick: Milliner
Comment: With a new coaching staff and front office, it’s possible the Browns could pull the plug on QB Brandon Weeden and take Geno Smith here. But I don’t think so.
Previous pick: Johnson
Updated pick: Chance Warmack, G, Alabama
Comment: Cardinals need offensive line help inside and outside. With Johnson gone, they grab the draft’s best guard.
Previous pick: Geno Smith
Updated pick: Jonathan Cooper, G, North Carolina
Comment: Let’s assume the Bills really think Kevin Kolb can be a serviceable starting quarterback if they can keep him healthy.
Previous pick: Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah
Updated pick: Lotulelei
Comment: An edge-rusher like LSU’s Barkevious Mingo is a possibility, but Lotulelei can play either the nose or 5-technique in Jets’ 3-4.
Previous pick: Warmack
Updated pick: Geno Smith
Comment: Jake Locker was 26th in the league in touchdown percentage and 29th in interception percentage last season. Time to roll the dice again at QB in Nashville.
Previous pick: Cooper
Updated pick: D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama
Comment: Chargers will take the best offensive lineman available. With Cooper gone, it’s Fluker.
Previous pick: Fluker
Updated pick: Ansah
Comment: Dolphins have some more pressing needs, but it will be hard for GM Jeff Ireland to pass on a player as talented as Ansah.
Previous pick: Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee
Updated pick: Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame
Comment: Patterson hasn’t been knocking teams’ socks off in pre-draft interviews. Eifert would give Josh Freeman a reliable target over the middle.
Previous pick: Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri
Updated pick: Richardson
Comment: Panthers need an interior playmaker. Richardson would give them that.
Previous pick: Barkevious Mingo, OLB, LSU
Updated pick: Mingo
Comment: Saints are making the switch to a 3-4. Mingo would give them a disruptive force off the edge.
Previous pick: Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia
Updated pick: Austin
Comment: Austin is 6 inches shorter and more than 40 pounds lighter than Patterson. But he’s an intriguing player who can be moved all around the formation.
Previous pick: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
Updated pick: Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas
Comment: One starting safety, Ryan Clark, is 33. The other, Troy Polamalu, just turned 32. Time to replenish.
Previous pick: Manelik Watson, OT, Florida State
Updated pick: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia
Comment: Cowboys need to upgrade their offensive line, but Jones would help with the switch to a 4-3 defense.
Previous pick: Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State
Comment: As I mentioned last week, Giants GM Jerry Reese feels you can never have enough good pass-rushers.
Previous pick: Manti Te’o, ILB, Notre Dame
Comment: With Brian Urlacher gone, the Bears need a new MLB.
Previous pick: Vaccaro
Updated pick: Patterson
Comment: Imagine adding the 6-2 Patterson to a receiving corps that already includes 6-4 A.J. Green, 6-2 Mohamed Sanu and 6-5 tight end Jermaine Gresham.
Previous pick: D.J. Hayden, CB, Houston
Updated pick: Hayden
Comment: Hayden and Janoris Jenkins would give the Rams an impressive cornerback tandem.
Previous pick: Alec Ogletree, ILB, Georgia
Updated pick: Ogletree
Comment: Vikings need a middle linebacker. Ogletree has some on- and off-the-field concerns, but ask him to cover a tight end and he’ll stick to him like glue.
Previous pick: Justin Pugh, OT, Syracus
Updated pick: Pugh
Comment: Colts could go with Watson here, but the short-armed Pugh can play both inside and outside.
Previous pick: De’Andre Hopkins, WR, Clemson
Updated pick: Keenan Allen, WR, Cal
Comment: Vikings can’t go wrong with either of these big wideouts.
Previous pick: Eddie Lacy, RB, Alabama
Updated pick: Lacy
Comment: Packers’ leading rusher had 464 yards last season.
Previous pick: Jamie Collins, OLB, Southern Miss
Updated pick: Collins
Comment: Played with his hand in the dirt for a bad college team, but would be ideal standup replacement for Connor Barwin in Texans’ 3-4.
Previous pick: Kevin Minter, ILB, LSU
Updated pick: Minter
Comment: Joe Mays is a one-dimensional middle linebacker.
Previous pick: Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State
Updated pick: Rhodes
Comment: He’s a 6-1 corner with 4.4 speed and 34-inch arms. For a Patriot defense that gave up 27 passing TDs last year, what’s not to like?
Prevous pick: Eifert
Updated pick: Damontre Moore, DE, Texas A&M
Comment: Falcons need help at defensive end and corner. If they don’t take Moore, Washington CB Desmond Trufant is a possibility.
Previous pick: Datone Jones, DE, UCLA
Updated pick: Jones
Comment: Jones has the versatility to play both the nose and 5-technique in Vic Fangio’s defense.
Previous pick: Matt Elam, S, Florida
Updated pick: Elam
Comment: Elam is shade under 5-10, but is strong against both the run and the pass.