The Philadelphia Eagles must build upon the success of last season, but in order to accomplish that they must improve the defense.
Round 1, Pick 22: Jeremiah Attaochu, DE/OLB, Georgia Tech
One area of concern with the Philadelphia Eagles on defense was finding a pass rusher who could also cover well. Thus limiting the ability of offenses such as the New Orleans Saints from exploiting those players. While Connor Barwin has been great as a pass rusher and run stopper, his hips and fluidity make him a constant target by defenses. That’s why the Eagles should draft a guy like Jeremiah Attaochu who is very athletic and can become just as impactful as Connor Barwin with time. This shouldn’t be the end of Connor Barwin’s career on the Eagles, but he should become more of a rotational guy, instead of depending on him to cover obvious mismatches on the perimeter.
Round 2, Pick 21: Deone Bucannon, S, Washington State
The cornerbacks on the Eagles had some issues, but safety help was a big area of concern all season long. Bucannon is a very impressive athlete who can be an enforcer in the middle, but also has a high football I.Q. for the position. He can be an instant fit and bring some stability to the back-end of the defense. And Chip Kelly loves drafting PAC-12 guys, so he will be sure to remember the players who flashed to him on tape. My bet is Kelly already knows about how great Bucannon can be, but one can only hope no one wakes up to it before the Eagles pick in the second-round.
With the front seven and secondary addressed, there will probably be some who want to address wide receiver in the first, two picks. However, Chip Kelly’s offense makes the wide receiver position less important a priority, because the skill sets he is looking for are scheme specific. You don’t have to draft a Calvin Johnson to get explosive plays in a Kelly offense. Because of that, it would be more advantageous to draft wide receivers in Day 3. But I want to hear from you.
What strategy or players would you like to draft in the 2014 NFL draft?
James Cobern is a Division Leader and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or on twitter @Jmcobern1