Eagles Drafts 1997-2003

I decided to do my Bird's friends a favor and do the same with the
Eagles. I'll look at mainly the first four rounds, but any good picks
in later rounds will get a mention. I also list the five following
picks in the first round and the next player chosen at the same
position. You'll follow.

#25 – Jon Harris - DE

26 San Francisco - Druckenmiller, Jim
27 Carolina - Carruth, Rae
28 Denver - Pryce, Trevor
29 New England - Canty, Chris
30 Green Bay - Verba, Ross
32 Atlanta - Nathan Davis DE

This was a bad draft for everyone in the NFL. Pryce and Verba would
have been better picks, but even the next DE taken, Davis, sucked it
up in the NFL. Though, if you're going to waste a draft pick, they
should have just taken Rae Carruth. The second round saw James
Darling, who was average at best. The third round brought in Duce,
great pick. And Damien Robison came in the fourth round, who as far
as I can tell started the season with Tampa Bay. A good pick in the
fifth round with Ndukwe Kalu, everyone's favorite non-Green Bay
Nigerian, even if he had to go to DC to figure out what it meant to
play in the NFL. Koy Detmer came in round seven…
(Duce saved this draft, since the first two picks were wasted picks.
Kalu was an good pick up, and sorry I can't get too excited about
third string QBs in the 7th round.)

11 – Tra Thomas -- T

12 Atlanta - Brooking, Keith
13 Cincinnati - Spikes, Takeo
14 Carolina - Peter, Jason
15 Seattle - Simmons, Anthony
16 Tennessee - Dyson, Kevin
27 KC - Riley, Victor – T

Rule of thumb, if the Bears are picking in front of you along with the
Cardinals, things are looking good for. Case and point, the 1998
draft when the two Chicago teams (in the 1940s) draft Andre Wadsworth
and Curtis (P)Enis and #3 and 5. Of course this was also the draft
when everyone passed on Moss too. But Thomas was a great pick,
especially considering that Riley was the next OT taken and the five
guys following Tra are average players (besides Takeo). I'm not sure
what happened to the Birds second round pick, but they got Trotter and
Allen Rossum in round three. Yeah, Rossum moved on, but Trotter has
been a key to the Birds run of four straight NFC Championship games
(besides (2003 which was actually played in 2004)). In round four
Brandon Whiting was picked up, another nice choice. Clarence Love
anyone? He moved on pretty quickly. Round five was Ike Reese time
(is his real name Ike or Dwight? I've always wondered).
(okay they didn't get a superstar, but they drafted five guys who are
in the league today (and I think Love may be too). Great draft.)

#2 Donovan McNabb

3 Cincinnati - Smith, Akili
4 Indianapolis - James, Edgerrin
5 New Orleans - Williams, Ricky
6 St. Louis - Holt, Torry
7 Washington - Bailey, Champ

This draft could have been a disaster. Akili Smith went right after
Donovan and the fans wanted Ricky Williams. The Birds got the best
player in the first round (sorry Jim but Luke Petitgout is not better
than Donovan despite him being the last ND player ever to be drafted
in the first round, I'm not sure if I just made that up which is sort
of sad). Second round saw Barry Gardner (keeping with the Chicago
theme). The third round saw them pick up Doug Brzezinski (Jesuit
baby!) who started all 16 games in '99 and then was a back up until
moving on (and when I googled his last name only I got a much of Cold
War links). The 4th Round saw John Welbourn coming to Philly.
Welbourn was a good pick until Fat Andy didn't give him a new
contract, then they traded him for some mid round picks (Thomas
Tapeh). Damon Moore also came in the 4th round, and he ended up
playing for the Bears in 2002 and hasn't been seen since. A few picks
later Na Brown who really was only cool because his name is Na. Cecil
Martin was a sixth round pick, and a very good pick value wise.
So this drafted didn't have as many players as 1998, but still McNabb
and then Welbourn and even Gardner were all good to great picks.

