I don’t really see it. I have a hard enough time believing the Eagles will stand pat and stay at #15 in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft.
But if they do, SB Nation Philly.com has a new favorite to plug in to the mix in the 1st round—a Strong Safety from Alabama by the name of Mark Barron…
Mark Barron, safety, 6-2, 218, Alabama…Alabama SS Mark Barron ran forty times of 4.54 and 4.73 at the Crimson Tide’s Pro Day on Thursday.The good news is he’s healthy enough to run relatively long distances at full speed after postseason double hernia surgery. The bad news is Barron got off to a “dreadful start” on his second forty-yard dash, resulting in the 4.73. The two-time first-team All-American projects as a borderline first-round pick.
When I see sudden changes in mock direction by guys at SB Nation who should know better, I defer to the Gold Standard. In an information-overload scenario, I trust the Eagles front office will sort all this out.
All of a sudden, Jay King of SB Nation has a man-crush on Mark Barron. I don’t get it, but here’s Jay King’s analysis:
at No. 15…. Philadelphia Eagles, Mark Barron, S, Alabama
“The Eagles do have last year’s second-round pick, Jaiquawan Jarrett, but early returns were not good on Jarrett. Mark Barron is a blue chip talent. He can step in and play at a high level right away, giving the Eagles an instant upgrade that fixes a real problem spot from last year.”
(Maybe I’m crazy, but that sounds so simplistic as to defy logic and common sense…
No strong safety prospect has ever become an “instant upgrade”…)
Now I defer to Tommy Lawlor’s recent “Mach 9” picks for the Eagles. Lawlor is not smitten with Mark Barron in the least. He left Barron off the list completely:
1 – LB Luke Kuechly – Boston College – 6-3, 243
2 – CB Brandon Boykin – Georgia – 5-9, 183
2 – WR Mohamed Sanu – Rutgers – 6-2, 211
3 – DT Derek Wolfe – Cincinnati – 6-5, 295
4 – DE Bruce Irvin – West Virginia – 6-3, 245
5 – LB Tank Carder – TCU – 6-2, 236
6 – OT Tom Compton – South Dakota – 6-5, 314
6 – OT Jeff Adams – Columbia – 6-6, 308
6 – WR Keshawn Martin – Michigan State – 6-0, 188
Lawlor: “Now let’s talk about the #1 pick. I would draft Kuechly to play SAM. Last night I re-watched a couple of his games. I then watched some of the Eagles season finale to see Akeem Jordan in action. I wanted to try and imagine Kuechly in the Eagles scheme and playing SAM. I think Kuechly would be a fine addition. He would also be a good insurance policy for the middle. If something happens to Ryans, you hate to turn around and have Jamar Chaney and Casey Matthews once again as the men in the middle.”
“Eagles linebacker coach Mike Caldwell ran the drills at Boston College’s recent pro day. That should tell you that the team has serious interest in Kuechly. Would the Eagles invest a first round pick in him, even after the Ryans deal? That is the tricky part. This would be a serious shift in the Eagles actions. I know many people would say this is virtually an impossible scenario to believe, but I think taking a linebacker in the first round is possible this year.”
“That is still an area of need for the Eagles. Kuechly is good value in the middle of the first round. He’s also the kind of player that Reid and Howie Roseman have talked about in recent years. Kuechly is a leader. He is a good student and great player. There is nothing close to a character concern with him. This is absolutely a guy you want on your team on Sundays and representing your organization off the field the rest of the week.”
Hmmmm. Okay. I’m listening to ya, Tommy. I still think the Eagles FO will surprise us with that 1st Round pick, even if it means trading it up or down… but you have made a good argument for Kuechly… or at least a far better argument than Jay King made for Mark Barron…