Will Lukas Van Ness hear his name called by the Eagles on draft night? The edge rusher from Iowa is certainly a name to keep an eye on.
We know the Eagles love drafting linemen. Whether it comes on offense or defense. Last year they took DT Jordan Davis out of Georgia in the first and then Center Cam Jurgens from Nebraska in the second round. In the prior draft, they may have taken Devonta Smith in the first round, but in the next two rounds, they took Landon Dickerson and Milton Williams. And in 2019 their first-round pick was Andre Dillard. Overall, they have taken either an offensive or defensive lineman in one of the first two rounds of 10 of the last 13 drafts.
They are pretty set in terms of starters on the offensive line. That certainly does not preclude them from taking an offensive lineman. In fact, neither Dickerson, Jurgens, nor Dillard were picks that filled immediate needs. Two of them barely played their rookie season, and Dickerson only did because of an injury. But a defensive lineman could certainly be defined as a more immediate need. They lost Javon Hargrave to free agency. And while they brought both Fletcher Cox and Brandon Graham back, both are on one-year deals and are getting older.
So could Lukas Van Ness from Iowa be the answer for the Eagles at DL? We already looked at other options along the defensive line. Namely Jalen Carter, Myles Murphy, and Bryan Bresee. But none of them were quite as productive as Van Ness in College. And none have as cool of a nickname as he does either? Does all of that mean he is a better pick than they would be though?