Philly Native Mike McGlinchey likely Out of Eagles’ Reach
(973espn.com) - At 6-foot-8, former Notre Dame left tackle Mike McGlinchey has quite the reach but it's probably not long enough to get back to Philadelphia.
Currently, without a second- or third-round pick in April's draft, conventional wisdom says if the Super Bowl champion Eagles are going to be moving from No. 32 overall it will be in a downward trajectory to accrue more picks.
It's not quite that simple, however.
"If there’s a guy we have rated as a difference-maker — we will never have 32 guys in our first round (guys with first-round grades). But if there’s a guy there that we feel can make a difference and is a first round talent, we won’t hesitate to take that guy," executive vice president of football operations Howie Roseman said earlier this week at the NFL Scouting Combine. "If we have a bunch of guys with similar grades, we would look to move back. Same thing if we have a bunch of guys with lesser grades."
McGlinchey, a Philly native who attended William Penn before turning into an All-American with the Fighting Irish, almost surely fits Roseman's definition as a difference-maker with a first-round grade.
Yet there are conflicting graded on the rangy left tackle. A quick, unscientific study of the log-jam of meaningless mock drafts polluting the web have McGlinchey going as high as the top-15 or dropping a bit to the late first round.
It was always going to be unlikely that perhaps the best left tackle in the draft would last to the final spot in the first round and that scenario took a massive hit when McGlinchey was able to put up 225 pounds 29 times despite his lengthy arms. Even acceptable athleticism will put the Eagles' chances of landing him to bed but McGlinchey couldn't help but wonder about returning to his hometown for a Super Bowl champion.
"You know, playing for any team in the NFL is a dream come true," McGlinchey said when asked about the Eagles. "Obviously as strong as my ties are in the city of Philadelphia and around the area, that would be a dream come true situation. Super Bowl champs, you know, passionate city, everything I do, everybody I love is back at home in Philadelphia so if any team would pick me that would be great, but it would be pretty special to go home too."
The Eagles are doing their due diligence at the combine and quickly interviewed McGlinchey on Tuesday, another portion of the week the big man is handling very well.
"He's knocking it out of the park," an NFL source told 973espn.com when discussing a number of McGlinchey interviews, hardly a surprise because he spent five years at Notre Dame, finishing his career as a team captain on the best offensive left side in the country next to potential top-10 pick Quenton Nelson.
"You’re probably not going to get a better teammate," McGlinchey said of Nelson, perhaps the best player in this draft class. "He’s a phenomenal player, phenomenal person. Cares as much as anybody in the building, works as hard as anybody in the building and when he gets into the meeting room when he steps across those white lines, he’s a different animal."
McGlinchey was able to give a bit of a look behind the curtain when it comes to the Eagles and how they handle interviews with potential draftees.
"We were just talking ball," he said. "I was with [offensive line] coach [Jeff} Stoutland quite a bit. Went over a lot of film. He gets eccentric sometimes, and it was really cool for me to sit in there and let him get as intense as he gets trying to coach me and learn things."
According to NFL Network Draft analyst Mike Mayock going seamlessly from a Hall of Fame talent like Jason Peters into a 6-foot-8, 320-pound prospect with the upside of McGlinchey is pie-in-the-sky for the Eagles.
"He’s going to be ready to play," Mayock, who has rated McGlinchey as the best OT tackle in the draft, said. "I don’t care if you put him at right tackle or left tackle, he’s going to be ready to play. And, number two, his work ethic and passion for the game of football is unparalleled. So I know what I’m getting with that kid, and that’s why I bang the table for him.”
A table Stoutland will bang into the floor if McGlinchey starts to slip on April 26.
"This is a cool experience for us out here, we’re around some of the best and brightest minds in football for the next week or so and I get to talk to all these people, which is so cool to me," McGlinchey said. "I’m trying to do my best to present myself in a way that is enticing for teams to pick me. But at the same time, I’m trying to learn a lot of things as well and pick these coaches’ brains that have been in and around football for so long and are so well-respected."
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen