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June 14, 2017

Who did the Eagles' rookies pattern their games after?

Each year, we ask all the Philadelphia Eagles' rookie draft picks what NFL players they patterned their games after or emulated in some way during their journey to the pros.

Here's who this year's crop looked up to:

Derek Barnett

"I was Titans fan growing up, because I was from there, so Jevon Kearse. Right now, to this day, I watch guys like Michael Bennett and Michael Strahan. There are a lot great pass rushers out there, even on this team, like Brandon Graham. So there are a lot of guys that I look up to, to this day, trying to add to my craft, my technique.

"Kearse was a freak. He had a lot of power, but he could bend as well. Right now I can dip well, but I’m trying to add power to my game."

Sidney Jones

Jones said that he’s not talking to the media on the Eagles’ orders until he starts playing. However, he was asked this same question at the NFL Combine in February.

“I don’t try to emulate any corner like that. I obviously watch film on the people who do well and see how they do things and their style of play and how they play football. But I don’t try to emulate myself after anybody. I model myself after my own game.”

Jones did later mention that he did watch a handful of corners on film.

“I watch Marcus Peters, Richard Sherman, Patrick Peterson and Tyrann Mathieu.”

Rasul Douglas

"I watched a lot of good NFL corners when I was younger. Darrelle Revis, Charles Woodson, Aqib Talib, corners like that. I watched them when I was growing up. They were just great thinkers. They knew the game well. You could see it. They’ll be jumping the route before it even happens. You know they watch a lot of film."

Mack Hollins

"Obviously, you look at all the greats like Cris Carter, Jerry Rice, Michael Irvin. You try to take a little bit from each of them but build your own game. You have to make it your own."

Donnel Pumphrey

"My whole life, I've patterned it after guys like Reggie Bush, LaDainian Tomlinson. Growing up watching LaDainian Tomlinson in San Diego, he's just been my guy, him and Darren Sproles. And now really just Darren Sproles. I'm looking at him and every rep he's getting. 

"That's pretty much the role that I'm going to try to fill when his time is done and even when he's not in the game." 

Shelton Gibson

"When I was younger, I was looking at real fast players like DeSean Jackson and *Steve Smith. And then when I got to college, I watched (former West Virginia standouts) Tavon Auston and Stedman Bailey."

Nate Gerry

"I saw myself as a Harrison Smith kind of player. And being from South Dakota, I looked up to players like Chad Greenway. With Harrison, being able to play the pass and the run, I want to be able to do both of those. He’s pretty aggressive and makes plays on the ball in the air. That’s what I tried to do in college."

Elijah Qualls

"I can't say that for the defensive line. I never played D-line until I got to college. Once I got to college, obviously there was Gerald McCoy and Aaron Donald, people like that. Growing up, I was a running back, so I don't have as much time playing defensive line as a lot of other people do, so I'm trying to catch up to them."

*Gibson meant the good Steve Smith, presumably.

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