Eagles' 2007 Draft Class Will Take Center Stage in 2010

Bob Cunningham@BCunningham215Senior Analyst IApril 18, 2010

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 13:  Brent Celek #87 of the Philadelphia Eagles celebrates after scoring a touchdown in the first quarter against the New York Giants at Giants Stadium on December 13, 2009 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Michael Heiman/Getty Images)
Michael Heiman/Getty Images

They say it takes three years to evaluate a draft class, so now with the 2009 season in the rearview mirror the 2007 class has had their three years. However, it might not be fair to look back on this class just yet.

Kevin Kolb, the first Eagles selection in '07, has only started two games in those three years while he waited behind Donovan McNabb. Only now is he getting the opportunity to show what he can really do as he will have a full offseason as the team's starter and will have, at least, 16 games to prove his worth.

Stewart Bradley and Brent Celek, taken in the third and fifth rounds respectively, have each shown flashes of superstar ability, but must do it again if they're going to be taken seriously as elite players in this league.

Both did very well in their first season as the starter, but anyone can have one good year and then fall off. These two young guys have a lot to prove, but with far different circumstances surrounding them.

While Celek simply has to show that he can replicate his '09 season, Bradley faces a much more difficult challenge in returning from a major knee injury. A year removed from his Pro Bowl-caliber season, he will have to show that the injury hasn't hampered his progress as a player and have an even better season than he did in '08.

Then, there's Victor Abiamiri.

Like Kolb, Abiamiri was a second-round pick, but he's done even less than Kolb has in his three years in Philadelphia.

Abiamiri is constantly hurt, and when he is finally healthy he's all but nonexistent on the field to the point where I sometimes forget he's on this team. If he can't find a way to stay healthy and meaningfully contribute, he is going to find his way out of town and be desperate to find a team that will take him.

The Eagles have shown faith in him over the past couple seasons, but after the trade for Darryl Tapp it looks like the Birds are prepping for life after Abiamiri and view any contribution from him as a plus.

It's got to kill any competitive player when you're being counted on to produce and can't, but it's got to be even worse when nothing is expected of you at all.

The Eagles' other picks—Tony Hunt (third round), C.J. Gaddis (fifth round), Rashad Barksdale (sixth round), and Nate Ilaoa (seventh round)—are no longer on the team and, as far as I know, are no longer in the NFL.

So, needless to say, not a whole lot will be expected from them—unless we count their boss at Nationwide or State Farm.

Kolb, Abiamiri, Bradley, and Celek will all play a vital role in the upcoming season, and if they're able to make an impact it would make for a very successful draft class, despite the four other failed picks.

And by the way, Kolb, Bradley, and Celek all came from picks collected when the Eagles traded out of the first round with the Dallas Cowboys—a move heavily criticized by everyone, including myself.

But if all three of those guys go on to be the stars the Eagles expect them to be, would you really trade any of the three for Anthony Spencer?


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