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Woodrow Call
04-27-2006, 07:38 AM
http://www.zwire.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=16541937&BRD=1675&PAG=461&dept_id=18170&rfi=6

PHILADELPHIA -- With the draft just two days away, the rumors are heating up. The Eagles still want to move into the top 10, where they almost certainly would take a defensive tackle. The quality drops off dramatically after Brodrick Bunkley of Florida State and Hatoli Ngata of Oregon, the top-rated tackles. Neither will drift to 14.

A vertical move would be unlikely to happen until the first day of the draft, according to Eagles general manager Tom Heckert.

"I think it would be more when weíre on the clock, or the day of," Heckert said. "And itís the same way for the teams that are moving down. They donít want to do it until the last second, because they might get something better, which I can understand."

If the price to go up is too steep, the Eagles would be OK selecting offensive tackle Winston Justice, according to sources, should he fall to 14. The competition for Justice most likely would come from the Detroit Lions, who own the ninth pick, and the Arizona Cardinals at 10.

The buzz also is the Eagles could stand pat at 14 and draft a linebacker -- yes, a linebacker -- such as Ernie Sims of Florida State. Although the Eagles obviously need to improve the front seven that struggled to make plays last season, the organization hasnít taken a linebacker off the board in the first round since Jerry Robinson of UCLA arrived at No. 21 overall in 1979.

The Eagles might have another prospect, as well, whom they expect to be on the board if they hang in with the 14th pick. It would be their moment of truth.

"Thatís where you have to weigh whether you take the guy there," Heckert said, "or do you move down, or if you get stuck, are you happy with the guy?"

Sources say the Eagles are prepared to trade down just far enough in the first round to pick up another draft pick and a quality offensive lineman, like center Nick Mangold (6-3, 305) of Ohio State.

Mangold isnít going to sell a lot of Eagles jerseys but he has star qualities. Heís considered a solid technician and a budding leader that could step right in and play well. The Eagles have been unable to hide their interest in Mangold, according to sources.

While Heckert said the Eagles are OK at the center position -- veterans Hank Fraley and Jamaal Jackson are scheduled to battle for the starting job -- itís obvious the coaching staff had serious doubts about the pivot play.

After all, the Eagles were ready to throw a $10 million-plus signing bonus at center-guard LeCharles Bentley on the first day of free agency. Bentley chose the Cleveland Browns.

Bentley would have been a dynamic upgrade for the Eagles and quarterback Donovan McNabb, who have been feeling the heat up the middle since Super Bowl 39.

To get Mangold, sources say the Eagles probably couldnít trade down much further than the 20th spot, owned by the Kansas City Chiefs.

The Chiefs and the Eagles are compatible trade partners. The Chiefs need a cornerback or a safety. The Eagles, at No. 14, would be able to offer K.C. its choice of the top defensive backs.

If Mangold escaped the grasp of the Eagles, linebacker Chad Greenway of Iowa would be a consideration, providing he slides. Heckert has made no secret of his affection for the versatile Greenway, whose stock fell after he ran a 4.79 in the 40-yard dash at the NFL scouting combine.

"I think heís an outside guy but I think he can play both -- strong or weak," Heckert said. "Heís a good player. Heís so smart and so aware and instinctive that he can do all of that stuff. Heís got some size."

The Eagles also are aware their best-laid draft plans could blow up if another teams pulls off a trade.

"Thereís going to be some trades," ESPN Draft Analyst Mel Kiper said Wednesday. "I donít know about a lot. We talked about Philadelphia, if itís the right situation. And Baltimore (No. 13), if Ngataís not there. Chicago, now that theyíve got Ricky Manning Jr. at corner, could move out of (No. 26). Houston might look to move back into the first round needing offensive linemen the way they do. Thereís going to be some activity. Will there be a lot? I donít know how you quantify a lot. But there will be some activity."

There was speculation Wednesday the Eagles were trying to upgrade the wide receiver position with Javon Walker, who before Brett Favre recently delayed his retirement another season, vowed never to play again for the Green Bay Packers.

