The Players to Watch for the Eagles in the 2nd Round
By Dylan MacKinnon
After taking DeVonta Smith last night, and making Eagles fans very happy, how will Howie follow it up tonight? Add a corner? A Safety? Linebacker? Will he double down on WRs? Or could he reopen the QB Factory?
They have two picks tonight, 37 and 70. And they also have 7 picks on day 3 to play around with should they want to trade up. They will be 5th up in the 2nd round, provided they don’t move up or down. But who will be available there, and who will be the best fit? Lets take a look at who some of their options may be?
CB- Asante Samuel JR.- Florida State
The first thing anyone will notice about Asante is his name. He is the son of one of the best Eagles corners of this century, Asante Samuel SR. That alone is enough for many fans to want the Eagles to take him. But he is more than just a name.
Scouts will tell you he has great instincts, and is a force in man coverage, despite his small size. The drawback is that size though, which could limit the packages he can play in. He is also inexperienced in Zone coverage, so he may have to adjust to playing Zone. Last year Eagles ran the 5th most man coverage. But they changed D coordinators. Their new one, Jonathan Gannon, ran the most Zone. That doesn’t mean Samuel is not a fit. His smaller frame, great instincts, and elite ball skills could make him great in Zone, its just something he will have to learn on the job.
His dad has faith he can do that. In fact, in an interview with TMZ , he said his son will be even better than him.
“It’s definitely possible,” Samuel Sr. says. “He can go to the right team, right situation and get a little technique things knocked off, get it worked on a little bit — he definitely can rise up the ranks and have a great career.”
Asante Samuel Jr. allowed a 46.2 passer rating in coverage last season— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) April 29, 2021
Lowest in the 2021 Draft class🔒 pic.twitter.com/HDu0PdEcI2
CB Tyson Campbell- Georgia
The Eagles got a Bama WR, maybe next they will want someone who had to cover the Bama WRS. As a SEC corner, Campbell often matched up vs some of the best WRS in the nation. The problem is some of that tape is good, some not so much. He had a particularly rough game when matchup up vs Alabama, where he was often beat by Smith coming back to the ball. Then he was beat by John Metchie III getting behind him.
Campbell also lacks ball skills, getting only one interception in college, and only nine pass breakups. He has the speed to stick with guys, but lacks the situational awareness to attack the ball. This poor awareness also leads to him getting beaten by WRs making late moves.
Despite all that there is a lot to like too. His speed will allow him to stick with any WR. That speed also comes with a 6’2 frame. He is a strong tackler. He has lateral quickness, so when he does make the correct read he effortlessly follows WRs. Campbell also has the ability to blitz as well. He has all the physical attributes to be a top level corner. A good coach could turn a talented but flawed Campbell into a potential All-Pro.
LB-Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah– Notre Dame
Owusu-Koramoah is the reigning Dick Butkus award winner, given to the best Collegiate Linebacker every year. He is in good company there. Past winners include Roquan Smith, Devin White, CJ Mosley, Eric Kendricks, Von Miller, and Luke Kuechly.
The word I saw most people use to describe him is explosive. The term “fired out of a cannonball” was also used. He has both the straight line speed to chase a runner down, as well as the lateral quickness to stay in front of someone. He’s a bit small for a linebacker. But he makes up for that with power and sound tackling. He forced 5 fumbles in college.
He is a linebacker/safety hybrid, a combo that has become popular in the NFL. Just as capable of dropping back in coverage as he is stopping the rush. This is what his defensive coordinator, Clark lea, had to say about him.
“I think that he is the evolution of the game at the second level. I think he is exactly the kind of guy that we’re seeing become more relevant and more coveted, both in college and in the pros… With ‘Wu,’ when I watch that tape, you see explosive athleticism all over the place. Defensively, he does so many things on that film, but there are times where he’s so explosive through the line of scrimmage and I’m talking about as a linebacker. Now he plays rover for us, which is like a nickel position essentially, and that kind of folds in a different skill set. I was so impressed with his second level linebacker film. The way he found windows to the ball, the way he accelerated in a bent position, it separated him completely…”
Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah plays like he’s shot out of a cannon 💥💪— PFF (@PFF) April 28, 2021
Who will land PFF’s LB2? 📈 pic.twitter.com/7DYKmgSfDk
DT- Christian Barmore- Alabama
If the Eagles goal in the 2nd round is to add depth at DT, while finding the future replacement at Starter for Fletcher Cox, Barmore is certainly a way to go. He was ALL-SEC last year, with 8 sacks, and forcing 3 fumbles. He was especially impressive in the National Championship game, netting one sack, and two tackles for a loss. Both came at opportune times, and he eventually earned Defensive MVP of the game.
If you were to just watch his highlights, you would think Barmore would be a sure fire 1st rounder, and maybe even top 10. When he is one, his mix of burst and power lets him overwhelm anyone in his way. The issue is consistency. As a redshirt sophomore, he has only two years of collegiate experience, and that shows in inconsistent technique. There may be an adjustment period in the NFL.
But the potential is through the roof, and with some patience and development, he could turn into a force. Teach him how to more consistently utilize his hand placement and stopping him in one on one matchups will be a nightmare. He also offers positional versatility, having the size and speed to play both inside and out if need, though he will primarily play inside.
Since Eagles certainly aren’t in win now mode, and have the current D Line talent to allow Barmore to come off the bench for now, they could be a perfect fit for the developmental DT. He is also a local kid for what that is worth.
S-Trevon Moehrig- TCU
The Eagles have no long term plans at Safety. Offseason addition Anthony Harris is on a one year deal, and Rodney McLeod is coming off a torn ACL and about to turn 31. Enter Trevon Moehrig, considered the draft’s top safety.
The one common critique I found about him is his motor runs too hot, and he sometimes over commits to a play. But if the wort attribute about a guy is he is too amped up, and too eager to make a play, that is not always a bad thing. He can’t be over committing to plays as a habit, but you’d rather a guy you need to calm down than a guy you need to wake up.
And even in those instances where he does make that mistake, he has the speed, awareness, and quickness to make up for it. He can get back into plays he takes himself out of. he is also a playmaker, being the type of guy who can attack the ball. He had only 2 interceptions last year, but had 4 in 2019. \
If safety is the position you want, Moehrig is the guy to target.
#TCU safety Trevon Moehrig (6-2, 202, Jr.) is arguably the most versatile safety in the country.— Jordan Reid (@Jordan_Reid) December 11, 2020
Has shown that he can roam as a centerfielder on the roof, dependable in man coverage and a reliable tackler coming downhill. Also a constant turnover creator. pic.twitter.com/M5M6c2baxS
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