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May 02, 2016

The Eagles (GASP!) didn't draft any obvious immediate starters

Eagles NFL
050216IsaacSeumalo Rick Bowmer/AP

Isaac Seumalo, like the rest of the Eagles' draft picks, may be seated on the bench as a rookie, which is fine.

Among the criticisms of the Eagles' 2016 draft is that they may not have selected anyone who will start their rookie season. My rebuttal – who cares?

With the second-overall pick in the draft, the Eagles nabbed quarterback Carson Wentz, who the team thinks will be the long-term answer at quarterback. It is widely assumed that Wentz will not be thrown to the wolves as a rookie, allowing him to adjust to the speed of the game at the pro level and be ready by 2017.

In the third round, they selected versatile center Isaac Seumalo, a rare lineman who can play all five spots along the offensive line. Four of the starting offensive line spots are spoken for:

 Jason PetersJason Kelce Brandon Brooks Lane Johnson 

The LG spot is up for grabs with Allen Barbre and Stefen Wisniewski being the most logical starters there. Seumalo could certainly beat them out in camp, but for now, we'll project him as a versatile bench guy.

Beyond Wentz and Seumalo, it is highly unlikely any of the Eagles' other draft picks will win starting jobs.

But again, who cares? In case you forgot, the Eagles were highly active in free agency, signing a number of definite and potential starters.

Definite starters

Brandon Brooks, RG: Brooks will be the Eagles' RG, and will be a significant upgrade over the hodgepodge of players who occupied that spot a year ago.

Rodney McLeod, S: McLeod will start opposite Malcolm Jenkins, where he should be an upgrade over Walter Thurmond, who was probably best suited as a slot corner.

Nigel Bradham, LB: Bradham will start at SAM for the Eagles along with Jordan Hicks and Mychal Kendricks. Hicks will replace the declining DeMeco Ryans, and clearly the Eagles didn't feel that Kiko Alonso was the answer at SAM.

Potential starters

Stefen Wisniewski, LG: It's hard to imagine Wisniewski not outplaying Barbre, who was bad in 2015.

Chase Daniel, QB: If Sam Bradford continues to pout, Daniel could very well be the opening day starter. That, of course, is not an ideal situation, and certainly not how the Eagles drew it up, but it's a realistic possibility.

Rueben Randle, WR: In the Chip Kelly days, the Eagles primarily operated out of three wide receiver sets. To be determined what Doug Pederson will prefer. If indeed we see a lot of three-wide sets, Randle could very well win the No. 3 job over Josh Huff behind Jordan Matthews and Nelson Agholor. At a minimum, Randle is a significant upgrade over Riley Cooper and Miles Austin, who will probably both be out of the league.

Would it be a lot cooler if the Eagles had rookies who will start right away? Sure. But the reality is that if you're expecting a rookie to come in and be your ticket to the Super Bowl... as a rookie... then you were never really a contender in the first place, which the Eagles aren't.

Their rookies will play when they're ready. In the meantime, here's your reminder that they may have found as many as six new starters (ideally five) via free agency.

Follow Jimmy on Twitter: @JimmyKempski