The Eagles biggest need heading into the draft is at cornerback. Ellis Hobbs is penciled in as the starter on the right side, but the team will want someone to come in and challenge him for that job. While cornerback is the biggest need, that doesn't mean the first pick will be spent to address that position. There are many personnel guys that will tell you to always go after a pass-rusher first and foremost. That is a position that can help out the cornerbacks by getting pressure on the passer.
The Eagles have a pair of defensive ends already in place. Trent Cole is our best defensive player and a real force off the edge. Darryl Tapp is new to the team, but will start on the left side. The Eagles hope he'll turn into a very good player. A lot of people in league circles feel that he's an ideal fit for the Eagles and will in fact become a very good left end.
While we don't need a starting defensive end you can never have enough pass rushers. It will not bother me in the least if the Eagles use the 24th pick on a defensive end. That is a position where you rotate players. With Chris Clemons and Darren Howard gone there is a need for some depth at end. We certainly don't have to use an early pick for depth. There is a possibility that the highest-rated player will be a defensive end. If so, you don't want to pass on him.
The cornerback class is deep and talented, but there aren't a lot of first-round stars. If Joe Haden and Kyle Wilson are both gone, we may be smart to wait for the second round (either the 37th pick or the 55th pick) to go for a cornerback. There should be talented, starting-caliber players at both spots.
Don't forget to check out my look at the game within a game that takes place leading up to the NFL Draft.
-- Posted by Tommy Lawlor, 1:00 p.m., April 13