NFL Mock Draft 2019 Roundup 3.0: A New Consensus Favorite?

We're in full mock draft season. 

Everyone will take a stab (multiple stabs) at trying to predict what will happen in the first round of the NFL draft in a couple months, so we're doing our best to track them. 

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The Eagles hold the 25th pick in the draft (and likely eight picks after that) so let's take another stroll around the internet to see who several "experts" have them taking at 25: 

NFL.com, Lance Zierlein

Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson 

Here's what they said: "Haloti Ngata is due to hit the market this offseason, and will Timmy Jernigan be back in 2019? There could be an opening or two at DT, which would clear the way for Lawrence, who flashes the ability to manhandle opponents."

SI.com, Kalyn Kahler

Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson

Here's what they said: "Lawrence is primarily an early-down run-stuffer, but he has a rare combination of size and athleticism and has flashed upside in the pass-rush. His gargantuan body type is really hard to find (6' 4", 350 lbs.) which makes him an intriguing pick for the Eagles, whose recent success has come in large part from investing heavily in offensive and defensive lines."

NFL.com, Bucky Brooks

Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson

Here's what they said: "The Eagles have joined the ranks of the NFL elite by investing heavily in the offensive and defensive lines. Lawrence is a rugged nose tackle with the size and strength to erase runs between the guards while also collapsing the pocket with bull rushes on passing downs."

My take on Lawrence: OK, so this seems to be the most popular pick as we sit here in late January. In my first Eagles-only mock draft, I actually had them taking Lawrence's teammate Christian Wilkins. I actually think Wilkins would be a better fit with the Eagles, but that doesn't mean Lawrence isn't a good and intriguing prospect. Lawrence is bigger and is known as more of a run-stuffer, but he still is pretty athletic for as big as he is. That Clemson team is likely to have three defensive linemen drafted in the first round and the Eagles would probably be happy to get any of them. The Birds definitely need some help along the defensive line and the good news is that the DL is a real strength of this draft class. 

CBS Sports, Ryan Wilson

Deionte Thompson, S, Alabama

Here's what they said: "Thompson is one of the best safeties in this class and he would solidify an Eagles' secondary that was replacement level in pass defense, according to Football Outsiders." 

My take on Thompson: He's probably the best safety in this draft class. He's an absolute playmaker and worthy of a first-round pick. While the Eagles have taken quite a few safeties in the second round over the years, they've never taken a safety in the first round. They haven't taken a DB of any kind in the first round since Lito Sheppard in 2002. But depending on what happens with Rodney McLeod and his expensive cap hit, the Eagles could be in the market for a cheap but talented replacement. 

CBS Sports, R.J. White

N'Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State 

Here's what they said: "The Eagles could go in a few different directions, but one area of concern is at wide receiver, where they traded for Golden Tate during the season to give them a boost despite him hitting free agency this offseason. Harry is in the mix to be the first player at his position off the board as a potentially dominant outside receiver with great hands. If he has a big combine, he could shoot up the first-round projections."

My take on Harry: He's 6-foot-3 and nearly 220 pounds and has a lot in common with Alshon Jeffery in that he can go up and win those 50-50 balls. Not sure he'd be a perfect fit with the Eagles in 2019 because of that, but he's definitely a really good receiver, who put up big numbers at Arizona State and would be worthy of a first-round pick. The Eagles have Jeffery and Nelson Agholor under contract so a cheap third option through the draft or free agency would make sense. 

USA Today DraftWire, Luke Easterling

Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia

Here's what they said: "Philly's lack of depth at corner was painfully evident as injuries stacked up down the stretch last season, and this offseason gives them a chance to address it. Baker is a tough, instinctive player with a nose for the ball who could become an instant starter."

My take on Baker: Well, down the stretch, I thought the Eagles' depth at corner was evident. Rasul Douglas and Avonte Maddox played well, Cre'Von LeBlanc was a revelation and next season Jalen Mills will be back from injury, Sidney Jones should be healthy and all of the sudden, the Eagles have a stable group of young cornerbacks even if Ronald Darby walks. That's not to say they won't draft one. I guess it's possible. But the Eagles, as I said earlier, haven't drafted a cornerback in the first round since 2002. They love drafting offensive and defensive linemen and they seem to have needs at both of those spots, so that's the way I tend to think they're leaning.

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