ESPN’s Mel Kiper has Eagles Taking DeForest Buckner at No. 8
Many early mock drafts had the Philadelphia Eagles attempting to bolster their offensive line, selecting a tackle or going with talented running back Ezekiel Elliot with the eighth overall pick in this year’s NFL Draft.
With free agency in the rear view, that’s not the case anymore.
In Mel Kiper Jr's most recent mock draft, released on Wednesday, the draft expert has the Eagles looking to the defensive side of the ball with Oregon defensive lineman DeForset Buckner.
A steal at this point, Buckner would look pretty good on a defensive line with Fletcher Cox. Buckner has the ability to really control an offensive lineman and disrupt offenses, and his versatility makes him useful pretty much anywhere.
It is interesting to note that Notre Dame tackle Ronnie Stanley and Michigan State tackle Jake Conklin are both still on the board, only to be picked by Tampa Bay at No. 9 and the Giants at no. 10.
Buckner is 6-foot-7 and weighs 290 pounds. He started on the Ducks defensive line for two years, playing in 54 career games during his four-year stay.
He was the 2015 Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year,.
As Kiper points out, Buckner, who played end in the Ducks 3-4 scheme, isn't a great fit with the Eagles, but notes that he could shift down and play inside in the Eagles 4-3 look. He has a tremendous motor and wingspan that could cause him to be a disruptive force in the middle of the Eagles defense, paired with Fletcher Cox.