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Matt Bowen of National Football Post ranks Eagles’ Brandon Boykin among Top 5 mid-round value picks…

Thanks to Matt Bowen (former NFL safety) for bailing me out today…

I was knocking my head against a wall on a story I was researching about the Cleveland Browns’ version of Eagles Eye... it’s a version of our own Bored called Orange and Brown Report, and it features a guy who fancies himself the voice of reason akin to the leader of our Eagles Bored, the esteemed GK Brizer… but he is a mere imitation who goes by the name Bo Davis, aka “The Menacing Mongrel”…

I ran into problems of permission slips and publication releases…such is life… But I’ll pursue the devil in the details to bring you the story later this week…

The good news is Matt Bowen came to the rescue…

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Matt Bowen is retired from football now but writes a syndicated column for the Chicago Tribune and the National Football Post.com.  He recently added “Livefyre” to his NFP blurbs, too, which is one of the things we have in common, and which means when you log on to his posts you can slide right into the commentary with your current Eagles Eye identity…

Anyway, I was lucky to get this take from Matt Bowen when I realized late last night (A) there was no way I could contact the Cleveland Browns’ GK Bo Davis in time for permission to get that story out last night, and (B) there was no way I was going to torture our readers with Plan B, which was a video diagnostic of how you cover a 9-route in the NFL (aka the red zone “fade”), since the video evidence I had featured one Riley Cooper going up against Tramon Williams in the Eagles-Packers playoff game two seasons ago…

As it turns out, Matt Bowen saved my journalistic life tonight.  He donated this take on the Brandon Boykin pick by the Eagles—

CB/KR/PR Brandon Boykin of Georgia making a saving tackle against Georgia Tech…

Bowen:  “On Monday, I broke down five of the top picks from the NFL Draft that could provide an early impact this season when we talk game plans. However, let’s not forget about the mid-round picks—the value picks—that are scooped up later in the draft. Here are five rookies that should provide depth and play a role in 2012.”

WR Mohamed Sanu—Bengals (No.83): The Bengals had an impressive draft class and Sanu is one of those pospects we should look at. The WR from Rutgers has some size (6-2, 211) and should factor into the game plan with the inside breaking route tree aligning opposite A.J. Green. The key for rookie wide outs with a big frame: learning how to defeat press-coverage. That has to be a top goal for Sanu this summer so he can contribute early as a rookie.

CB Dwight Bentley—Lions (No.85):  During Senior Bowl practices in Mobile, I consistently found myself writing down notes about the Louisiana-Lafayette CB. Good feet, a clean plant and drive, plus solid technique from an off-man position (toughest job for any DB). Bentley wanted to compete daily in Mobile in front of pro scouts. And looking at the depth in the Lions secondary, finding a CB that can come in and push for playing time in the 3rd round brings value. 

RB Lamar Miller—Dolphins (No.97):  Miller was projected to come off the board much earlier, but like every draft, we always see prospects slide. For the Dolphins, finding a RB with Miller’s skill set in the 4th is a solid pickup. The former Hurricane has 4.4 speed, good vision and cut back ability. In every pro backfield, you need multiple ball carriers in a sixteen game season. Like the move from the Dolphins to draft Miller and add more talent to that offense.

NT Alameda Ta’aum—Steelers (No.109): A good find for the Steelers in the 4th round when we talk scheme and defensive front. Ta’amu has the size and ability to eat up double teams and is an ideal fit as a 3-4 NT. The former Washington standout will need some time to develop as a pro, but give the Steelers credit for getting younger at a position that is vital to the success of their defense.

CB Brandon Boykin—Eagles (No.123): I was surprised to see Boykin on the board late in the 4th round. A prospect with return skills, the ability to play press and slide inside as a nickel defender… In Philly, I can see Boykin playing multiple roles in the secondary and having an immediate impact covering kicks. The type of mid-round draft pick that gives you options in the defensive sub packages…

Thanks for that glove save, Mr. Bowen. I really appreciate it. You have put Boykin in some fine company indeed… and I owe you one.

Thomas Jackson

About Thomas Jackson

Jax Sports Media has been reporting on NFL teams in the mid-Atlantic region since 2006. Thomas Jackson is its senior writer. Tom started covering the Philadelphia Eagles for the MVN Network in 2007. In 2009 he joined the Bloguin Network. He now also covers the Baltimore Ravens.

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