November 16, 2019
As long as you're taking in some college football action this Saturday, here are some players who could make sense for the Philadelphia Eagles in the 2020 NFL Draft.
As a sophomore in 2018, Epenesa had 10.5 sacks and four FF. As such, in his junior campaign, he has received more attention this year, and his numbers are down a bit. Overall, through 33 collegiate games, Epenesa has 19.5 sacks, six FF, and a six batted passes.
Epenesa is a long, 6-foot-6, 280-pound powerhouse who wins with bull rushes and hand fighting. He is very likely not going to wow anyone with his athletic measurables at the Combine, but you can still see that he has some bend and explosion in his game. A highlight reel:
Epenesa is probably a first-round prospect. The Eagles have begun building a young stable of defensive ends that they are trying to develop in players like Josh Sweat and Shareef Miller. Their interest in taking another defensive end early in the draft will depend on how they believe that is going.
Watching Penn State's loss to Minnesota last week, my biggest takeaway from that game was how old I felt learning that Antoine Winfield has a kid potentially entering the draft next offseason. Ugh.
I loved the older Antoine Winfield as a player when he was still in the league. He was an undersized corner, but tough as hell, and a playmaker. Remember this from the Joe Webb Tuesday Night Football game?
Anyway, the younger Winfield, who plays safety, is a playmaker too, as he has seven INTs this season, second in the nation. Two of those were last week against Penn State. Here's the first one:
Antoine Winfield Jr. is a rangy safety that excels in preparation, sound tackling, and ball skills. Here’s his sixth interception of the season chasing the post and high-pointing the football like a WR. 5-10, 205 lbs. pic.twitter.com/PhDxL81KYK— Travis Wingfield (@WingfieldNFL) November 9, 2019
Aaaaand the second one:
Antoine Winfield intercepts Sean Clifford for the second time deep in Minnesota territory https://t.co/uxjs7eW7Jt— Kevin McGuire (@KevinOnCFB) November 9, 2019
He'd be a great fit in the Rodney McLeod role in the Eagles' defense.
Another player who impressed me watching PSU-Minnesota was WR Tyler Johnson, who doesn't have blazing speed, but looks like a savvy route runner who can actually, you know, make plays for his quarterback by making difficult catches. Despite that lack of track speed, it should be noted that Johnson does have a career YPC average of 15.4.
His career numbers:
A highlight reel:
With 403 more receiving yards this season, Johnson will pass Eric Decker as Minnesota's all-time receiving yards leader. I think that somewhere around the Nick Foles comp pick would be appropriate value.
Adebo has excellent ball skills as he has 27 pass breakups and eight INTs the last two years for Stanford. You can see those ball skills here:
The downside is that Adebo can occasionally be too aware/overaggressive and bite on double moves.
The Eagles have an obvious need at cornerback with Sidney Jones not having panned out and several other corners on the roster headed toward free agency, and Abedo could be an intriguing option if he makes it to Round 2.
Aiyuk is an off-the-radar prospect (I think?) who should be getting more attention as draft season begins to heat up. He is a junior college transfer in his senior year who is in his second season at Arizona State. His numbers:
Aiyuk has some shake once he gets the ball in his hands, and provides added value as a kick/punt returner. A highlight reel:
He probably fits best in the Eagles' offense in a Nelson Agholor-type role.
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