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April 27, 2017

The top 10 options for the Eagles in round two of the 2017 NFL Draft

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With their first pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, the Philadelphia Eagles added some pass rush help, when they selected Derek Barnett. In round two, barring a trade up or trade back, the Birds will have the 11th pick In the second round, at 43rd overall.

Here are my top 10 options for the Eagles in round two:

• Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State: Way back in February, we explained why Cook will not be an option for the Eagles in the first round, as he comes with a wide assortment of red flags (character, fumbles, shoulder injuries, etc.). However, in the second round, he would be a steal.

• Joe Mixon, RB, Oklahoma: We've covered Mixon at length, and the belief here is that there is no better fit at running back in this draft than him. However, obviously, the video of Mixon punching a female is horrific, and any team drafting him will have to be comfortable with the idea that Mixon wants to be a better person. They'll also have to be ready for the public relations fallout.

• Alvin Kamara, RB, Tennessee: Over his career at Tennessee, Kamara was a complementary back with receiving ability (74-683-7 the last two seasons) out of the backfield, and also the team's main punt returner. Though small, he is a hard runner with good speed (although not elite breakaway speed), with good hands, and tackle-breaking ability. Oddly, Tennessee didn't use Kamara as much as they should have, as he only had 210 carries over the last two seasons.

• Zach Cunningham, LB, Vanderbilt: Cunningham is a highly athletic LB who arrived at Vanderbilt looking more like a wide receiver. He put on weight, and has become the clear-cut best player on the team. In 2015, Cunningham filled up the stat sheet, leading the Commodores with 103 tackles, 16.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, and 4 forced fumbles. In 2016, he had 125 tackles, 16.5 tackles for loss, and 2 forced fumbles. Cunningham is very good in coverage, and possesses the ability to run sideline to sideline and make plays.


RELATED: Under-the-radar FCS players the Eagles could target in mid to late rounds of NFL Draft


• Kevin King, CB, Washington: King has "Seahawks corner" measurements, at 6'3, 200. His college career path followed a similar pattern to that of former Eagles second-round pick Eric Rowe, in that King moved from safety to corner while at Washington. He has also played quite a bit in the slot. In 2016, King had 44 tackles, two interceptions, and an impressive 13 pass breakups. While Jim Schwartz was not a big Rowe fan, it was not because of his measurements.

• Quincy Wilson, CB, Florida: Wilson is a big corner at 6'1, 211, and is highly competitive, a trait that Jim Schwartz will love. Wilson is great in press at the line of scrimmage, and does a surprisingly effective job sticking with shiftier receivers.

• Cordrea Tankersley, CB, Clemson: The 2015 season was Tankersley's first as a starter at corner, and he was smart to stay at Clemson for his senior season to build on his impressive starting debut. In 2015, Tankersley led the Tigers with five interceptions and nine pass breakups. In 2016, he had four interceptions and 11 pass breakups. At 6'1, 199, Tankersley has good size and production.

• Chidobe Awuzie, CB, Colorado: Awuzie has good size and is a physical tackler who also contributed on special teams for the Buffaloes. He has an abnormal number of tackles from his corner spot over the last four seasons.

• Obi Melifonwu, S, UConn: Melifonwu is a size-athleticism freak of nature, much like former UConn CB/S safety Byron Jones was in 2015, when the Eagles passed on him to draft Nelson Agholor. In 2016, Melifonwu had 118 tackles, 4 INT, and 3 pass breakups.

• Budda Baker, S, Washington: Extremely competitive player, but small, at 5'10, 195. Baker could double as a slot corner in addition to playing centerfield.


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