It might be time to familiarize yourself with the NFL prospects who were in Mobile, Alabama, earlier this offseason for the Senior Bowl.
The Eagles certainly have.
In an unusual pre-draft year thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, there was no Combine in Indianapolis, no in-person visits to team facilities and even attendance at college pro days was limited. So the Eagles threw themselves into the Senior Bowl in late January.
“There were a ton of us that went down to the Senior Bowl this year,” Eagles vice president of player personnel Andy Weidl said this week. “We did have the Senior Bowl. We got a lot of work done there. Typical years we interview 15 to 16 guys. This year we interviewed every player down there, so that was about 128 interviews, and we got to know those players and we got a feel for them.
Get Philly local news, weather forecasts, sports and entertainment stories to your inbox. Sign up for NBC Philadelphia newsletters.
“Then we brought that information home, we relayed it to Howie and Nick, and we had Zoom interviews, follow-ups, and it was their chance to get to know them after we had the initial experience down in Mobile, Alabama.”
The Eagles have never been hesitant to draft players from the Senior Bowl in past seasons and you can bet they definitely won’t be this year after getting the chance to go in-depth with every prospect in attendance. It seems like they basically swapped out the interview process at the Combine for one at the Senior Bowl.
For reference, the Eagles have drafted 36 players since Howie Roseman has been back in control of personnel matters and 11 of them (30.6%) have been on a Senior Bowl roster. And in the last 10 drafts, 25 of 77 players the Eagles have selected (32.5%) were at the Senior Bowl.
Complete coverage of the Philadelphia Eagles and their NFL rivals from NBC Sports Philadelphia.
So we’re talking about a third of the players the Eagles have drafted in the last decade have spent a week in Mobile. Yeah, maybe it’s time to familiarize ourselves with the rosters from this year’s game.
Here are the 25 Senior Bowl players the Eagles have selected in the last decade: Jalen Hurts, Davion Taylor, K’Von Wallace, Prince Tega Wanogho, Andre Dillard, Dallas Goedert, Rasul Douglas, Donnel Pumphrey, Nate Gerry, Carson Wentz, Jalen Mills, Eric Rowe, Jordan Hicks, Jacorey Shepherd, Marcus Smith, Lane Johnson, Jordan Poyer, Vinny Curry, Nick Foles, Brandon Boykin, Marvin McNutt, Danny Watkins, Jaiquawn Jarrett, Casey Matthews, Alex Henery
There are obviously some hits and misses in that list, but the important thing is that the Eagles get a lot of players from the Senior Bowl and that seems unlikely to change in a year where they did this much homework on those players.
The executive director of the Senior Bowl, Jim Nagy, (who did a tremendous job putting on the event safely this year) tweeted out a list of the practice players of the week back in January. They were voted on by the players who played against them.
That’s probably where we should start as we learn about these players:
Overall Practice Player of the Week: Dillon Radunz, OL, North Dakota State
Top QB: Ian Book, Notre Dame (National), Mac Jones, Alabama (American)
Top OL: Quinn Meinerz, Wisconsin-Whitewater (National), David Moore Jr., Grambling State (American)
Top TE: Hunter Long, Boston College (National), Tre’ McKitty, Georgia (American)
Top RB: Michael Carter, North Carolina (National), Kylin Hill, Mississippi State (American)
Top WR: Kadarius Toney, Florida (American)
Top DL: Osa Odighizuwa, UCLA (National), Cameron Sample, Tulane (American)
Top LB: Tony Fields II, West Virginia (National), K.J. Britt, Auburn (American)
Top S: Christian Uphoff, Illinois State (National), Richie Grant, UCF (American)
Top CB: Tre Brown, Oklahoma (National), D.J. Daniel, Georgia (American)
Top Specialist: Riley Patterson, Memphis (National), Max Duffy, Kentucky (American)
What are the chances one or a few of those players end up in Philadelphia? Well, it definitely wouldn’t be a surprise.