With the Eagles failing to make the playoffs this season, they have officially secured pick number six. The Eagles' future is in the hands of the draft as they have a lot of valuable players that are likely to get cut or becoming free agents, but they are replaceable should they draft right, and that’s what I intend to show you guys today. I’ve been scouting for a majority of the season. I’ve been constantly diagnosing film, looking at film, situational plays, and the talent the players possess. With a lot of truly talented players to mark the top of this class, I’ve decided to show some players I think the Eagles should target with their top-two picks.
Round 1 Pick 6: Micah Parsons, LB, Penn State
From Penn State to the Eagles roster, this would be a dream for the thousands of Eagles fans that are Penn State alumni. Parsons, who is one of the best linebackers in college football, would be a top-three pick this year if it weren't for the three top-tier quarterbacks (Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields, Zach Wilson). Parsons at six would be a complete steal and an astounding improvement to a weak linebacker core.
I’ve dove into multiple games of film, and the talent that he brings to every game is what any star linebacker would bring. I made a lot of notes on his game within things I loved, liked, and disliked. After in-depth analysis, this is what I had to say about Parsons.
Micah Parsons is going to have some competition for the top linebacker this year, but as of the start of the season, he has the number one ranked linebacker spot locked up. Parsons is one of the best linebackers I’ve scouted, and he shows a great deal of potential. His athleticism is something that is clearly god-given.
He offers a high level of athleticism at the linebacker position with great play speed, and strength. His play speed allows him to continue moving around throughout the field, and be able to move sideline to sideline in order to continue making plays on the field. As a playmaker with his speed, he also shows strength with his ability to tackle. As one of the most consistent finishers, he shows a great deal of strength in order to face chest up tackles against running backs. He has great strength and speed, but the combination of the two is what allows him to be such a talented standout at the linebacker position. Strength and speed both have their uses in different areas of the game. Parsons' speed translates to his ability to make plays on the field with coverage ability, and his ability to move sideline to sideline. His strength is more translatable to his run-stopping and tackling ability. When regarding linebackers, there are usually different types of linebackers: there are run-stopping linebackers, and then there are coverage linebackers. The difference between a great linebacker and a good linebacker is their ability to do both, Parsons can do both. His weak points aren’t as apparent as most, but he does show plays that his awareness was not great. Parsons is able to recognize plays well and is able to make plays once the ball reaches the second level zone. It’s rare to find a guy as poised as Parsons is as a linebacker. He is a great tackler, and with that being said it's rare to find a guy as good of a tackler as Parsons who doesn't overpursue on his tackles. Even with being a great coverage linebacker, he offers a blitzing upside as well. He shows promise in his awareness and ability to create pressure on the quarterback.
He finished the 2019 season with 5.0 sacks, and given the number of games played in, it's impressive to see that number from a player at his position. He is a great linebacker with a well-rounded game.
Parsons' ceiling could allow him to become one of the best hybrid linebackers in the game. The acquisition of Parsons to the Eagles would be a dream come true, and for Eagles fans, they should be asking the Eagles organization to trade up if need be to acquire Parsons.
Round 2 Pick 37: Trevon Moehrig, S, TCU
Moehrig would be a huge get for the Eagles secondary that has been severely depleted since the departure of Malcolm Jenkins. Outside of Darius Slay, the Eagles secondary struggled in 2020 due to their lack of talent. Slay offers a lot of expertise and veteran leadership moving forward, but he needs more reinforcements by his side.
The TCU defensive back shows the ability to play as an aggressive safety with his quick-hitting instincts. His game shows a lot of strengths, but what he does best is get to the ball quickly on underneath routes and finish the plays off. With great athleticism, he shows the ability to play in a position similar to what Antoine Winfield Jr. is playing with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He displays the ability to play well in the slot cornerback position as well. He doesn’t have the best ability to play and cover in zone, but his man coverage skills are shown to be very good.
Moehrig does have some parts of his game he needs to improve upon. When he was in zone coverage as a high safety, he struggled to find the ball and struggled in open-field tackling. He is a very aggressive player when in the box, but because of his hesitation when it comes to the open-field, he often gets beat (which is a big knock I have on him). With great speed, strength, and man coverage ability, you can’t teach the traits that he carries. Everything else about his game that is currently lacking is coachable/fixable. There is a lot of upside to his game that could allow him to become a very reliable safety given they use him in proper coverages.
In year one I don’t expect him to carry a very big role on the defense given some of the holes in his game. I expect year one that he'll carry a role in simpler coverage schemes such as cover one, and cover two, but he could also be a big factor when playing in blitz packages as well.
The Eagles are lacking skill and depth throughout their roster, but getting two players with the strengths and ceilings that Parsons and Moehrig possess would drastically improve the defense.