Philadelphia Eagles Draft 2012: What the Eagles Should Do in the First Round

WesAnalyst INovember 27, 2016

TEMPE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 24:   Vontaze Burfict #7 of the Arizona State Sun Devils points and yells at quarterback Matt Barkley #7 of the University of Southern California Trojans just prior to a play at Sun Devil Stadium on September 24, 2011 in Tempe, Arizona.  (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
Norm Hall/Getty Images

Hopefully Andy Reid was attacking the Super Bowl buffet, and missed the Giants' 21-17 win over the Patriots.

If he came up for some air, and peaked around the nacho dip, he would have seen Chase Blackburn come up with one of the biggest plays in Super Bowl XLVI.

Early in the fourth quarter, Tom Brady eluded the Giants pass rush, stepped outside of the pocket, and saw tight end Rob Gronkowski about 50 yards downfield, with one-on-one coverage against Blackburn. It was the perfect matchup, until Brady underthrew the ball, and Blackburn came up with an interception.

It doesn't seem like much, until you actually think about who Blackburn is, and how it relates to Reid's logic when it comes to linebackers.

Blackburn bounced around the Giants roster until 2011, which seemed to mark the end of his playing days.

The seven-year NFL vet, who went undrafted out of Akron, was in line to take over for an eighth-grade math teacher out on maternity leave, until he got a call from the Giants in November.

The Giants plugged Blackburn into to their system, and he made the necessary play to help the Giants win their fourth Super Bowl in franchise history.

At that very moment, it made Reid look like a genius because it proved that anybody can be used at the linebacker position.

It gave Reid all of the justification in the world to, once again, undervalue a position he has been ignoring since 1999, even though it is the biggest need currently staring Reid directly in the face.

Hopefully Reid missed the play, or he didn't make the connection for the sake of Eagles fans.

It is imperative that Reid address the hole at linebacker in the first round of the draft, regardless if they sign one in free agency.

At some point, Reid needs to draft a young linebacker who can become the face of the defense, insert some much needed toughness and actually make a play in clutch situations.

Contrary to popular belief, Reid has a pretty solid track record when it comes to his draft picks.

He's drafted a Pro Bowler at every position except fullback, kicker, punter and linebacker.

When is he going to realize the value of a linebacker? And when is he going to get it through his thick skull that it is much easier to draft a quality linebacker capable of making plays, instead of relying on potluck?

Who cares if Reid goes after Arizona State's Vontaze Burfict, Boston College's Luke Kuechly or Alabama's Dont'a Hightower?

Reid and his staff have obviously been able to identify talent in the first round in the past. Maybe they could actually use their time and effort to scout, and target, a linebacker in the first round.

Until that happens, Reid will continue to go about business as usual, and it will lead to us talking about who the Eagles can draft, instead of celebrating a Super Bowl win.