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September 01, 2018

Grocery shopping: Five college players to watch who could interest the Eagles in the 2019 NFL Draft

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090118RaekwonDavis Derick E. Hingle/USA TODAY Sports

Alabama DT Raekwon Davis is a monster.

The college football season began last Saturday, with some smaller school games on TV, and a handful of games scattered throughout the week. This Saturday will begin the full college football slate of games. 

As long as you're taking in some of the action today as the Philadelphia Eagles make their final cuts, here are some players who could make sense for the Birds in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Nick Bosa, DE, OSU (6'4, 263): Oregon State at (5) Ohio State, 12:00 p.m.

We'll profile Bosa because, what the hell why not, but some are projecting him as a potential No. 1 overall pick. I'm not sure he's that special, but he is obviously an outstanding player at a premium position who is going to be long gone by the time the Eagles are picking in the first round. A highlight reel:


As we noted back in May, the Eagles' likely biggest draft need in 2019 will be the defensive line, and the 2019 NFL Draft may wind up being one of the most loaded defensive line drafts ever.

We're going to cover all the major defensive line names, and while Bosa is likely not a realistic option, the potential overabundance of great defensive line prospects is almost certainly going to cause players to be pushed further down the draft order than they would otherwise. We may as may know them all.

Devin Singletary, RB, Florida Atlantic (5'9, 200): Florida Atlantic at (7) Oklahoma, 12:00 p.m.

In two seasons at FAU, Singletary has run for 44 TDs (32 in 2017!) and almost 3000 yards. He closed the 2017 season by rattling off 12 straight 100+ yard games.

 Devin SingletaryRush Yards YPC TD 
 2016152 1021 6.7 12 
 2017301 1920 6.4 32 


Obviously, those numbers are nuts. Of course, the Eagles got burned by a highly productive, undersized running back recently when they drafted Donnel Pumphrey in the fourth round of the 2017 NFL Draft. However, Singletary at least has workable size, if his listed weight at 200 pounds is accurate.

Here's a highlight reel:


As you can see in the video, while not the biggest guy, Singletary is effective using little jump cuts and start-and-stop moves to pick his way through holes between the tackles. 

The Eagles only have one running back who is a lock to be on the 2019 roster in Corey Clement. They can use more weapons in the backfield.

David Sills V, WR, West Virginia (6'4, 210): Tennessee at (17) West Virginia, 3:30 p.m.

Like Singletary above, Sills is a touchdown machine, as he had 18 of them in 2017. As you can see in the below video, he's good in the red zone. #Analysis.


Sills is thought of as a quiet guy off the field, and the "baddest dude" on it. It will be interesting to see if he can show that he wasn't just a one-year wonder in 2017.

Damien Harris, RB, Alabama (5'11, 215): Louisville at (1) Alabama, 8:00 p.m.

Harris was perhaps the lesser known of Bama's backs the last two seasons, but he outproduced Bo Scarbrough in 2016, needing only 145 carries to gain 1040 yards (7.2 YPC), though Scarbrough got the goal line chances, as Harris scored just 2 TDs.

In 2017, Harris again tore it up on a modest number of carries. He had 135 carries (less than 10 per game) for 1000 yards and 11 TDs. That would be 7.4 yards-per-carry. A highlight reel:


As you can see in the video above, Harris is a no-nonsense, one-cut, north-south runner who doesn't possess great long speed but has very good acceleration and gets up to top speed quickly. He is also a coordinated runner with good balance. In that sense, he reminds me a little of Kareem Hunt, but perhaps without the same level of receiving ability.

Raekwon Davis, DT, Alabama (6'7, 316): Louisville at (1) Alabama, 8:00 p.m.

Just watch how this guy moves for a 6'7 defensive tackle.


Monster.

In 2017, Davis had 69 tackles (10 for loss), 8.5 sacks, and a pick. He is a size-athleticism freak of nature who can be special if he continues to develop. Barring some kind of currently unknown character or injury concerns, he is a slam dunk first round pick.

Even in a stacked defensive line draft, I can't imagine Davis being available anywhere near where the Eagles will be picking, but in the event he somehow slides, Davis is the type of brute powerhouse with agility who can be a penetrating force along the Eagles' defensive line.


MORE: What they're saying about the Eagles: Predictions for the final 53-man roster are in | Smart Money with The Philly Godfather: Eagles’ season opener and 2018 win total | Final Eagles 53-man roster projection


Previously profiled players

August 25

  1. Carl Granderson, DE, Wyoming
  2. Justice Hill, RB, Oklahoma State
  3. Nate Herbig, OG, Stanford
  4. T.J. Edwards, LB, Wisconsin
  5. David Edwards, OT, Wisconsin


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