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November 20, 2021

Five college prospects who could interest the Eagles in the 2022 NFL Draft

Eagles NFL
112021CobyBryant Albert Cesare/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK

Cincinnati CB Coby Bryant

During the college football season each year, as long as you're watching the games, we point out five players each week to keep an eye who make logical sense for the Eagles in the following year's draft.

Jermaine Johnson (11), DE, Florida State (6'5, 260): Florida State at Boston College, 12:00 p.m.

Johnson caught my eye earlier this season, when he was disruptive all night in a game against Notre Dame. As you'll see in the video below, Johnson played all over the line. Right side, left side, hand in the dirt, standing up as a 3-4 OLB, and even over the nose. That versatility should be appealing to the Eagles. 

Coming out of high school, Johnson had bad grades and was academically ineligible for scholarship offers. He played a couple of years at a JUCO school, excelled on the field, got better grades, and transferred to Georgia. He was productive in a rotational role, but transferred to Florida State, where he could get more playing time.

In 2021, Johnson has 10.5 sacks and 2 forced fumbles. He has good speed, an assortment of pass rush moves, and as noted above, the ability to play in multiple schemes. Day 2 guy, in my opinion.

Will McDonald IV (9), SAM, Iowa State, SAM, Iowa State (6'4, 245): Iowa State at (13) Oklahoma, 12:00 p.m.

McDonald is an under the radar pass rusher prospect who has racked up 10 sacks and 4 forced fumbles in 2021 after a 2020 season in which he posted 10.5 sacks and 2 forced fumbles. He has speed, twitch, and impressive change of direction. A quick taste:

As you can see from the below (unofficial) stat, he's atop the big boy 2022 pass rusher prospects in generating pressure in obvious pass rush situations.

The issue with McDonald is that he's a liability against the run, and as a down lineman, can only be a situational pass rusher at the next level, unless his run defense improves substantially. However, for the Eagles' purposes, McDonald has shown that he can drop into coverage.

He could perhaps be a candidate for the SAM position currently being wasted on Genard Avery. In that role, he wouldn't often be asked to hold the point of attack at the line of scrimmage against the run and could use his athleticism to attack.

DeMarvion Overshown (0), LB, Texas (6'4, 223): Texas at West Virginia, 12:00 p.m.

In 2020, in his first year as a linebacker (converted from safety), Overshown had 60 tackles (8 for loss), 2 INTs, and 7 pass breakups. So far in 2021, he has 72 tackles (5.5 for loss), 2 sacks, and 2 pass breakups. He is a tall, fast linebacker prospect with some ball skills:

The Eagles haven't had much luck with safeties turned project linebackers (JaCoby Stevens, Nate Gerry, Kamu Grugier-Hill, etc.), but they seem determined to make one pan out.

Coby Bryant (7), CB, Cincinnati (6'1, 198): SMU at (5) Cincinnati, 3:30 p.m.

The Bearcats have an outstanding cornerback duo in Ahmad "Sauce" Gardner and Bryant, who has racked up 9 INTs and 35 pass breakups over the least four seasons. A highlight reel:

The Kobe Bryant references will get annoying really quickly, but Coby Bryant is a smart corner who excels in zone coverage, and would be an easy fit in Jonathan Gannon's defense.

Abram Smith (7), RB, Baylor (5'11, 221): (11) Baylor at Kansas State, 5:30 p.m.

Smith is a fun prospect in that he played LB as a junior (48 tackles, 5 for loss, and a sack), but is now having a huge senior season as a running back, as he is fifth in the nation with 1203 rushing yards on 7.3 yards per carry. He has good size, good enough speed, and he's a physical "get it and go" runner.

Smith would give the Eagles a Jordan Howard-like style, but with fresh legs, and obviously with his experience playing defense could also be an immediate contributor on special teams.

Previously profiled players

August 28

  1. Jake Hansen, LB, Illinois
  2. Jeffrey Gunter, SAM, Coastal Carolina
  3. Zach Harrison, EDGE, OSU
  4. Daniel Faalele, OT, Minnesota
  5. Mohamed Ibrahim, RB, Minnesota

September 4

  1. Evan Neal, OT, Alabama
  2. Bubba Bolden, S, Miami
  3. Adam Anderson, SAM, Georgia
  4. Derion Kendrick, CB, Georgia
  5. Justyn Ross, WR, Clemson

September 11

  1. Kayvon Thibodeaux, DE, Oregon
  2. Sevyn Banks, CB, Ohio State
  3. Charlie Kolar, TE, Iowa State
  4. Aidan Hutchinson, DE, Michigan
  5. Drake London, WR, USC

September 18

  1. Myjai Sanders, DE, Cincinnati
  2. Marcelino McCrary-Ball, DB, Indiana
  3. Nik Bonitto, SAM, Oklahoma
  4. Kaiir Elam, CB, Florida
  5. Kingsley Enagbare, DE, South Carolina

September 25

  1. Kyle Hamilton, S, Notre Dame
  2. Treylon Burks, WR, Arkansas
  3. DeMarvin Leal, DT, Texas A&M
  4. Zonovan "Bam" Knight, RB, NC State
  5. Merlin Robertson, SAM, Arizona State

October 2

  1. Jalen Catalon, S, Arkansas
  2. Ahmad "Sauce" Gardner, CB, Cincinnati
  3. Isaiah Foskey, DE, Notre Dame
  4. Darian Kinnard, OT, Kentucky
  5. Ali Gaye, DE, LSU

October 9

  1. Matt Corral, QB, Ole Miss
  2. Avery Young, CB/S, Rutgers
  3. Jaquan Brisker, S, Penn State
  4. Riley Moss, CB, Iowa
  5. Kenyon Green, OG/OT, Texas A&M

October 16

  1. Brandon Joseph, S, Northwestern
  2. George Karlaftis, DE, Purdue
  3. Martin Emerson, CB, Mississippi State
  4. Ikem Ekwonu, OG/OT, NC State
  5. Breece Hall, RB, Iowa State

October 23

  1. Brandon Smith, LB, Penn State
  2. David Bell, WR, Purdue
  3. Andrew Booth, CB, Clemson
  4. Sam Williams, DE, Ole Miss
  5. Drake Jackson, DE, USC

October 30

  1. Kenny Pickett, QB, Pittsburgh
  2. Daxton Hill, S, Michigan
  3. Nakobe Dean, LB, Georgia
  4. Chris Rodriguez, Jr., RB, Kentucky
  5. Nicholas Petit-Frere, OT, Ohio State

November 6

  1. Malik Willis, QB, Liberty
  2. Kenneth Walker III, RB, Michigan State
  3. Roger McCreary, CB, Auburn
  4. Jaxson Kirkland, OT/OG, Washington
  5. Cameron Thomas, DE, San Diego State

November 13

  1. Perrion Winfrey, DT, Oklahoma
  2. Devin Lloyd, LB, Utah
  3. Carson Strong, QB, Nevada
  4. Cole Turner, TE, Nevada
  5. Matt Araiza, P, San Diego State

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