The Eagles could use an OLB or two. On Monday they had a chance to see some pretty good ones.
Khalil Mack (6-3, 251) put on a show and looked like a high pick. I don’t think the Eagles would have a chance to move up for him without paying a ridiculously high price and as good as Mack is, I don’t think he’s that level of “Must Have Him” player. He ran 4.65 and had a 40-inch vertical jump. That’s the kind of speed and explosion you want at OLB, especially in the 3-4. Mack was good, but a bit sloppy in the drills. Does he go before Jadeveon Clowney? Never thought I’d seriously ask that question.
Anthony Barr had a very good workout. He measured in at 6-5, 255, which is bigger than I expected. I’m sure Chip Kelly is in love with that frame. Barr almost matched Mack in the 40, running a 4.66. He only posted 34.5 in the VJ. Barr had an outstanding 3-cone time of 6.82. That is great agility for a tall, longer player. That agility shows up on tape as you see him bend and dip by OL when he’s pass rushing. Barr could be a Top 5 pick or he could slide to pick 15. I don’t think he gets anywhere close to 22. The Eagles could move up for him, depending upon how far he falls. If Barr makes it outside the Top 10, the price might become reasonable. The question is whether he’s worth giving up a 2nd round pick (possibly more) to get.
At this point, I think both Mack and Barr will be long gone.
One of my personal favorites, Jeremiah Attaochu, wasn’t able to perform. Hopefully he’s back to 100 percent for his Pro Day. The Eagles did get to study him closely at the Senior Bowl so there isn’t as much mystery with him.
Marcus Smith weighed in at 251, which is 7 pounds lighter than the Senior Bowl. Some guys do this so they will be faster. He ran 4.68, which is a good time. He had a 35-inch VJ, which is good. The one area where Smith struggled was the 3-cone. He came in at 7.48. That needs to be down closer to 7.00-7.15. I didn’t get to see his on-field workouts yet, but I’m still a fan of his.
Chris Smith from Arkansas is shorter than what Kelly wants at just 6-1, but he has 34-inch arms and that helps to make up for the lack of height. Chris had a similar workout to Marcus. He ran 4.71 and had a VJ of 37 inches. His 3-cone time was 7.55, which isn’t good for an edge rusher.
Dee Ford chose not to work out. He did measure in at 6-2, 252, which is up 9 pounds from the Senior Bowl. I’m disappointed that he didn’t workout. Makes you wonder if that added weight was the right kind.
I was surprised with the numbers Adrian Hubbard put up. He measured in at 6-6, 257 and ran a 4.69. That’s faster than I would have guessed for him. He had a VJ of 38.5, showing way more explosion than I expected. He wasn’t explosive on tape. I definitely need to watch more of him.
Kyle Van Noy came in at 6-3, 243. He ran 4.71, which isn’t great for someone at that weight. His VJ was just 32.5 inches. His 3-cone was 7.22, which isn’t impressive for a guy his size. That’s a pedestrian showing. Not bad, but it didn’t help him at all. I like Van Noy, but not as a pass rusher. I value him as an ILB or as The Jack, Connor Barwin’s spot. Van Noy is a better football player than athlete. He could go as high as the 2nd round, but he’s not the answer to the Eagles need for a pass rusher. I would have no problem with the Eagles taking him and using him as an ILB and backup OLB.
James Gayle from Virginia Tech helped himself. Gayle (6-4, 259) ran 4.70. He did 26 reps on the bench. He had a VJ of 37 inches. His 3-cone time of 7.19 is good for his weight. Gayle is more physical than athletic when you watch the game tape. He’s another guy I’ll need to watch some more.
The Missouri guys didn’t fare so well. Both Kony Ealy (4.92) and Michael Sam (4.91) ran poorly in the 40. That’s going to kill Sam, who also didn’t lift or jump well. He measured in at 6-2, 261 and needed to show better athleticism than that. He’s now looking like a 5th or 6th round pick. Ealy is 6-4, 273. He can overcome the poor 40 due to that size. He also had a great 3-cone time, 6.83. Agility and quickness are more important for DL than pure speed. I don’t think the Eagles will be very interested in either guy. Neither looks like a 3-4 OLB.
Some small school kids did stand out.
Larry Webster from Bloomsburg measured in at 6-6, 252. He ran 4.58. That is a great size-speed combo. He had a VJ of 36.5 inches. His 3-cone time of 7.29 wasn’t impressive, but the overall workout got the attention of teams.
Howard Jones is a player I’d never heard of prior to Monday. He went to Shepherd College. Jones is only 6-2, 235, but he showed terrific athleticism. He ran 4.60 and had a VJ of 40.5 inches. His 3-cone time of 7.16 is solid, but was helped by only being 235 pounds. Hopefully we can find some game tape of him. Could be an interesting late round target.
I didn’t cover every OLB prospect, but these are the big names and most interesting guys.
I’ll write about the ILBs in another post. That’s not as big of a need area, but could be one of interest.