By Ryan Ratty @RyanRattyNFL on March 18, 2014
After making the playoffs in Chip Kelly's first season as head coach, the Eagles have to make improvements across the defensive side of the ball. If the right players are brought in, Philadelphia could go as far as the NFC Championship game next year. To compete with the Seattle Seahawks and the San Francisco 49ers, the Eagles will need to have a defensive-minded draft.
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The Eagles need to get more pressure on the quarterback, and they can do that by drafting an edge rusher like Dee Ford. The Auburn product put on a show at the Senior Bowl. He even got the MVP award for that game. Ford is small at 6-foot-2, 250 pounds, but he plays much bigger than he is. Many will say he's a speed pass rusher, but Ford has one heck of a bull rush move. He would be a nice fit across from Trent Cole.
After signing Malcolm Jenkins, the Eagles have tried to upgrade their secondary. The problem is that Jenkins will need a guy next to him to be an enforcer. That guy could be Deone Bucannon. When it comes to an in-the-box safety, there might not be a better one in this class than Bucannon. He is a good strong safety who can pack a punch in the defensive backfield.
Chip Kelly loves PAC-12 products. Although Stanford is an enemy of Oregon, there is no doubting Shayne Skov's ability to be something special in the NFL. He had a few ACL surgeries in college, but he has terrific instincts and he isn't that bad against the pass too. The Eagles should select another linebacker, and Skov can play outside or inside going forward.
After re-signing Jeremy Maclin and Riley Cooper, some might say that the Eagles are set at this position. But Jason Avant was released, and he was another pass catcher for Nick Foles in this offense. The Eagles should select a tall and physical receiver, and Cody Hoffman is a name that comes to mind. He is a long-strider, but he can use his body to box out defenders. Hoffman would be a really nice weapon in the red zone.
If it weren't for an ACL injury during the Senior Bowl week, Aaron Colvin would most likely be chosen in round two or three. But his injury has dropped his stock tremendously. It is no secret that the Eagles need another cornerback, and there are plenty of viable options in this draft. Colvin could come in as the nickel cornerback, but he could become a starter if he shows that his ACL injury is in the past.
Boseko Lokombo is an Oregon player who was ridiculously versatile in his four-year career with the Ducks. The Eagles need better play from their outside linebackers, and Lokombo could move across the defense with his flexibility. Chip Kelly would be thrilled to get one of his favorite college players on his NFL team.
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