#6 Corey Simon

7 Arizona - Jones, Thomas
8 Pittsburgh - Burress, Plaxico
9 Chicago - Urlacher, Brian
10 Baltimore - Taylor, Travis
11 N.Y. Giants - Dayne, Ron

Okay so they missed out on Urlacher (overrated or not, name me a
better MLB than Urlacher who isn't named Ray Lewis?), but Simon was a
great pick and to be honest probably should have won Defensive rookie
of the year that year. Plus since they had Trotter, Simon made more
sense. Also remember Urlacher fell to the Bears who wanted both
Thomas Jones and Plaxico… but this is the Birds. In the second round
Todd Pinkston came… way too high to draft a girl. Bobbie Williams
came at the end of the second round, he started 11 games in 2003, but
other than that was just a back up. Gari Scott in round four? Thomas
Hamner a RB in the 6th? Seventh round pick John Romero did yield this
laugh and website http://www.johnromero.com/
Simon saved this draft. I'm not sure who the next best player drafted
was, maybe Williams, but a back up O-lineman in the second round who's
no longer with the team? And sorry, but Pinkston sucks.

# 25 Freddie Mitchell

26 Miami - Fletcher, Jamar
27 Minnesota - Bennett, Michael
28 Oakland - Gibson, Derrick
29 St. Louis - Pickett, Ryan
30 Indianapolis - Wayne, Reggie

Another draft rule of thumb, if you've got two guys who are about the
same but one went to college at Miami and the other went to any other
NCAA school… pick the guy from Miami. Reggie Wayne going #30 really
hurts in retrospect. Bennett wouldn't have been a bad pick even
though he's hurt a lot, he's a Sconie. In round two Quinton Caver,
who lasted one year in Philly. Derrick Burgess came with the first
pick of the third round, nice pick up even though he's moving on now.
Correll Buckhalter was a more than solid 4th round pick, too bad he
always seems hurt (Haggerty loves/loved this guy btw). Tony Stewart
lasted a year but is still in the league. They also got A.J. Feeley
in the 5th, and turned him into a 2nd round pick this year (#34 IIRC).
Okay, they bombed the first two picks, but they recovered nicely with
Burgess, Buckhalter, and Feeley (and only really because he became a
second round pick).

#26 Lito Sheppard

27 San Francisco - Rumph, Mike
28 Seattle - Stevens, Jerramy
29 Chicago - Colombo, Marc
30 Pittsburgh - Simmons, Kendall
31 St. Louis - Thomas, Robert

I know I just said if it's between a guy from Miami and a guy from any
other NCAA school take the guy from Miami, well I lied since Lito is
about a million times better than Rumph. Round two brought Michael
Lewis and Sheldon Brown, hey look! The Birds just build a very good
secondary in one draft! Westbrook in round three was a steal. So
what Scott Peters was a bust in round four. This was a great draft.
This was a lot like the 1998 draft. They could have used a receiver,
but there really wasn't anyone worth it when the Birds were drafting
(Josh Reed maybe? Deion Branch?)

#15 Jerome McDougle

16 Pittsburgh - Troy Polamalu
17 Arizona - Bryant Johnson
18 Arizona - Calvin Pace
19 Baltimore - Kyle Boller
20 Denver - George Foster

The Birds moved up for McDougle (who I guess they "hoping he is a
super-Dwight Freeney type"). This hasn't worked out too well. At the
same time, does any of those five picks that followed inspire anyone?
Polamalu does, but they didn't need a safty. Pace is a D-end, but his
5.5 career sacks aren't much better than McDougle's 2, but then again
he doesn't have an irregular heartbeat. (Jim will be happy to know
that Jeff Faine was drafted in the first round here, thus we don't
have to worry about Luke being the last ND player drafted in the first
round). L.J. Smith in the second round seems like a bit of a stretch,
but at least he plays. The 3rd round saw them pick up, who? Huh?
Wilbur "Billy" McMullen Jr.? Jose Cruz the IV wasn't in this draft I
take it? The fifth round pick they traded to GB was Hunter
Hillenmeyer who is now an okay back up for the Bears. Really nothing
in the late rounds.
After such a good draft in 2002, this draft is going to hurt down the
road. The only player that really plays is Smith, and he isn't
anything to write home about.

It's too early to really look at either the 2003 draft, but I did and
it's WAY too early to look at the 2004 draft so I won't even bother.
Hope you enjoyed this and aren't too worried about that 2003 draft
yielding nothing.

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