2011 NFL Draft Grades: Philadelphia Eagles Day 3 Analysis and Grades
Most of these picks were for depth, but a few could end up being steals for where the Eagles got them at.
For the second straight year, the Eagles went quantity over quality so hopefully it plays out like last year, and the Eagles get contributions from their draft picks.
To open the day, the Eagles traded down from their so called "Donovan McNabb" pick. They traded that fourth-round pick (No. 104 overall) to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for their fourth-round pick (No. 116 overall) and a 2012 fourth-round pick.
Round 4 Pick 116: LB Casey Matthews
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With the first fourth-round pick, they selected linebacker Casey Matthews from Oregon, brother of Packer star Clay Matthews III.
It is great value for the Eagles because I had Matthews as their No. 48 prospect in my mock draft board for the Eagles.
Here is what I said about him:
While Matthews does not have the physical tools, he has a relentless motor and never stops working on and off the field.
Matthews can play all three linebacking spots, though he would excel in the middle, calling the plays out for the defense.
Matthews is only 6'1'' 232 pounds, but has the heart and is one of the best at reading and reacting quickly.
The Eagles continue drafting high character guys and Matthews could even win a starting job. I think he could play right away on special teams.
Round 4 Pick 120: K Alex Henery
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With their second pick they selected Alex Henery a kicker/punter from Nebraska.
People are calling Henery the best kicker to enter the draft in a while. He consistently hit bombs beyond 50 yards.
He hit 18-19 of his field goals, and 10-11 beyond 40.
It might have been a little early for a kicker, but Henery has immense talent. Henery hit a 57 yard field goal to win a game against Colorado, showing his poise.
Look for the Akers era to end in Philly.
Round 5 Pick 149: RB Dion Lewis
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Dion Lewis went from being in the same backfield in Pittsburgh with current starting running back LeSean McCoy to playing with him in Philadelphia.
Lewis is a smaller back at 5'7'' 192 pounds, but he was a workhorse at Pittsburgh.
Though he does not have elite speed, he is more football fast and has great vision like McCoy. He sees the hole and hits it fast.
In the open field, Lewis can embarrass defenders with his quick cuts and with a low center of gravity, he can get by defenders.
Lewis has solid hands and will prove to be a solid option out of the backfield for Michael Vick.
In college, Lewis had 52 receptions for 405 yards and a touchdown.
Look for Lewis to take over the backup running back spot for the Eagles next season.
Round 5 Pick 161: OG Julian Vandervelde
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Julian Vandervele, the guard from Iowa, has nice quickness and knee bend, but will have to adjust to a new type of offensive line scheme.
Iowa runs a zone-blocking scheme where Vandervele fit perfectly. He could use his decent athleticism to move laterally and pull.
Howard Mudd favors athletic offensive lineman, so I could see why Vandervele was drafted.
Vandervele can play in all three interior line spots and has 37 career starts and is a solid technician.
He has solid feet and can stay balanced against bull rushes.
Vandervele will fit in as a solid backup.
Round 6 Pick 191: C/OG Jason Kelce
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Jason Kelce is a versatile offensive lineman from Cincinnati, and though he is listed at 280 pounds, he lost weight prior to the Combine because of an appendicitis.
He played at 292 and should be able to gain weight in the offseason.
Kelce is another Howard Mudd type of offensive lineman. He is very athletic and ran a 4.9 in the 40-yard dash.
He can move well laterally and occasionally can get into the second level of the defense.
Kelce is not a powerful blocker and will sometimes be pushed back by stronger defensive lineman, but he can fit as a capable backup.
He is a much better pass protector than run blocker.
Round 6 Pick 193: LB Brian Rolle
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Rolle is small for a linebacker at 5'9'' 228 pounds, but can fit in nicely as a weakside linebacker in the Eagles scheme.
Rolle is not a liability in pass and run coverage and can make an open-field tackle, something that all the Eagles linebackers lacked.
He is a ferocious tackler and is not scared to take on bigger offensive lineman.
Rolle ran a 4.5 in the forty-yard dash. He bench pressed 225 pounds 28 times, quite impressive for a 228 pound linebacker.
Rolle said in an interview, " People who say (size) is an issue, they must not have seen any film because put on Von Miller (the draft’s top-rated linebacker, from Texas A&M) and put me on film, and everything he does, I can do just as well. So scouts and coaches–guys who actually watch film and evaluate me–I’m pretty sure they know I can play football.”
He is right that he fell because of his size. If he was 6'2'' 240, he would have been a second round pick.
Rolle has to use his hands more to fight blockers, but he could be developed into one of their top backup linebackers.
Round 7 Pick 237: LB Greg Lloyd
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Greg Lloyd III is the son of Steelers great Greg Lloyd II.
At 6'1'' 245 pounds, Lloyd has good size and translates to the middle. Like Matthews, Lloyd has great instincts and can read and react.
He tackles very well and uses his hands to shed blocks. Lloyd brings toughness to the Eagles linebacking corps as he is one of the bigger hitters in the draft.
As a pass rusher and run stopper, Lloyd is one of the best, and though he will not be a three down player because of the lack of his coverage skills, he is still a great seventh round steal.
Lloyd tore his ACL and MCL in 2009 and spend most of last season recovering from it which explains why he dropped a bit.
Lloyd struggles moving backwards, which will hurt him on passing plays, but on obvious running plays, Lloyd will be very effective.
Round 7 Pick 240: FB/RB Stanley Havii
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At only 228 pounds, Havili is more of a tweener in the backfield.
If we are calling him a fullback, then he is the best runner out of all the fullbacks in this class. He averaged over six yards per carry over his career at USC.
He is also a great receiver as he has caught 116 balls for 1290 yards in his career.
Havili is a solid pass protector and will stick his nose in fighting the defender.
While he is not a lead blocker, Havili fits in this pass happy offense.
Look for him to make the team.