Draft capsules for NFC East teams:
2. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (7-9)
LAST SEASON: Disappointing season ended with Chip Kelly being fired before final game and team missed playoffs for second straight year. Sam Bradford showed enough in second half to get two-year contract extension, but Eagles clearly don’t view him as long-term answer at quarterback or they wouldn’t have traded slew of picks to move up to No. 2. Defensive lineman Fletcher Cox developed into one of best players at his position. Offensive line showed age. Wide receivers were weak. Kelly’s headline-grabbing offseason moves didn’t work and DeMarco Murray, Byron Maxwell and Kiko Alonso were swiftly traded away. New coach Doug Pederson brings familiarity back to organization - he played for Eagles and was assistant under Andy Reid in Philly and Kansas City.
THEY NEED: OT, WR, DB.
THEY DON’T NEED: TE, DL.
POSSIBLE FIRST PICK: QB Carson Wentz, North Dakota State; QB Jared Goff, California.
OUTLOOK: Howie Roseman, who regained personnel power after Kelly was fired, made bold move to put Philadelphia in position to land its first franchise QB since selecting Donovan McNabb at No. 2 in 1999. Roseman moved up from No. 13 to No. 8 by dealing Maxwell and Alonso to Miami, used that pick to get No. 2 spot from Cleveland. Roseman and Pederson have raved about Wentz and Goff. They made it clear they want one of those two QBs and aren’t letting on if they prefer one over other. Los Angeles traded up to get first pick and are expected to take one of them. So, the Eagles will get whoever Rams don’t want. Then they don’t pick again until third round at No. 79. Eagles don’t have a fourth-rounder, but have two fifths, one sixth and two sevenths.
4. DALLAS COWBOYS (4-12)
LAST SEASON: Cowboys went from first to worst in NFC East when Tony Romo missed 12 games with twice-broken left collarbone. Problems went beyond Romo, though. Defense struggled to make game-changing plays, and apparently has moved on after failed experimental season with troubled defensive end Greg Hardy. Defense needs playmakers up front and on back end.
THEY NEED: DE, CB/S, RB, WR.
THEY DON’T NEED: TE, LB, OL, PK.
POSSIBLE FIRST PICK: DE Joey Bosa, Ohio State; RB Ezekiel Elliott, Ohio State; DB Jalen Ramsey, Florida State.
OUTLOOK: Dallas always has lingering question of drafting next quarterback, but unlikely will be as high as this year’s pick. More interesting offensive question is running back, with veteran Darren McFadden as lead back with injury-filled past while coming off one of his most productive seasons. Cowboys seem willing to spend high pick at position after letting 2014 NFL rushing champion DeMarco Murray go in free agency last year.
10. NEW YORK GIANTS (6-10)
LAST SEASON: Missed playoffs for fourth straight season and changed coaches with Ben McAdoo replacing Tom Coughlin. NFL’s worst defense, with six losses either late in fourth quarter or overtime and missing DE Jason Pierre-Paul for half season because of hand mangled in fireworks accident, led to second straight 6-10 record. QB Eli Manning and WR Odell Beckham Jr. had excellent seasons on offense, but there was no second option at wide receiver and running game never got going. LT Ereck Flowers and S Landon Collins had solid rookie years stepping into starting lineup.
THEY NEED: WR, OT, S, LB - keep going. Name it, they need it.
THEY DON’T NEED: QB.
POSSIBLE FIRST PICK: OT Jack Conklin, Michigan State; OT Ronnie Stanley, Notre Dame; WR LaQuon Treadwell, Mississippi; CB Vernon Hargreaves, Florida.
OUTLOOK: GM Jerry Reese scored big in free agency, signing DE Olivier Vernon, DT Damon Harrison, CB Janoris Jenkins and LB Keenan Robinson, and re-signing Pierre-Paul to one-year contract. OT Will Beatty, G Geoff Schwartz and WR Rueben Randle were either released or not re-signed. McAdoo’s West Coast offense needs running game and receiver to play opposite Beckham. Don’t count on Victor Cruz for that role after playing six games in past two seasons because of injuries. Taking offensive tackle and wideout in first two rounds would help, but Reese has always taken best player available regardless of need.
21. WASHINGTON REDSKINS (9-8)
LAST SEASON: Surprisingly emerged to win lackluster NFC East after finishing in last place in six of previous seven years. Found starting quarterback in process, Kirk Cousins. There were all sorts of problems with running game, but second-year coach Jay Gruden picked Cousins late in preseason and QB started all 17 games, including wild-card loss to Green Bay. That earned him one-year deal worth about $19 million under franchise tag; both sides have had no luck agreeing on long-term contract. Other upshot of Cousins’ performance: Robert Griffin III was released. Defense was inconsistent under new coordinator Joe Barry, and series of injuries led to some street free-agent pickups who filled in admirably. Clearly, improvement needed on that side of ball.
THEY NEED: DL, S, ILB, RB, OL, WR.
THEY DON’T NEED: OLB, TE.
POSSIBLE FIRST PICK: DL Jarran Reed, Alabama; DL A’Shawn Robinson, Alabama; DL Sheldon Rankins, Louisville; ILB Reggie Ragland, Alabama.
OUTLOOK: GM Scot McCloughan finally made the sort of big-name, splashy signing that used to be an annual rite for owner Dan Snyder, adding cornerback Josh Norman less than a week before the draft. McCloughan has made clear he loves to build through draft, and he certainly picked up key parts a year ago. Bunch of holes he needs to fill in this draft, particularly on defense, and McCloughan says he would love to add more picks, so using first-rounder as part of trade down is possibility.
AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and AP NFL Twitter feed: https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
Copyright © 2021 The Washington Times, LLC.