For the first time in the Andy Reid era, the Philadelphia Eagles have spent a first round draft pick on an interior offensive linemen. The Eagles welcomed Danny Watkins, the 27-year old guard out of Baylor to the family with the No. 23 overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft.
Watkins will quickly become a fan favorite with the blue collar Eagles fanbase. A volunteer fire fighter than didn’t even play high school football, Watkins is a rough and tumble, hard nosed man that won’t need any grooming from a physicality stand point. At 6’3", 313 pounds, Watkins is projected to slide over to guard at the NFL level, but the NFL Network guys quickly pointed out that Reid will give Watkins every opportunity to compete for a hat at tackle.
For those who might question selecting a player that age, it’s worth noting that Watkins’ has very little wear and tear on his body due to not playing competitive ball until college. Don’t forget as well that Watkins’ physical and emotional maturity will be an asset as the Eagles try to get over the hump now rather than building for the future.
We will have much more analysis and reaction to the Eagles’ first round selection later in the evening and over the course of the weekend. To see how Eagles fans are feeling about the pick, head on over to Bleeding Green Nation to join the discussion with fellow fans as we wind down the final few picks of this year’s first round.