ESPN draft guru Mel Kiper has issued his 2011 NFL Draft grades and the Eagles did an average job by his estimation. Here is Mel’s reasoning.
“This feels like last year. I look at the Philly board and think, “Well, they got a lot of guys.” The Eagles targeted what I considered their three biggest needs with their first three picks. The selection of Watkins surprised some people, as he may have been available even into the early second round, but they may believe he has the capability to stay at tackle. I think he’s a guard. Elsewhere, Jarrett provides depth at safety, and Marsh will be asked to step in early at corner. David Akers can’t feel too confident about his future in Philly, as Henery was the first kicker off the board. The looming question now is what picks or players will come back if and when the Eagles decide to deal Kevin Kolb."
I have a few reactions. For one, I think the Eagles absolutely expect Danny Watkins to play guard from day one. Whether or not he would have been on the board later is just a guess, but I’ll say that sources at the draft told me that they expected the Bears to take him at #29 if he was still on the board. So who knows if the Eagles could have got him later.
I very highly doubt that CB Curtis Marsh will be asked to “step in early” as Mel suggests. Yes, he could get on the field, but not as a starter. I expect the Eagles to address the starting RCB spot in the free agency, whenever that finally happens.
Speaking of free agency, I’d say that’s the looming question as far as what the Eagles do next… but yeah Kevin Kolb’s future is a question.
One thing I do agree with is “They got a lot of guys.” The Eagles made 11 picks in this draft.