April 05, 2022
After the Philadelphia Eagles' major swap of picks with the New Orleans Saints, the Birds now "only" have two first-round picks in the 2022 NFL Draft, though they still have 10 picks total.
As a reminder, we don't repeat any players from previously published mock drafts, so the pickings are starting to get a little slim. This will be our last Eagles mock until our final one the week of the draft.
Previous Eagles-only mock drafts
We've projected first-round wide receivers (Treylon Burks, Jameson Williams, and Chris Olave) to the Eagles in three of the four previous mock drafts, so why stop now? Yes, the Eagles now only have two first-round picks in the 2022 draft, but they are very clearly looking to upgrade the position, as evidenced by their attempts to sign or trade for guys like Calvin Ridley, Christian Kirk, Allen Robinson, and Robert Woods. If you can't get a good wide receiver to want to come to Philly, give them no choice by drafting one.
Wilson is a player that I didn't profile during the season because my assumption was that the Eagles wouldn't spend a first-round pick on another smallish wide receiver. However, after their attempts to bring in Ridley, Kirk, and Woods (who are all also not exactly hulking beasts), it appears that the Eagles are merely looking for talent at the position as opposed to being hellbent on adding a bigger body.
Wilson has the speed (4.38 40) to play on the outside in the NFL, but he also has toughness and run after catch skills to play in the slot. No matter where you put him, Wilson creates separation with his impressive route-running ability. A look:
A trio of DeVonta Smith, Quez Watkins, and (fill in the first-round WR of your choice), to go along with Dallas Goedert at tight end might actually be a pretty good group for Jalen Hurts or (fill in the Eagles' rookie quarterback in 2023).
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.
Dean is a three-down linebacker who can bring juice to the Eagles' defense in the middle of the field, where, oh by the way, they got destroyed in 2021. Just do it already.
Winfrey was something of a late bloomer as a JUCO transfer who flashed in his first season at Oklahoma in 2020. In 2021, he added some production to his obvious athletic traits, notching 5.5 sacks. But it was at the Senior Bowl where Winfrey made his money. He was unblockable during the week of practices, and unsurprisingly also dominated in the actual Senior Bowl game, collecting 5 tackles and 2 sacks.
He also had an impressive Combine, where he ran a 4.89 40, and measured in with 35 1/4" arms.
The Eagles signed Fletcher Cox back to the team for $14 million on a one-year deal for reasons I'll never understand, but his tenure in Philly does feel like it is soon coming to a close. The Eagles highly value the DT position, and Winfrey is a guy who can add to the rotation long-term alongside Javon Hargrave and Milton Williams.
When the Eagles re-signed Derek Barnett, that felt like a clear indication that the team did not think that one of the premier edge rushing prospects would make it to them at pick 15. On Day 2, there will still be some talented edge rushers available, but they'll be more flawed, of course.
At Ole Miss, Williams aligned as a 4-3 DE as well as a 3-4 OLB with experience dropping into coverage, and he has rushed from the inside on obvious passing downs. In his senior season, Williams racked up 12.5 sacks and 4 forced fumbles.
He also impressed at the NFL Combine by running a 4.46 40.
So why isn't this guy going Round 1? Well, he's bad against the run, and until he gets that fixed he's going to be a sub-package player only. Still, the Eagles only had 29 sacks in 2021, second worst in the NFL. For their purposes, Williams will help generate pressure on the quarterback, and you just worry about the deficiencies later.
Emerson is an under-the-radar cornerback prospect who had 72 tackles and 11 pass breakups in 11 games in 2020. His production dipped a bit in 2021, as he had 49 tackles and three pass breakups. On the downside statistically, he only had 1 career INT, and that was in 2019.
Emerson has great size at 6'2, 201 pounds, and would be a nice fit in Jonathan Gannon's zone-heavy scheme, and he's fast enough (4.53 40) to run with most big-bodied NFL wide receivers. It's probably worth noting that had Jaycee Horn — a player with similar traits — still been available when the Eagles were picking in the 2021 draft, they'd have probably chosen him over DeVonta Smith.
Jones has ideal length with his 35 3/8" arms, and he is an easy mover with good feet and agility who is willing to finish blocks. He has very good athleticism:
Jordan Mailata will be in place at LT for the Eagles for the foreseeable future and Lane Johnson was an All-Pro in 2021. They also have a veteran backup in Le'Raven Clark and one more year of Andre Dillard, unless they are able to trade him for a decent enough draft pick.
The Eagles' line could use a developmental guy who can be a swing tackle off the bench in the short-term, and a potential starter down the line. Jones is a guy who brings out of the box physical skills that Jeff Stoutland can mold over time.
Woods enrolled at Oklahoma State as a quarterback before transitioning to tight end. He didn't do much in three years there, but he broke out in 2021 after transferring to Virginia, where he caught 44 passes for 598 yards and 8 TDs in his senior season.
There are a number of tight ends in this draft with much better career production, but any team drafting Woods will do so on his size and athletic potential.
Woods' profile reminds me a bit of Tyree Jackson's.
Over the last two seasons, Algeier has racked up 2731 rushing yards and 36 TDs on 426 carries (6.4 YPC). He's a big back at 224 pounds who has good vision, contact balance, a nose for the end zone in goal line situations, and juuust enough speed to make the occasional explosive play. A look:
Jordan Howard replacement.
McKinley doesn't have great size, and he didn't have a great workout at the Combine, but he is a highly instinctual, productive, playmaking safety who had 77 tackles and 6 INTs for Oregon in 2021.
The Eagles have a rather obvious need at safety, and McKinley is perhaps a player who can help immediately because of his high football IQ.
Yes, we already got Matt Araiza into a previous mock draft. We also got to PSU's Jordan Stout and Georgia's Jake Camarda.
Wright is a big boy at 245 pounds who wore 97. He is a hangtime guy who averaged 47.5 yards per punt in 2021, with a 44.5 yard net.
Do we have punter highlights, with a bunch of fair catches? You bet your ass we do.
Wright was also a former high school quarterback, and he completed a fake punt throw for Tulane last season.
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