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April 11, 2021

Mailbag: Could the Eagles trade up from Round 2 into Round 1?

Eagles NFL

In our Eagles chat on Thursday, there were a lot of questions that we could not get to in time or other questions we did answer but could use more color. And so, let's do a mailbag post to answer some of the overflow, as well as some commonly asked questions on Twitter and via email.

Question from Kephas: What are the odds the Eagles trade up into Round 1? It occurred to me that the suspense of Thursday night's first round is over much sooner with an earlier pick (as opposed to usually waiting until late teens/early 20s). Do we watch until pick 12 and then check back in on Friday night?

First, when it comes to moving around in the draft, the Eagles do it as much as anyone. Add in that they have 11 picks in this draft, and sure, they're candidates for pretty much anything when it comes to trades, mid-draft.

More importantly, however, is whether it makes sense for teams drafting in the 20's or 30's to move out of the first round. Typically, teams that do that are low on draft picks and would be looking to stock their shelves with more picks. Here are the teams drafting in the 20's and 30's, and how many picks each team has:

 PickTeam Number of draft picks 
 20Bears 8 (none in the 4th) 
 21Colts 6 (none in the 3rd) 
 23Jets 10 
 25Jaguars 10 
 29Packers 10 
 30Bills 7 (none in the 4th) 

The Bills and Ravens make some sense. Using the draft value chart, the Eagles' second pick in the third round (pick No. 84) should be able to get them up to either 27 or 30, if either of those teams wanted to move out. The Bills would probably also have to give back a later-round pick.

And then if the Eagles wanted to get a little bolder, they'd also have the ammo to move up to 20 or 21 with the Bears or Colts. That would likely cost them their first pick in the third round (pick No. 70), plus maybe their fourth- or fifth-round picks. I think they'd have to really love a player to try to get up that high.

Follow-up (sort of) from Kephas: When is the last time the draft value chart was updated? If not, should it be?

Yep, Rich Hill of Pats Pulpit created one a few years back that's logical. I have no idea if teams around the league use it.

Question from Deathorglory: What's the deal with Zach Ertz? He's not really going to be on the team, is he?

My understanding for months now is that Ertz is as good as gone. I haven't heard anything in regard to changes on that front, so my assumption is that he remains as good as gone.

One possibility is that the Eagles could be waiting until June 1 to move on from Ertz. If they cut or traded him now, he would count for $7,769,500 in dead money against the cap, with $4,952,000 in savings. Since the Eagles already used both of their two allotted June 1 designations on Alshon Jeffery and Malik Jackson, they would have to actually wait until June 1 to get the benefit of a June 1 release/trade with a third player. If they cut or traded Ertz after June 1, the dead money hit in 2021 would be $4,221,500, with $3,548,000 in dead money kicked into 2022. They would have an immediate savings of $8,500,000 instead of $4,952,000.

Tl;dr on that last paragraph: They'd have an extra $3.5 million or so to work with this offseason.

That extra $3.5 million on its own would be right around what the Eagles would need to sign all their rookie draft picks. If all they received were crappy offers from other teams around the league for Ertz (which would make sense), the Eagles are better off just waiting to move on from him until after June 1.

Question from Nate: If the Eagles go defense in Round 1, how would you rank the WR's after Ja'Marr Chase, DeVonta Smith, and Jaylen Waddle for the 2nd round (or a trade up into the back end of Round 1)?

At some point I'll rank all the receivers in this draft, since the Eagles are likely to take at least one. In looking at who might be available in Round 2, or who you might have to trade up into Round 1 for, I think that's where you have guys like LSU's Terrace Marshall, Minnesota's Rashod Bateman, Florida's Kadarius Toney, Purdue's Rondale Moore, and Ole Miss' Elijah Moore.

The Eagles have reportedly been talking "a lot" with Marshall, which I think makes sense. When you look at the types of receivers that Marshall, Bateman, Toney, and the Moores are, Marshall has the most size, and would probably make the most sense from a needs perspective as an X receiver to pair with Jalen Reagor as the Z.

 PlayerHeight Weight 
 Terrace Marshall, LSU6'2 205 
 Rashod Bateman, Minnesota6'0 190 
 Kadarius Toney, Florida6'0 193 
 Randale Moore, Purdue5'7 181 
Elijah Moore, Ole Miss 5'9 178 

Personally, I like Bateman a little more than Marshall, but I can see why the Eagles are doing extensive homework on Marshall.

Question from Alex: If Kyle Pitts somehow ends up on the Cowboys, how scared should Eagles fans be on a scale of children's birthday party clown to Pennywise?

They'd surely have quite a collection of talent at the skill positions on offense. BUT... 

  1. Their defense stinks. 
  2. Their OL is aging.

If they landed Pitts, whether that be at 10 (almost no way he falls that far) or via trade up, there's zero doubt that Dallas would be hyped as Super Bowl contenders for the eleventy billionth straight season. So, I wouldn't sweat it to hard.

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