Sources say the Eagles offered defensive tackle Hollis Thomas and a sixth-round choice -- not enough, it appears, to get the job done.

ESPN reported the Eagles offered the Packers Thomas and guard Artis Hicks, while the Denver Broncos shopped wide receiver AshleyLelie and a sixth-round pick.

The Packers want a first round pick according to CBS SportsLine.

jspchief
04-27-2006, 07:56 AM
I wonder if we could get Huff at #14?

I disagree that Ngata or Bunkley won't be there at #14 though. IMO, one of those guys will make it there and they way Ngata has been dropping, they both might.

htismaqe
04-27-2006, 08:58 AM
At #14, we'd have an outside shut at Huff.

:drool:

jiveturkey
04-27-2006, 09:09 AM
Sweet!

If this happens we would have our pick of Lawson, Williams or possibly Huff.

I was hoping in the back of my mind that we could just get ahead of Dallas and SD.

ChiefsCountry
04-27-2006, 09:16 AM
Huff won't make it past St. Louis.

Mr. Kotter
04-27-2006, 09:17 AM
Sweet!

If this happens we would have our pick of Lawson, Williams or possibly Huff.

I was hoping in the back of my mind that we could just get ahead of Dallas and SD.
I agree with jspchief...one of the DTs will fall to 14. If Philly wants a DT they'll get one of the top two...teams, given a choice between DT and someone else nearly as good but more glamorous (and at a skill position), usually take more glamorous--especially in the top half of the first round.

Mecca
04-27-2006, 09:20 AM
Bunkleys gonna go to the Bills.......then Ngata would have to get by the Browns and Ravens who both covet him....

ct
04-27-2006, 09:25 AM
If the Bills take Ngata, then Lawson just might slide to KC.

eazyb81
04-27-2006, 09:49 AM
Bunkleys gonna go to the Bills.......then Ngata would have to get by the Browns and Ravens who both covet him....

Yep, Bunkley is the perfect DT for the Bills new Cover 2 scheme, and there is no way Romeo Crennel will pass on Ngata if he is available at 12.

I'm really not sure why we would need to trade up to 14, most of the elite defensive players will be gone and we might be reaching a bit if we took Jimmy Williams or Manny Lawson at 14.

Mr. Laz
04-27-2006, 09:52 AM
sorry to break it to ya, but we aren't trading up

the biggest move UP that carl has ever made was like 2/3 spots for tony G iirc.

ct
04-27-2006, 09:55 AM
I agree, we aren't gonna move up.

jspchief
04-27-2006, 10:01 AM
I don't think the Bills are a lock to take a DT. They just invested money in a FA DT this off-season. Drafting another one high just seems like putting a lot of eggs in one basket on a team that has a lot of baskets to fill. I think they'll take Justice, or maybe even Huff.

I also think there's a chance that Baltimore takes Justice if Buffalo passes on him.

BigChiefFan
04-27-2006, 12:36 PM
Ngata may fall to us, but I doubt it.

I can't wait to see how ths shakes out this weekend.

Coogs
04-27-2006, 12:56 PM
Ngata may fall to us, but I doubt it.


And being from Oregon, he would miss most of the summer practices due to still being in college. Then throw in the mandatory hold out to get him signed, and bingo.... a wasted first year.

BigChiefFan
04-27-2006, 01:00 PM
And being from Oregon, he would miss most of the summer practices due to still being in college. Then throw in the mandatory hold out to get him signed, and bingo.... a wasted first year.There is definitely an extra thing to consider by taking him and the oddball rules in place, but Ngata at 20, would be very hard to pass on, IMO.

Tribal Warfare
04-27-2006, 01:05 PM
If this occurs KC is definitely thinking about drafting Lawson

CupidStunt
04-27-2006, 02:06 PM
I also think there's a chance that Baltimore takes Justice if Buffalo passes on him.

Though you think it makes no sense, Baltimore will pass on Justice due to character issues.

As for Ngata? To hell with him. He's just a better Junior Siavii. No telling how much better, but he's just as lazy.