NFL rumors: Eagles plan to draft a running back

The NFL draft is less than three weeks away, which means there is not a lot of time left to pontificate about the Eagles draft strategies.

As is known, the Eagles want to get more picks — preferably on the second day. The Birds have a first rounder (32 overall), and then nothing until the fourth round. It would make sense for Philly and Howie Roseman to relent the 32nd overall pick if it can net them a pair of selections on the second day in rounds two and three.

There may be a strategical reason to do this. Not only gathering more picks, but targeting particular players may be reason enough for the Birds to manuver backwards in the draft.

ESPN’s Tim McManus examined this briefly in a recent column, noting that there are a bunch of backs slated to go early in the second round that would be perfect fits for the Eagles.

Currently, Philly has Corey Clement and Jay Ajayi on the roster as 53-man shoe-ins. The team also still has Wendell Smallwood and Donnel Pumphrey slated to report to training camp. There is speculation that Darren Sproles could return, but even so, they are short of the four-man running back corps that helped fuel their Super Bowl run.

Adding one of the second round projected backs makes sense, and LSU’s Derrius Guice, USC’s Ronald Jones and SDSU’s Rashaad Penny are good fits in that slot.

Recently Metro projected that the Eagles might try and snag Guice at 32. But if they can still get him a few picks later and also pad their asset haul, it’s a good move. According to most draft boards, the Eagles’ other needs don’t really fit into their current slotted pick — as there is a big divide in offensive line talent that may force the Eagles to address that area later. A running back early in the second round looks to be the leading theory.


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