The Eagles are in a retooling position for this year's draft rather than a full rebuild. After what the team witnessed this season, they should realize that they need to get younger at some key positions. Thankfully the Eagles already have a few positions locked down like defensive tackle, quarterback, running back, right tackle, right guard, and left tackle. Other positions that have some good players but need some depth and prospects are defensive end, left guard, and safety. I think everyone is in agreement that the positions the team desperately needs to address in the draft are linebacker, wide receiver, and cornerback.
In this article, we are going to look at a few targets the Eagles could draft early in this year's draft to help fill the holes at linebacker, wide receiver, or cornerback (which may have to include a trade-up since the Eagles are slotted with the 21st overall pick).
Kenneth Murray | LB | Oklahoma | 6'2 243lbs
The team has been mediocre at linebacker for what feels like forever. That would suddenly change if they decided to pick Murray if he is available at #21. Murray is a beast when playing close to the line of scrimmage, and can even be used as an effective blitzer. This season, Murray racked up 69 solo tackles, 17 tackles for loss, and four sacks for the Sooners. He also tallied four passes defended from the middle of the Oklahoma's defense. One of his negatives while in college was that he was occasionally slow to read and react, but as he matures that is something that could easily become a thing of the past.
Tee Higgins | WR | Clemson | 6'4 216lbs
Higgins is a tall receiver that actually has a little bit of speed, good footwork and tracks deep balls well. Higgins seems like a player the Eagles would like to have, as they like to have a big receiver on the field at all times, but he also brings good speed and can actually get separation unlike Alshon Jeffery and J.J. Acrega-Whiteside. He does have some issues he runs into on the field -- press coverage and lack of focus on shorter routes. If he can clear that up or just improve some on those issues, Higgins would be a solid addition to the 2020 Eagles.
Laviska Shenault Jr. | WR | Colorado | 6'2 220lbs
He can do it all -- slot is not a problem, and he can go deep on the outside. He has perfected anything, but he is good at virtually anything. This is the kind of versatility you want at receiver, although it doesn’t come without his issues. He isn’t the cleanest route runner in the draft, which can cause issues of running slants, posts, corners, or outs as corners will be able to jump all of them. Another issue he has is he doesn’t play very hard off the ball, so not getting blocking downfield and not going fill out when plays break down can hurt. Overall though Shenault Jr. should become a playmaker if the Eagles want to take a chance on him.
Henry Ruggs III | WR | Alabama | 6'0 190lbs
*(Eagles trade up to 10 with Browns by trading 1, 2 and next years 3)*
I know that’s a lot to give up, but Ruggs would be a game changer for this team. He has such break away speed and can go after contested passes, that he would be the perfect #1 for Wentz and this offense. He has game-breaking speed that will allow him to let Eagles to get quick touchdowns, which is something they missed greatly once DeSean Jackson went down in Week 2 this past season. He is absolutely worth the price of trading up for. The only downsides he has is he sometimes struggles with press coverage, and he also isn’t the best route runner. However, his speed will more than make up for his deficiencies.
Kristian Fulton | CB | LSU | 6'0 200lbs
If the Eagles stay put I think this guy should be the pick at 21, and I think he would fit perfectly in Philadelphia. The Eagles like to run man coverage a majority of time, and that is what Fulton excels at. He also has great explosive speed and will not get beat by many speed receivers or guys who run great routes. He is what the Eagles need at the cornerback position due to lacking a true shut down corner. Fulton has the potential to be a shut down corner you can leave on an island at the next level. The only downside is he isn’t the biggest corner, and doesn’t perform well on jump balls, and he gets a little handsy downfield. At the end of the day though this would be a solid pick with a tremendous amount of potential upside.