April 29, 2022
Here are 15 players who could make sense for the Birds in Round 3. The Eagles will pick 83rd overall, which is the 19th pick in the third round.
• Malik Willis, QB, Liberty: Willis is sort of a wildcard player in this draft, in that it's not expected that the Eagles will take a quarterback early, and yet there's a decent argument to take Willis, specifically. He's a dual-threat quarterback whose running style is reminiscent of Jalen Hurts, in that they're both strong runners who can shake tacklers. He also shares some of Hurts' passing traits, in that his decision-making and accuracy need to improve. What sets Willis apart from Hurts, however, is his pure arm talent, which gives him more upside.
• Nakobe Dean, LB, Georgia: Dean patrolled the middle of the field in Georgia's smothering, national championship defense in 2021. He's undersized, and while he did not work out at the Combine or Georgia's pro day, he's explosive on tape. Dean can cover running backs out of the backfield and blitz in the passing game. Against the run, he can either slither through blocks and make tough tackles in the box, or in pursuit outside of the tackles.
• Christian Harris, LB, Alabama: Harris played some safety, cornerback, and wide receiver in high school before settling in as an undersized linebacker in college. He was a tone setter in Bama's defense, with the athleticism to run sideline to sideline in the run game, and the ability to get to wide areas of the field in coverage. UPDATE: GONE.
• Chad Muma, LB, Wyoming: Muma lit up the stat sheet in 2021, racking up 142 tackles (more than 10 per game) and 3 INTs (two of which were pick-sixes) in 13 games. In 2020, he had 71 tackles (8 for loss) in 6 games, or almost 12 per game. He has instincts, athleticism, and some pop. UPDATE: GONE.
• Desmond Ridder, QB, Cincinnati: Ridder is a dual-threat quarterback prospect with good size and a strong arm who led Cincinnati to a lot of wins over his college career. As a four-year starter, Ridder racked up an extremely impressive 44-6 overall record, and a career 87 passing TDs vs. 28 INTs. If there's a knock on him, it's inconsistent accuracy. UPDATE: GONE.
• Tariq Woolen, CB, UTSA: Size-athleticism freak of nature who measured in at 6'4, with a 4.26(!) 40.
• Cameron Thomas, DL, San Diego State: Like Milton Williams, Thomas was initially a DT in college who moved to DE. High energy rusher who had 71 tackles (20 for loss) and 10.5 sacks in 2021.
• Leo Chenal, LB, Wisconsin: Good size at 6'3, 250 who had an outstanding workout at the Combine. 115 tackles, 8 sacks, and 2 forced fumbles in 2021.
• Nick Cross, S, Maryland: 4.34 speed. 66 tackles, 3 sacks, 3 INT in 2021.
• Marcus Jones, CB/KR/PR, Houston: Jones had a hell of a season in 2021. He had 47 tackles, 5 INTs, 13 pass breakups, and he returned 4 kick/punts for touchdowns, bringing his career KR/PR TD return count to 9. He also even had 10 receptions on offense for 109 yards and a TD.
• Sam Howell, QB, North Carolina: Back in November, Howie Roseman made a rare visit to a college game when he saw Pittsburgh take on North Carolina. Most assumed that Roseman was there to see Pitt quarterback Kenny Pickett, which is probably true, but he no doubt was also watching Howell. Some had Howell as the No. 1 quarterback prospect in the 2022 NFL Draft before the start of the 2021 college season, but his production dropped off after the Tar Heels lost four skill players — running backs Javonte Williams and Michael Carter, as well as wide receivers Dyami Brown and Dazz Newsome — to the NFL. Still, Howell's body of work at UNC is impressive, especially for a player who started as a true freshman. Without his 2020 weapons around him, it should be noted that Howell became more of a runner in 2021, rushing 170 times for 825 yards and 11 TDs, when he only had 181 rushing yards in his previous two seasons combined.
• DeAngelo Malone, SAM, Western Kentucky: Malone was an undersized, but very productive pass rusher for WKU. In 14 games in 2021, he has 94 tackles (17.5 for loss), 9 sacks, and 4 forced fumbles. Over the last three seasons, he has 26.5 sacks.
• Jeremy Ruckert, TE, Ohio State: Ruckert didn't put up huge numbers at Ohio State playing in an offense with Garrett Wilson and Chris Olave. In 2021, for example, he had 26 catches for 309 yards and 3 TDs. However, when the ball came his way, he was a reliable receiver, and a threat in the red zone. In an Eagles offense where DeVonta Smith and Dallas Goedert are going to be the priorities in the passing offense, a player like Ruckert, who doesn't demand much of a target share but will make the plays when they come his way, would make a lot of sense as a TE2.
• Zyon McCollum, CB, Sam Houston State: Like Tariq Woolen above, McCollum is a size-athleticism freak at 6'2 with a 4.33 40.
• J.T. Woods, S, Baylor: Woods had 5 INTs in 2021, and 3 in 2020. He has excellent speed (4.36) and could play deep responsibilities in the Eagles' defense.
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