2010 NFL Draft: Is Taylor Mays the Answer At No. 24 for Eagles?

Dan ParzychSenior Writer IApril 19, 2010

TEMPE, AZ - NOVEMBER 7:  Taylor Mays #2 of the USC Trojans lines up against the Arizona State Sun Devils on November 7, 2009 at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona.  USC won 14-9.  (Photo by Jeff Golden/Getty Images)
Jeff Golden/Getty Images

In their first season this decade without defensive coordinator Jim Johnson and Brian Dawkins, the Philadelphia Eagles displayed a weakness at the safety position throughout the 2009 season and will look to improve during the upcoming draft.

This year’s draft class contains a number of talented safeties that would be a perfect fit for Sean McDermott’s defense in 2010. Tennessee safety Eric Berry is arguably the best at his position, but will most likely be selected in the top 10. The only chance the Eagles appear to have at acquiring him is if they decided to trade up in the first round–which is a possibility.

Another player that comes to mind is Texas safety Earl Thomas. While many analysts questioned his ability to make an impact in the NFL because of his height, Thomas’ stock has risen over the last few months thanks to strong performances at the NFL Combine and for private workouts with teams.

Unfortunately for Philadelphia, Thomas is beginning to draw interest from numerous teams ahead of them in the first round–which means the Eagles will most likely have to trade up if they want to acquire him.

With Berry and Thomas most likely off of the board once the 24th pick rolls around, there’s a chance the Eagles may have to settle with another safety.

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Taylor Mays.

The USC product has drawn interest from numerous teams and is expected to be drafted late in the first round. He has the size and speed to be an effective safety in the NFL–which the Eagles desperately need.

Many experts have compared Mays talent to Washington Redskins safety Sean Taylor. The argument can be made that no player will ever be able to fill in the shoes left by Dawkins during his 13 years with the Eagles.

However, by drafting a safety like Mays, Philadelphia would at least be heading in the right direction.

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