Kiper’s Two-Round NFL Mock Draft: Eagles Take OSU WR Chris Olave
The wide receiver room behind DeVonta Smith could use some work for the Philadelphia Eagles.
The Eagles have tried to add a veteran wide out through trades and free agency, but other than adding Zach Pascal, have come up empty and while veterans remain on the market, the NFL Draft could be the avenue for the Eagles’ with either pick No. 15 or 18 or even at pick 51 in the second-round.
In his most recent two-round mock draft, ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. sees general manager Howie Roseman targeting Ohio State wide receiver Chris Olave with pick No. 15.
After last week's trade with the Saints, the Eagles now have one fewer first-round pick, but you have to think they'll take a receiver with one of them, right? If they're committed to using 2022 as an evaluation year for Jalen Hurts, the best way they can evaluate him is to give him the tools to succeed. Olave had seven touchdowns out of the slot last season, but he can move outside, too, and use his 4.39 40 speed to get open. Hurts would love throwing to him and DeVonta Smith, with Dallas Goedert working the middle of the field.
Olave, who has built his stock as a deep threat with 4.39 40-time speed and as an excellent route runner.
He recorded 936 yards and 13 scores as a senior.
Besides Smith the Eagles wide receiver room returns third-year pros Jalen Reagor and Quez Watkins, along with free agent addition Paschal, J.J. Arcegaw-Whiteside, Greg Ward and John Hightower.
Next with pick No. 18, Kiper sees the Eagles landing Georgia linebacker Nakobe Dean.
I see a massive void in the middle of the Eagles' front seven, and we're getting to the point in this draft in which an off-ball linebacker will be taken. I have Devin Lloyd just ahead of Dean in my rankings, but there are teams that will fall in love with Dean's intangibles. He's a tremendous teammate who was the leader of the national champs' historic defense. He's a little undersized, but he can play sideline to sideline.
When looking at the Eagles defense, they still could use that playmaking linebacker that can go from sideline to sideline.
Dean is a versatile linebacker, who can be an explosive blitzer and cover tight ends and at the second level.
He won the Butkus Award, as the country's best linebacker, making 72 total tackles, 10.5 for loss, six sacks, two picks, five passes defensed and two forced fumbles for the Bulldogs.
In Round 2, the Eagles add more defensive talent, taking USC edge rusher Drake Jackson.
There was a time when I thought Jackson might be a top-10 pick, but he never quite put everything together for the Trojans. Still, NFL teams will see his size (6-foot-3, 254 pounds) and physical traits and think they can coach him to hit his ceiling. For the Eagles, Jackson might be a situational pass-rusher at first while he develops his game. Edge rush is a clear need for Philly.
The 6-3, 254 pound Jackson registered a career-high six sacks, adding 26 quarterback pressures and 29 tackles and has 69 quarterback pressures and 13 career for the Trojans.
The NFL Draft begins on Thursday April 28 through Saturday April 30th.