The Philadelphia Eagles already swung one trade to shake up the 2021 NFL Draft and with April 29 closing in, another blockbuster deal from general manager Howie Roseman could be on the horizon.
Philadelphia wisely struck a deal with the Miami Dolphins in March, moving down six spots to No. 12 overall and picking up a 2022 first-round pick in the process. It created far more possibilities for who the Eagles might draft as many speculated on which of the top wide receivers and cornerbacks would be available.
With recent NFL Draft rumors painting a clearer picture for how the top-10 picks could unfold, Roseman might find without a ton of variety at No. 12 overall. So, in an offseason that has already been insanely busy, we might see another big move.
According to The Athletic’s Ben Standig, the Eagles are actively exploring trade avenues that would move them back into the top-10 picks.
It would be a bit of a surprise, given Philadelphia traded down just a few weeks ago. But there is a decent argument to be made for the Eagles to make a draft-day trade.
Who will the Eagles draft in 2021?
If the Eagles stay put at No. 12 overall, many of the top pass-catching weapons will be gone. Kyle Pitts, the best tight end prospect in years, is likely being taken fourth by the Atlanta Falcons or at No. 6 by Miami. Additionally, the Eagles reportedly slid down because they are confident the Cincinnati Bengals (No. 5 overall) will draft wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase.
Realistically, the best Philadelphia could hope for is Heisman Trophy winner DeVonta Smith. His former Alabama teammate, Jaylen Waddle, is a popular mock draft selection for the Detroit Lions, Carolina Panthers and New York Giants. So, if Roseman wants that speed in his offense, it will require a trade.
Fortunately, Detroit is more than willing to trade down as it begins a rebuild. Of course, moving up five spots won’t be cheap. The Lions might need the Eagles’ 2021 third-round pick (70th overall), fifth-round selection (150) and a 2022 third-round pick.
The above scenario would allow the Eagles to keep their second-round selections, which are extremely valuable. Roseman might also be more willing to part with those thirds, since he has four first- and second-round picks next year.
If the Eagles stay put, Smith is likely their best option. He’s a very talented player, but NFL teams have legitimate concerns about how a 6-foot-1, 170-pound receiver will translate to the NFL. He could be a playmaker, but the lack of size lowers his potential upside and reduces his potential role in an NFL offense.
One thing is for certain, the Eagles are going to be very busy when the 2021 NFL Draft rolls around. With so many options on the table, Roseman will either set this franchise up nicely for the future or add to his concerning history of draft busts.