What the Nelson Agholor pick means for the Eagles moving forward

The first round of the 2015 NFL Draft passed without very many exciting or surprising twists. There were only two trades and the Eagles weren’t part of either. They decided to stick it out and pick No. 20, where they were originally slated. They decided to go with USC WR Nelson Agholor, a player who should immediately make an impact on a team with a thin wide receiver group. But what does this pick mean for the rest of the draft and their team?

First of all, it means the obvious: the Eagles did not get Oregon QB Marcus Mariota. There were rumors that Chip Kelly offered Tennessee a massive trade package for the No. 2 pick, including multiple first round picks and players. That turned out to be just a rumor. The Titans received no offer close to the rumored one going around, and it’s not even clear at this point what they would have asked for the deal to go through. Is it possible that the Titans just weren’t interested in trading the pick, or did Kelly not offer as much as people thought he would? The most reputable report says he didn’t offer any players, which was confirmed by Kelly himself last night. Some people still don’t believe him, but I honestly think they didn’t offer anything close to what the Titans would’ve been interested in.

So the Eagles didn’t get their “savior”…so what. There’s no way to guarantee that he’d even have a successful career, and in the end, the price was just too high. Kelly remained rational and stayed put in the draft, maintaining his roster and draft picks. If he never even made an offer, there would be room for criticism, but it seems like the Titans just weren’t really interested in moving down.

As for the actual pick, the Eagles took a wide receiver in a WR-heavy first round. The draft is very deep at the position, and some very talented players at that position are still available at the end of the first round. I think the Eagles probably could’ve waited until the second round again to take a WR, but in the end, Agholor is still a very good player and could easily be a starter from day one.

It’s hard to make a judgment already on how good he’ll be, but I have a hard time believing he’ll be any worse than Riley Cooper, who will hopefully be the odd man out in the current WR group. They also have Jordan Matthews and Josh Huff, as well as Miles Austin and Seyi Ajirotutu. That’s not the greatest group of receivers, but there are certainly teams out there with a worse group. If Kelly wants to keep Matthews in the slot, I see Agholor being on the outside along with a mixture of Huff and Cooper. That’s a solid trio of young receivers they have now.

Is wide receiver no longer a need now? Probably, although I think they could still add a guy in the sixth or seventh round if they want. It was a clear positional need and I’m glad to see they were interested in filling it quickly. Now, they still have many other positions to fill today in day two.

Cornerback, safety and guard are all still positions that could use not only depth, but an actual starter. It’s hard to draft a defensive back and start him immediately, especially cornerback, and there have already been a lot of them picked. Only one and a half safeties (Shaq Thompson counts as the half) have been taken so far, so there are still guys they could take. But the group is so thin that it may not be worth taking anyone before the fourth round.

Guard isn’t a huge pressing need, but it’d be nice to see them get one in the next few rounds to at least compete with Allen Barbre for the right guard position. Also, if Evan Mathis gets traded, then they’ll definitely need someone at that position. It’s really yet to be seen if Kelly is actually going to trade all these Reid era players that have been rumored to be on the trading block, but especially if Mathis is gone, they’ll need to fill his position immediately with a player from the draft.

Cornerback still remains a need, and I wouldn’t rule out them trading up to get someone like Eric Rowe or Jalen Collins. Both guys would be a nice young prospect to mix in with who the Eagles currently have at the position. As with Mathis, it’s possible that Brandon Boykin could be on his way out, so it may be good to get someone to compete with the other guys on the roster for the other starting job.


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