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October 10, 2015

Grocery shopping: Five college players to watch who could interest the Eagles in the 2016 NFL Draft

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101015TylerBoyd Justin Hayworth/AP

The Eagles wouldn't draft another wide receiver early, would they?

As long as you're taking in some college football games today, here are some players who could make some sense for the Eagles in the 2016 NFL Draft. 

To note, if there's a player you have in mind that you think we should have profiled, check the bottom of this post for the players we've looked at in prior weeks. If he's not there, leave your recommendation in the comment section and we'll take a look to see if we agree.

Maurice Canady, CB, Virginia (6'1, 185): Virginia at Pittsburgh, 12:30 p.m.

Of the 31 cornerbacks that were selected in the 2015 NFL Draft, the three corners the Eagles drafted all landed among the top six players in pass breakups the last two years, including the #1 overall player, sixth round pick JaCorey Shepherd, who had 28. Canady fits the profile of a player with good ball skills, as he had 12 pass breakups and three INTs in 2014.

Canady has the length to play on the outside, but he has also been used in the slot. Here you can see him taking back a pick for a TD from the slot:

He also has return skills:

Canady will have a big test today against the next guy on this list...

Tyler Boyd, WR, Pittsburgh (6'2, 200): Virginia at Pittsburgh, 12:30 p.m.

The Eagles have invested heavily in the wide receiver position in the draft over the last two years, so it would be somewhat of a surprise to see them go that direction again. Then again, next offseason will be the Eagles' first chance to be able to rid themselves of Riley Cooper's awful contract and Miles Austin will be another year older.

The three receivers the Eagles drafted the last two years were all very productive heading into the pros. Here were their numbers their final seasons in college:

Player Rec Yards YPC TD 
 Jordan Matthews112 1477 13.2 
 Josh Huff62 1140 18.4 12 
 Nelson Agholor104 1313 12.6 12 

Here were Boyd's numbers his first two seasons at Pitt, as a true freshman/sophomore:

Tyler Boyd Rec Yards YPC TD 
 201385 1174 13.8 
 201478 1261 16.2 
 TOTAL163 2435 14.9 15 

In three games so far this season, Boyd has 26 catches for 274 yards and a TD.

Here's his 2014 season, in video. You'll see good hands, great route-running ability, the ability to break tackles, body control, YAC skills, and a good red zone threat:

The one thing that could keep Boyd from being a first round pick is that he is not blazer. He'll be a player that scouts will watch closely at the Combine.

Cam Sutton, CB, Tennessee (6'0, 189): (19) Georgia at Tennessee, 3:30 p.m.

A theme with the corners we preview here will be pass breakups, as noted above. In 2014, Sutton had 13 of them. As a freshman in 2013, he had seven. Sutton is a highly athletic corner with return ability, and good enough size. The one concern with him is his tackling ability.

A highlight reel:

John Theus, OT, Georgia (6'6, 305): (19) Georgia at Tennessee, 3:30 p.m.

Hey, do ya think the Eagles might need some OL help? Theus will be the seventh offensive lineman we've profiled so far in this series. It is imperative that the Eagles draft offensive line help this offseason after it was already their biggest need area in the draft a year ago.

Theus was the 23rd highest rated player in the country coming out of high school, according to, and he has started at OT in the SEC since he was a freshman. That is some incredible experience.

Here's Theus working against stud pass rusher Vic Beasley last season:

Dean Lowry, DE, Northwestern (6'6, 290): (13) Northwestern at (18) Michigan, 3:30 p.m.

We're digging deep on this one, as Lowry is the 441st rated player in the country on CBS Sports' prospect list, but he seems to fit the profile of long defensive linemen that the Eagles have targeted. "We want taller, longer guys with longer levers that can two-gap," said Chip Kelly back in July. "And if you look at our D-Line, they’re taller and longer than when we first got here." At 6'6, Lowry is obviously tall.

One thing the Eagles will love is that Lowry is a batted pass machine. His batted passes, by season:

• 2012: 2
• 2013: 3
• 2014: 8
• 2015: 3

Eight batted passes in one season (2014) is exceptional. Lowry also picked off a pass he batted in the air this year against Duke. He is also thought of as a very coachable player, so, you know, #culture. He could be a late-round target.

Check out our grocery shopping page here, or any of the individual grocery shopping posts below.

 September 5

  1. Derrick Henry, RB, Alabama
  2. A'Shawn Robinson, DL, Alabama
  3. Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State
  4. Dadi Nicolas, Edge rusher, Virginia Tech
  5. Kendall Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech

• September 12

  1. Tyler Johnstone, OT, Oregon
  2. DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon
  3. Connor Cook, QB, Michigan State
  4. Shilique Calhoun, Edge rusher, Michigan State
  5. Tre'Davious White, CB, LSU

• September 19

  1. Ronnie Stanley, OT, Notre Dame
  2. Leonard Floyd, OLB, Georgia
  3. Rashard Higgins, WR, Colorado State
  4. Jared Goff, QB, California
  5. O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama

• September 26

  1. Wayne Lyons, CB/S, Michigan
  2. Hunter Henry, TE, Arkansas
  3. Germain Ifedi, OT, Texas A&M
  4. Christian Westerman, OG, Arizona State
  5. Cody Kessler, QB, USC

October 3

  1. Jordan Jenkins, Edge rusher, Georgia
  2. Jason Spriggs, OT, Indiana
  3. Cody Whitehair, OT/OG, Kansas State
  4. Emmanuel Ogbah, Edge rusher, Oklahoma State
  5. KeiVarae Russell, CB, Notre Dame

Follow Jimmy on Twitter: @JimmyKempski