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December 02, 2017

Grocery shopping: Five college players to watch who could interest the Eagles in the 2018 NFL Draft

As long as you're taking in some college football action this Saturday afternoon/evening, here are some players who could make some sense for the Philadelphia Eagles in the 2018 NFL Draft.

Derrick Nnadi, DE, Florida State (6'1, 312): Louisiana Monroe at Florida State, 12:00 p.m.

Nnadi is a very strong defensive tackle who is stout against the run, and a penetrating force with pass rush moves against the pass. I'll stress, again, that he's strong:

In 2016, Nnadi had 49 tackles (10.5 for loss) and 6 sacks. In 2017, he had 48 tackles (9 for loss) and 3.5 sacks.

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If there's a concern about Nnadi, it's his short stature, at 6'1, 312, though the major success of the Rams' Aaron Donald may have alleviated some of those concerns for pro scouts. 

Braden Smith, OG/OT, Auburn (6'6, 303): (6) Georgia at (2) Auburn, 4:00 p.m.

You don't often think of 6'6, 303-pound players as guards, much less good run-blocking guards, but, well, watch this guy move defensive linemen off the line of scrimmage, often putting them on the ground. Here's Smith's game this season against LSU:

Smith also has experience at tackle. The Eagles have more of a need at tackle than guard, but you can never really have enough good players to protect your franchise quarterback. 

Jaleel Scott, WR, New Mexico State (6'6, 215): South Alabama at New Mexico State, 4:30 p.m.

Scott is a huge target with a wide catch radius at 6'6 who has shown enough ability as a receiver to go along with his size and athleticism to be thought of as a legit pro prospect. On the season, Scott has 64 catches for 908 yards and 8 TDs. Here's his game against LSU earlier this season. Check out the incredible catch at the 0:12 mark:

Scott has come out of nowhere, as he had just 23 catches for 283 yards and 5 TDs in his only other season for New Mexico State, but he is a high-upside developmental receiver who could be available in the late rounds.

Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson (6'4, 310): (7) Miami vs. (1) Clemson, 8:00 p.m.

In 2016, Wilkins had 48 tackles (13 for loss) and 3.5 sacks. In 2017, he has 45 tackles (7.5 for loss) and 4.5 sacks. He is a versatile defensive lineman, who has played on the edge as well as the interior for Clemson. He also plays fullback for the Tigers on occasion, and has even run a fake punt:

Wilkins is a high energy, 312-pound athlete that would fit in perfectly along the Eagles' defensive line.

T.J. Edwards, LB, Wisconsin (6'1, 244): (8) Ohio State vs. (4) Wisconsin, 8:00 p.m.

Edwards led the Badgers in tackles as a freshman and sophomore (he's second in tackles as a junior in 2017). More impressively, over the last two seasons, Edwards has seven interceptions, and they are of the impressive variety:

With Jordan Hicks unable to stay healthy, the Eagles could use another playmaking linebacker to add to the defense. Edwards is a potential first rounder.

Previously profiled players

• August 26

  1. Michael Gallup, WR, Colorado State
  2. Adam Breneman, TE, UMass
  3. Quinton Flowers, QB, South Florida
  4. Quenton Meeks, CB, Stanford
  5. Justin Reid, S, Stanford

• August 31

  1. Richard Lagow, QB, Indiana
  2. Simmie Cobbs Jr., WR, Indiana
  3. Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State
  4. Azeem Victor, LB, Washington
  5. Vita Vea, DT, Washington

• September 2

  1. Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State
  2. Mike McGlinchey, OT, Notre Dame
  3. Antonio Callaway, WR, Florida
  4. Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama
  5. Tarvaris McFadden, CB, Florida State

• September 9

  1. Jarrett Stidham, QB, Auburn
  2. Tyrone Crowder, OG, Clemson
  3. Jordan Thomas, CB, Oklahoma
  4. Mark Andrews, TE, Oklahoma
  5. Tyquan Lewis, DE, Ohio State

• September 16

  1. James Washington, WR, Oklahoma State
  2. Courtland Sutton, WR, SMU
  3. Deon Cain, WR, Clemson
  4. Jaire Alexander, CB, Lousiville
  5. Ronald Jones II, RB, USC

• September 23

  1. Bradley Chubb, DE, NC State
  2. Harold Landry, DE, Boston College
  3. Mitch Hyatt, OT, Clemson
  4. Martinas Rankin, OT, Mississippi State
  5. Akrum Wadley, RB, Iowa

• September 30

  1. Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia
  2. Sony Michel, RB, Georgia
  3. Jamar Summers, CB, UConn
  4. Adonis Alexander, CB, Virginia Tech
  5. Dante Pettis, WR, Washington

• October 7

  1. Duke Ejiofor, DE, Wake Forest
  2. Brian O'Neill, OT, Pittsburgh
  3. Christian Kirk, WR, Texas A&M
  4. Royce Freeman, RB, Oregon
  5. Bryce Love, RB, Stanford

• October 14

  1. Derrius Guice, RB, LSU
  2. Troy Fumagalli, TE, Wisconsin
  3. Frank Ragnow, C, Arkansas
  4. Lowell Lotulelei, DT, Utah
  5. Rashaad Penny, RB, San Diego State

• October 21

  1. Trey Marshall, S, Florida State
  2. Damien Harris, RB, Alabama
  3. Mike Gesicki, TE, Penn State 
  4. Cameron Smith, LB, USC
  5. Quenton Nelson, OG, Notre Dame

• October 28

  1. M.J. Stewart, CB, North Carolina
  2. Trey Adams, OT, Washington
  3. Adarius Pickett, S, UCLA
  4. Allen Lazard, WR, Iowa State
  5. Kalen Ballage, RB, Arizona State

• November 4

  1. Brian Allen, OG, Michigan State
  2. Dallas Goedert, TE, South Dakota State
  3. Cedrick Wilson, WR, Boise State
  4. Tim Settle, DT, Virginia Tech
  5. Bo Scarbrough, RB, Alabama

• November 11

  1. Jaylen Samuels, RB/FB/TE/WR, NC State
  2. Shaquem Griffin, LB, UCF
  3. Marcell Ateman, WR, Oklahoma State
  4. Rashaan Evans, LB, Alabama
  5. Josh Adams, RB, Notre Dame

• November 18

  1. Anthony Miller, WR, Memphis
  2. Jordan Whitehead, S, Pittsburgh
  3. Joshua Jackson, CB, Iowa
  4. Ito Smith, RB, Southern Mississippi
  5. Tyrell Crosby, OT, Oregon

November 25

  1. Chukwuma Okorafor, OT, Western Michigan
  2. Ian Thomas, TE, Indiana
  3. Kerryon Johnson, RB, Auburn
  4. Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson
  5. Marcus Davenport, DE, UT San Antonio

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