Eagles Move Up, Keep ‘Dallas’ from Dallas
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - Talk about a perfect storm.
On a day the Dallas Cowboys found out future Hall of Fame tight end Jason Witten was likely retiring and headed to the "Monday Night Football" booth, the Eagles leapfrogged the 'Boys to snare South Dakota State tight end Dallas Goedert at No. 49 overall.
Philadelphia gave up a fifth-round selection, No. 169 overall, to move up three spots.
Clearly, Howie Roseman's belief was that the Cowboys were going to select Goedert although Dallas quickly floated that was not the case after taking Texas offensive lineman Connor Williams at No. 50 overall.
Goedert is the first tight end drafted by the Eagles since Ertz in 2013 and adds depth at a position that took a hit when Philadelphia released Brent Celek and lost Trey Burton to Chicago in free agency.
The Eagles signed Richard Rodgers and have Billy Brown trying to make the leap from the practice squad to the roster. Deep reserves at TE on the offseason roster include Adam Zaruba and Joshua Perkins but the group is clearly headlined by Ertz and Goedert.
Former Eagles kicker David Akers further trolled the Cowboys fans at AT&T Stadium, when announcing the pick reminding them that Philadelphia is the Super Bowl LII champions and that all the current prospects weren't alive the last time the Cowboys were in the Super Bowl.
"Hey Dallas," Akers screamed, "the last time you were in the Super Bowl, these picks weren't born."
Goedert has similar traits to Eagles Pro Bowl tight end Zach Ertz. At 6-foot-5 and 260 pounds, Goedert has great length and ball skills, dominating a lower level of competition at South Dakota State with two consecutive 1,000-yard seasons.
Eagles executive vice president of football operations Howie Roseman downplayed the Dallas angle, claiming Goedert as among a group of players the Eagles considered at No. 32 overall before trading down.
Scouting chief Joe Douglas pointed to Goedert's dominance at his level in college as well as his ability to translate that at the Senior Bowl and against top-level schools like TCU.
"His size stands out," Douglas said. "We thought that he ran well. Just on the tape, you see a guy that can separate, a guy that can separate at the top of routes and a guy that's going to be a friend to the quarterback."
Douglas also mentioned Goedert's willingness to block even though it's clear the main trait here is his ability as a receiver translating into another matchup weapon for Carson Wentz.
"He’s an incredible quarterback, the best in the NFL," Goedert said when discussing Wentz. "To be able to play with him, that’s going to be a lot of fun."
Wentz, who has the same agent as Goedert, briefly met the tight end when he was in Philadelphia for a top-30 visit.
"Carson has a relationship with [Goedert]," Roseman explained. "He's been around the building kind of telling us about him a little bit. He's excited."
And so is the head coach.
"He's a tremendous player, a tremendous asset," Doug Pederson said. "A weapon for us that I think we can utilize with some of the things you saw last year with Trey Burton and having him on the field as well with Zach. It's exciting to have a pick like this."
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at email@example.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen