After the past two drafts, the Eagles’ front office is looking a bit like the oakland Raiders’ front office when it comes to picking wide receivers. They are looking for speedy guys that can stretch the defense and run screens well.
The one exception is that the Eagles’ front office is actually making good decisions.
This year, however, the criteria for wideouts needs to change.
Ideally, the Eagles need a player that can catch a ball over the middle and not get shaken up. The red-zone threat factor is nonexistent for the Eagles’ passing game. As much as I wish it could, not every play can be a 50-yard bomb to DeSean Jackson.
Getting rid of one of the more pedestrian receivers (read below) would be a great place to start.
First, Reggie Brown. Only nine receptions for 155 yards? This guy is a Todd Pinkston without the three good seasons.
Second, Kevin Curtis. He isn’t looking like the 1,000 yard K-Curt of 2007. The speed he had a few years ago is long gone, and he has some injury problems.
Plus, he really does need a haircut.
That means there are only two reliable possession receivers on the team: Brent Celek and Jason Avant. and one of them is a tight end.
Avant came up big in San Diego, as well as racking up some nice catches against Denver—he definitely doesn’t get the credit he deserves. Number 81 is perhaps the only shining star in Philly’s backup wideout category.
Filling holes in the team’s roster is what the draft is for, and Danario Alexander is probably the best fit for the Eagles’ passing offense right now.
At 6'5" 221 lbs, Alexander would be the Eagles' heaviest and tallest receiver. His height and weight could make Alexander a serious "red zone threat." From the highlights I’ve seen of him, he would actually make a pretty good threat over the middle and definitely a go-to-guy inside the 20.
He isn’t all that fast, but he has great route running skills, and I haven't seen him drop a ball once all season.
Coming out of Mizzou’s spread offense, Alexander should be able to learn the Eagles' offense pretty quickly. Former Mizzou teammate Jeremy Maclin adjusted very well and seems to have no problem remembering his routes.
But Maclin didn’t weigh 221, nor is he 6'5".
Alexander is a bit slow when it comes to changing directions. During his time with Mizzou, he would run routes that didn’t require him to stop and go or turn very often. This could be a weakness for Alexander, but he would still be ideal for running slants, streaks and fades. He would also be hard to cover man-to-man, and his long strides make him a viable deep threat.
With a solid senior season, Alexander is expected to go somewhere in the third round, (most mock drafts are putting him on the 49ers with the 79th pick, but some scouts see him going somewhere in the fifth round).
He finished the year with 14 touchdowns, 113 receptions and 1,781 yards.
If the Eagles do in fact get rid of a WR, they should definitely look for this guy after they address their defensive problems.
I can see Alexander fitting into this team well, and at the same time filling the need for a big threat over the middle and in the end zone.
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