There was no sense moving out of the fourth spot with
Johnson, the tremendously athletic offensive tackle from Oklahoma who played quarterback in high school and who has the explosiveness to have played defensive end with the Sooners, is now an Eagle. And while we all want to project Johnson as an instant starter at right tackle -- he is likely to have a chance to win that job -- head coach Chip Kelly correctly said at his post-pick press conference that Johnson needs to earn his playing time.
Johnson was a no-brainer pick, really. How in the world could the Eagles pass up a player with so much athletic ability and, in the words of Kelly, has "more upside" than any of the offensive tackles in this draft?
This wasn't a sexy draft pick, and in the end it wasn't one that seemed anything other than right. It was logical, it was a good fit and Johnson gives the Eagles another big, strong and athletic offensive lineman for Kelly's offense.
What is fair to expect from the offensive line? If you've read this space the last several months, you know that the offensive line was the first priority here. Having a good offensive line is one thing, having a very good group is even better and having a great offensive line is something that can turn this offense into something special. And the Eagles have a chance to be great along the line of scrimmage with the addition of Johnson.
It isn't all about Johnson alone. The return to good health by left tackle
Add in some young players who have a lot to prove in former first-round draft pick
Stoutland is one of the most respected offensive line coaches in the game, and what he accomplished at Alabama as he built a dynasty at the line of scrimmage is admirable. He has some nice pieces with which to work as he digs in here, and the Eagles are going to be much improved up front.
That means a lot for quarterbacks
That's what this draft pick means. The Eagles didn't add a playmaker, per se, but they added a player who is going to make life so much easier for
What happens in rounds two and three? The Eagles could still add to the offense -- tight end, anyone? -- or they could get back to addressing the defense with some help for the front seven. Look at the defensive line and think about who is starting there. Is, for example,
The Eagles have eight more draft picks and they have some positions to address. With the third pick in the second round, the Eagles can go in any number of directions, and they met late into the night on Thursday discussing plans for Friday.
Round 1 was a success. The Eagles got their guy, someone who will help this offense play the way Chip Kelly wants. Lane Johnson was the right pick at the right spot in Round 1, and now we wait for the second day of the draft and the plans the Eagles will make.