1 - Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State (6-4, 298); 2 - Mychal Kendricks, LB, California (5-11, 239); 2 - Vinny Curry, DE, Marshall (6-3, 266); 3 - Nick Foles, QB, Arizona (6-5, 243); 4 - Brandon Boykin, CB, Georgia (5-10, 182); 5 - Dennis Kelly, OT, Purdue (6-8, 321); 6 - Marvin McNutt, WR, Iowa (6-3, 216); 6 - Brandon Washington, OG, Miami-Florida (6-3, 320); 7 - Bryce Brown, RB, Kansas State (6-0, 223)
Top Pick Analysis: The Eagles were focused on infusing some quality young pieces on defense and orchestrated two notable trades on the first two days to accomplish that goal. The first involved moving up three spots in the opening round to seize their most coveted prospect in Cox, whose lateral quickness and exceptionally long arms make the fast-rising early entrant an excellent fit as a pass-rushing interior force in the team's Wide Nine alignment. Philadelphia later dealt down in the second round and came away with another pressure- creator in Curry, an energetic and persistent performer who joins a roster that's well-stocked at defensive end, and received an extra fourth-rounder that was used on Boykin. The Eagles also continued their makeover at linebacker with the addition of Kendricks, a short but well-built athlete who displayed great speed and explosion at the combine. Although he's best suited for the middle, the 2011 Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year will likely start out his career competing for a starting role on the strong side. Foles was a bit of surprise in the late third following an uninspiring performance at the Senior Bowl, but sports a strong arm and valued size despite below-average mobility and sometimes spotty accuracy.
Best Value Pick: A deep cornerback pool and durability questions caused the undersized Boykin to fall to the late fourth round, but he's an outstanding athlete with the cover skills and feistiness to be a viable long-term solution out of the slot. His ability as a return man also should aid a team that struggled in that area a year ago.
Questionable Calls: Kendricks was a worthy pick, but his short stature may not be ideal to playing as a SAM linebacker that often has to cover much taller tight ends. Foles had been sliding down draft boards and may have been still available on the third day, while the Eagles didn't bring in an understudy to heavily worked running back LeSean McCoy until taking the underachieving Brown near the end of the event.
Summary: Though Foles was probably a reach and there are some questions about how some of the newcomers will slot in, the Eagles hit a home run with Cox and succeeded in bringing in players that can impact the defense.
FINAL GRADE: B