After a lengthy break of an entire morning and afternoon that the Eagles used to their advantage to evaluate their draft board and to field hundreds of phone calls, the team now goes into business navigating through rounds two and three of this draft. This is a very important time in the draft. Defensive end Brandon Graham is in, having made it to the NovaCare Complex on his whirlwind tour of his new home. What do the Eagles do next?
With the fifth pick in the second round, No. 37 overall, the Eagles could do just about anything. There is going to be some interest in that pick -- who needs to jump ahead of Cleveland's pick in the second round? -- and the Eagles might be able to move out of 37 deeper into the second round, and also pick up a third-round selection.
The Eagles can also stay put and select from a wide group of players that aren't necessarily cornerbacks or safeties. I understand that those are the two positions Eagles fans are craving right now. You like Graham, and you want him to succeed and you recognize the need for another outstanding end, but what about the back seven?
I'm sure the Eagles aren't going to force it. They genuinely believe that Ellis Hobbs is a starting-caliber cornerback to go along with Asante Samuel. Maybe they are going to give Macho Harris a shot at cornerback. Maybe they think Marlin Jackson really is going to be healthy enough to play safety this season, and that Quintin Demps has shown enough in the off-season that the coaches feel he is on the right path.
I'm not -- and don't go and have a coronary here -- convinced the Eagles are going to attack the secondary in this second round. I don't have a feel, not a bit. All of those "best remaining player" lists compiled by the "draft experts" have offensive tackles and defensive linemen and a safety or two. Would the Eagles wait until tomorrow to add to the back seven of this defense?
Sure, they could. The dumb thing would be to reach in the second round. These are valuable selections here. There is major talent on the board. The draft has barely started for an Eagles team that still has seven picks remaining and needs dotting the roster.
What are those needs? I think the Eagles have a darn good roster, young and talented, but there is no reason why the Eagles would bypass just about any position to challenge. What if the Eagles wanted a running back in this second round? Would that bother you in the least? An offensive lineman? A defensive tackle? Even, gulp, another defensive end?
The Eagles must stay true to their draft board. They went up and drafted Graham on Thursday and now move on to phase two of this three-day draft extravaganza. You make or break the draft from this point on. Let's see what the Eagles do.
But I don't have a feel. I'm telling you that right now. The second round starts very shortly and I ... just ... don't ... know. I believe the Eagles are disciplined enough to not force things. I believe they have options to move out of 37. I believe almost anything can go in this second round.
That's why, in many ways, this day is more interesting than Round 1. The Eagles have a chance to add two outstanding talents to this roster. How do they go about doing so and maybe helping themselves even more along the way?