After the Eagles made their final selection of the 2012 NFL Draft, head coach Andy Reid met the Philadelphia media to dish on the five newest Eagles, who all became members of the team on the Draft's third day. The team certainly seemed to hold true to their espoused "Best Player Available" philosophy throughout this year's draft, with players like Vinny Curry, Brandon Boykin, Marvin McNutt and Brandon Washington standing out as "sliding" farther than anticipated.
But when asked which addition was most surprising, considering the Eagles did not think they would have a chance to add said player, Reid have a surprising answer.
"Probably the first one," said Reid of Mississippi State defensive tackle Fletcher Cox. "Coming into the draft, I just thought he was a six or seven guy. I think everybody felt that way. And I talked to enough people in the league, they felt that way. Then it just started snowballing and we were lucky enough to be able to move up and go get him.
As for his thoughts on some of the newest Eagles, here are Reid's thoughts on the five players added on Saturday.
On fourth-round pick, Georgia CB Brandon Boykin: "Brandon is really a dual-role position player in that he can play corner and he can play also the inside/nickel position. He's done those both at a high level of competition at the college level. Add to that he was a returner. He was one of the best dual returners in college football this year, so we welcome that skill onto our football team. I think sometimes that is a skill that gets neglected in this is the return part of it.
"He's going to get a chance to (be our kick returner). We're going to give him a chance to do that. (Special teams coordinator) Bobby (April) had him as his top combo guy, and he's seen a couple, right? He's seen a lot of guys come through."
On fifth-round pick, Purdue OT Dennis Kelly: "He's in the size range of the Tra's (Thomas) and the (Jon) Runyan's, like (T) King Dunlap. He was a four-year starter at Purdue and a team captain and all that stuff so he was highly intelligent. We brought him in and he didn't go to the combine. We worked him out and had a chance to visit with him. I really liked what we not only saw on tape but him as a person. Like I said, when he walks in the room, he's one of those where the light dims down a little bit because he's a big human being.
On sixth-round pick, Iowa WR Marvin McNutt: "We have a little bit of an inside source at Iowa with (defensive coordinator) Juan Castillo's son playing one of the corners there. What you'll see with Marvin is he is a big, physical receiver with great hands, a good character kid, and is very strong with the ball. When you watch him, he is a very smooth athlete who is big. I think when he timed, it was like, 'Whoa, he looked even faster there than he did in the game.' You talk about making some unbelievable catches, you see that with this kid. He's good with the yards after the catch and he's very productive there. He's a good person.
On sixth-round pick, Miami (FL) OG Brandon Washington: "Brandon probably fell a little bit further than we anticipated. Brandon had been a standout offensive guard the season before this one, and then they moved him out to left tackle. His production was okay at left tackle. As a guard, he really did a fine job. One thing is that the transition from guard to tackle is pretty tough. It wasn't because of being passive, it was because of being too aggressive at the tackle position where he overset the rush defensive ends and had a tendency to get beat inside a little bit there. At guard, he was really an unbelievable player and he played extremely well there. We're obviously going to keep him at guard, that makes sense. We'll start him back at the guard position and in an emergency we can move him back outside. He's a very, very good athlete and you'll see he's chipper on his feet, has very good length to his arms, and he's a good bender and has good hips.
"He was by far the top guy on the board. I mean, we had just picked an offensive lineman, it's not like the cupboards are bare there. But he was too good to pass up at that particular spot ... He's very athletic. You'll see, he gets out and runs."
On seventh-round pick, Kansas St. RB Bryce Brown: "I mentioned this to Bryce and (general manager) Howie (Roseman) and I talked a lot about this kid and we spent a lot of time evaluating him. He's had kind of a wild ride here through college football since being the number one running back coming out of high school into college. He went to Tennessee and actually played as a freshman and saw time, legitimate time, and had big plays for them. You're talking about a kid who is an inch under six foot and is 220 pounds who runs a 4.4 forty. You're talking tremendous, tremendous skill here. He catches the ball effortlessly and is a smooth, smooth runner. He has all the talent in the world but it's just a matter of tying things down here. He went to Tennessee, and with the coaching change, instead of going to SC, he went to Kansas State where his brother played. He goes to Kansas State and gets a high ankle sprain and really doesn't play right away and really didn't get much of anything out of that experience there. But he went back to family, and his father was a part of that. After the coaching change, he wanted to get both sons playing together. No excuses here, but I'm just giving you the story, right? What we saw there was talent. We brought him in, and (running backs coach) Ted Williams is a phenomenal evaluator of running backs, I mean you guys know his track record with running backs and he worked with him as a player. Our scouts felt comfortable with him as did (offensive coordinator) Marty (Mornhinweg). When his name was there at the end as opposed to going into free agency with this highly skilled player where you're going to be in a bidding war, we decided to use that draft pick there, knowing there is a potential upside to him, sort of what we did with King Dunlap. You guys know that worked our very well for us, so it's a similar type of situation to King."
On the state of the running back position: "We'll see how it goes. We're good with young guys and we'll see how that works out. With Dion (Lewis), I would have liked to have gotten him a little more time last year as we went on. I didn't end up doing that and I probably overplayed (LeSean) McCoy a little bit, even though he doesn't want to hear that. As he continues to get older and have the number of reps under his belt that he does, you'll want to back off the number of reps that he does."
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