Philadelphia Eagles News

Head Coach Andy Reid

Opening remarks: "We had a busy day today. We took (DE) Brandon Graham, which I think we all know from yesterday in the first round. Brandon came into town and I think you all had an opportunity to meet him. Then today's activity, we had plenty of that, but we ended up drafting Nate Allen, a secondary player. When I say that, he's a safety, but I believe he also can play corner for you. We drafted him in the second round. His strengths are he has a great eye for the ball; ball hawk. He's a very, very good tackler.

"I think those are two important things when you are the last guy to the end zone. I feel very comfortable with him, he's very intelligent, he's got everything that we like here and we look forward to getting him in. Then Daniel (Te'o-Nesheim), and you can work on the last name, half of it is Samoan and the other half is Norwegian. We have another TO in the building; that's the important thing. This TO is a defensive end, he can also play defensive tackle, particularly on pass-rush situations although he did it both ways there. He was the career sack leader for the University of Washington. I believe he had 31 sacks. That's quite a statement in itself.

"He's very good against the run. I think you'll see between Graham, Tapp and now (Te'o-Nesheim), that you're going to see guys that have high motors, are very aggressive and similar to (former Eagles defensive end) Hugh (Douglas). Hugh's here today so I can give him a little (publicity). They have that type of motor where they're relentless football players, they're intelligent guys and I think our fans will appreciate the way they play the game. They're excited, they're all excited to be here and you'll see Nate, he'll be in tomorrow."

On moving down in the draft: "What you do, you sit and you evaluate the strengths of the draft by round. We felt like the latter part of the second round, I'm saying once you pass the first round, the latter part of the second round into the third and fourth rounds were the strengths of this draft. Obviously time will tell, but we put ourselves in a pretty good position if that's the case, if we're right and accurate there, for tomorrow's draft with all those fourth round picks, fifth round picks and sixths and a couple sevenths that we have. Then, we'll just see. Like I said, time will tell whether we're accurate there or not, but we try to be very aggressive. I thought (general manager) Howie Roseman did a phenomenal job again today and his ability to accumulate these picks. It's fun to watch how he goes about that."

On whether he had the chance to interview Te'o-Nesheim himself: "We actually did. We brought him in here and talked him. I love the way he plays and I love his motor and everything else. Yeah, I did have a chance. He's a very, very quiet guy. His coach explained it to me this way. Do you know that guy who plays safety for the Pittsburgh Steelers? (Troy) Polamalu. He said, now he coached both guys here, he says, 'This is what he is except as a defensive lineman. He's very quiet, very soft spoken. When he puts on his uniform, he's a different guy.' When you talk to him and then when you watch some of his highlights, I think you'll get an idea of what I'm saying here and what really his coach said."

On playing Nate Allen at free safety: "This is what we end up having here because Marlin kind of gets put out of the picture here, Marlin Jackson. What you have with him is another one of those type of a player that has played corner and has played safety and can do either for you. As he continues to recover and becomes healthier and works his way in there, it gives you a little flexibility in the secondary with the things that you can do. Right now he's a safety to answer your question. He's a safety right now, yes."

On whether he hoped a couple more cornerbacks were available at 37: "No, not necessarily. We were kind of good where we were. We're not done yet, so as we reconvene tomorrow, we'll see how things work out and who we add to this football team."

On how the draft has gone so far:"To be honest with you, it has been very accurate on how guys have come off the board. Listen, if I could have told you that we were going to end up with these three players, I would have told you I'd be a happy guy; I'm a happy guy right now. I look forward to getting them in here and playing. Now we're not done, it's kind of half done. We have to make sure that we finish this thing up right tomorrow."

On whether he considered shopping the 37th pick: "There was a little interest in it. Then you just wait that out and compare it to what you felt the value of Nate was. Obviously we felt the value was greater with him."

On whether he is concerned with the 37th pick and how it relates to Donovan McNabb: "No, to be honest with you, I haven't thought about it. Donovan moved on and then we took what we considered the best player at that spot. I wouldn't compare the two. It's tough to compare a safety to a quarterback."

On the cornerbacks still left in the draft: "There are a couple in there that we kind of like."

On the Eagles nine selections in rounds four through seven: "We'll see how it works. We've created a little bit of flexibility there now, so we'll see how we can work that and whether we move up with some of the picks or whether we move back in the next year, whatever it may be, we have a little bit of flexibility there."

On Nate Allen stopping the run versus stopping the pass: "He's a very sure tackler. When you watch highlights of him, you'll see some where he just destroys people and blows them up. One thing that I and you can appreciate this, the one thing I really value in him is that he's an accurate tackler. Sometimes you see these big hitters that miss and you don't see that with this kid. This kid is going to get you down on the ground and that's important. So, I would say he's strong in both areas, both in the run and the pass and he does have a knack for making plays when the balls in the air."

On Nate Allen versus Taylor Mays: "Well maybe the things that I'm mentioning here. Brian Dawkins wasn't the biggest guy and (Ravens Safety Ed) Reed isn't the biggest guy. (Steelers Safety Troy) Polamalu's not the biggest guy. There are a lot of safeties that aren't the biggest guy. I think the strength of Taylor and I really like him as a football player, don't get me wrong here, I think he can play all of the safety positions. I think he can be a phenomenal safety, strong safety, in-the-box area. I think he could even play linebacker because he's a tenacious player. But for what we do in the secondary and you know this, we have safeties that are interchangeable. So, it doesn't matter if you are a free safety or a strong safety, we ask both of them to do the same things and you have to be able to do a lot of different things with that. Be able to play deep, up-close and so on."

On the ability for players to contribute right away: "We've done that the last few years with some of the young guys and we're going to give them an opportunity to compete and see what they can do and if they work in there, the more power to them. Everybody we draft, we draft to be starters. It may not be the first year, second year, third year, but that's how we look at it. We try not to draft back-up players, but guys that have the opportunity to start somewhere in the future."

On the Eagles first three picks being defensive: "If I could tell you that we were going to get these three, that's what I can say because I can't sit here and tell you that I can predict how this whole thing's going to fall. We all saw some things happen that people didn't anticipate to happen the last three rounds here. But I would tell you that I'm excited about bringing these guys in here. They love playing football, they're high-energy, intelligent guys who enjoy playing the game and play it aggressively."

On the future of the safety position: "I don't know. I just know it's a good thing to get Marlin all the way back. It gives us flexibility at the corner spot and it gives us flexibility at the safety spot. I just think it's good. That's a good thing and we're not done yet, we're not done. I'm not saying that we're going to draft nine more safeties or corners, but we're not done putting this whole thing together, but I kind of like what I see."

On whether there has been interest from other teams for Michael Vick: "No."

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