We are going to look at the rookies on the Eagles roster through Week 13. We will give each one a grade through their current performance. So who has overachieved? Who has underachieved? Who has not done anything at all? Join me as we look at Brandon Graham, Nate Allen and other Eagles rookies.
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The Eagles spent their first round pick on Graham, hoping he could provide a pass rush from the other side to take some pressure off Trent Cole. That hasn't really happened. Graham has shown flashes of potential, but overall, I would call his rookie year underwhelming.
I am not ready to give up on him yet, but I would say the Eagles were hoping to get more than they got out of Graham so far. Through 12 games, Graham has 13 tackles and 3 sacks. Pretty underwhelming stats. On the other hand, you have to hope he improves next year and in the future.
Grade: D+ This seems about right. I don't think he has been even average. He has been pretty lousy, but he does have 3 sacks and with four games left, if he ends his rookie year with 5 or more sacks, he might get a C despite the low tackle numbers.
Allen won the starting free safety job out of training camp and immediately became a fan favorite with INTs early in the season. Allen looked a lot like he was going to be the next great Eagles safety, but he also got injured and seems to have regressed a little bit in recent weeks.
However, he is better than any FS the Eagles had last season. For the season, he has 44 tackles, 3 INTs and 2 sacks. Solid numbers for a rookie. Allen has definitely been the best rookie for the Eagles this season and will likely end up being their best pick.
Grade: A- Allen has done well for a rookie and seems to have a bright future ahead of him. His recent struggles still have a chance to turn around. He is still a solid player for years to come here.
For a third round pick, Teo-Nesheim has not even really seen the field. He has been so irrelevant he does not even have a picture in the database. That's bad. I know he was drafted as a bit of a project, but for a third round pick to have only four games played and one tackle for the season, that has to be a disappointment.
I could give him a grade of incomplete since we have not seen much from him, and honestly, if he was a fifth, sixth, or seventh round pick, I would say it was okay for him to do so little. However, he was a third round pick and you should get some sort of contribution from a third round pick. He has given them nothing.
Grade: F I don't see any other choice here. He could still wind up being a good player someday but the guy was taken in the third round and so far, has done nothing and has not really gotten a chance to do anything, but then again, there is a reason he has not gotten a chance. He obviously has not impressed anyone in practice.
Lindley has 1 INT, 1 fumble recovery, and 14 tackles in seven games played. He has not gotten a ton of time or opportunities. However, the last couple weeks, with Asante Samuel injured, he has gotten more of an opportunity. He had a poor game against Chicago but did a pretty good job against Houston last week.
Still, I think Lindley could be a good player someday. It is hard to evaluate a draft this early, but I think in order for this draft to be a success, the Eagles need more than just Nate Allen to end up being a solid player. Lindley has a chance. I think he will compete for the starting CB spot next season opposite Samuel, or at least the nickel spot.
Grade: C He was a fourth round pick, so I think the expectations go down significantly after you are out of the top 100. Lindley has shown some potential and could be a good player someday.
Clayton started the season on the inactive list but he has been active lately because he has earned a spot on the field with solid practices. Clayton has 4.5 speed which is great for a linebacker, and has played in nickel and dime lately. I think Clayton's speed is intriguing and if he can learn the system and improve, he has a chance. Still, he hasn't shown much so far.
Grade: C- He keeps improving though, so if he plays well down the stretch, this could be higher.
Kafka played pretty well in pre-season but like most mid-late round QBs he has not seen the field at all in the regular season, which is a good thing. If he sees the field, that means Vick and Kolb are both hurt, and that is a situation we don't want. We know Reid likes to draft QBs, groom them, and then try to trade them for a higher pick or keep them. If Kafka impresses he could be the primary backup in two years, but his likelihood of ever getting an everyday chance with the Eagles is minimal. The best case scenario is he becomes a solid backup for us, or good enough that we trade him for a second or third round pick.
Harbour has three receptions for 33 yards this season, as he has started to see more playing time lately. Celek's offensive role has been greatly reduced, so you couldn't expect much from Harbour, as Eagles have used their TEs mostly to block. The good news is Harbour has shown good hands when he has been thrown the ball, and the Eagles speak highly of him.
You can't really grade Sapp, who was placed on injured reserve with a knee injury and has not played this season. Still, a rookie with a serious injury will have a tough time being a productive NFL player.
Cooper stepped up when DeSean Jackson was out with a concussion, playing well against the Titans in a losing effort. Cooper has shown flashes of brilliance at times, and seems to be demanding more playing time. Injuries have slowed him down some, but I really like what I have seen this season from Riley. I think the Eagles will continue to get more production from Cooper in the future and he may be able to become a solid #2 or #3 WR someday. For a late fifth round pick, I think this kid has overachieved.
The Eagles traded 6th round pick Charles Scott to Arizona for CB Jorrick Calvin. Calvin has contributed in the kick return game and at CB a little bit, so for a 6th round pick, I would say Scott gave us good value because we got a player for him that made the team and has contributed a little bit.
Jamar Chaney was a 7th round pick and has had 12 tackles in 10 games played. Not much of a contribution, but for a special teams player and a 7th round pick, not terrible either.
Jeff Owens has not played in a game this season, so I cannot give him a grade. We may never see him contribute in an Eagles uniform or we might see him get a chance to make the team again next year, time will tell.
The Eagles last pick in the 2010 draft, Coleman was not expected to do much. So he has drastically overachieved. Coleman has actually started a couple games and has done a nice job. For a 7th round pick, he has been a huge surprise. Nate Allen and Coleman could be the two FS on this team for the long term. Either way, Coleman should stay in this league as he has shown a lot.
GRADE: A+ For their last pick, he has contributed more than most rookies, and that is a huge accomplishment.