Eagles 2022 NFL Draft 1st Round Big Board

With the offseason in full swing, free agency is actually less than a month away. Then before you know it, we will all be sweating out the first round hoping Howie Roseman replicates his 2021 draft.

I know Free Agency is more than a month before the draft, but I just love talking about draft season. It's just such a cool concept to me that a team like the Eagles can completely reshape their future over an hour period on a night in late April.

Since it'll probably be another week or so until I release mock draft 3.0, I thought the next best thing was to release my ranking of players for the Eagles picks at 15/16/19. To be clear, this is realistic options only... so don't expect to see Aidan Hutchinson and Kayvon Thibodeaux anywhere near this list.

1. LB Devin Lloyd, Utah

Credit: Utah Athletics

I've said it in both my mock drafts and I'll say it again now, this just makes too much sense to me. Lloyd is the clear LB1 in this years draft based off his incredible athleticism and acceleration all over the field. Even in a defense as stale as Jonathan Gannon's is, Lloyd would stand out clearly if he was inserted into a starting role this upcoming season. TJ Edwards has earned a role of some capacity next season, but everyone else is either there because of fit or the lack of resources the Eagles put into that position group every year. It's time to change that, because if Lloyd is available at 15, I believe he can be a generational talent and someone who will be in this league for the next decade. I know, it's high praise, but like I said in my first mock I think Lloyd might be one of my favorite prospects ever. 1979 was the last time the Eagles selected a linebacker in the first round, and this has to be the first time since then.

2. CB Derek Stingley Jr., LSU/CB Ahmad "Sauce" Gardner, Cincinnati

Credit: Bleacher Report

I think the best way to rank these two was like this for a couple reasons. Mainly, they are so close that I honestly don't feel confident ranking one over the other. Also, there is a decent chance that both are long gone by this pick, so take this with a grain of salt. If you have any chance to take ether of these guys however, it would be an absolute homerun pick for a secondary that isn't exactly getting younger. Sure, Darius Slay played like a top 5 corner last season but he's 31 and will be a free agent in two years. Steven Nelson is a free agent and will most likely be demanding more money than he did last offseason. So let's inject some youth into the secondary, where Stingley and Gardner are both outstanding in their own ways. Stingley feels like the bigger upside pick, since he was a sure top 5 pick before he got injured and didn't get to play a full season last year. Gardner a guy who has shot up on draft boards over the past few months, some having him go as high as #6 in mock drafts(Todd McShay). We can debate who is better all we want, but both guys are going to be #1 corners in this league and if the Eagles could get one at 15 that would be very good value.

4. C Tyler Linderbaum, Iowa

Credit: The Gazette

I'm guessing this will be the most controversial ranking of this whole list. I know that there is a very good chance that Jason Kelce will come back; frankly I believe he'll be announcing a return to Philly pretty soon. But next season would surely be his last season, and when you can draft his potential succesor for the next 2 decades I think it's worth it. Sure, he'd probably only be emergency depth in his first season, but when you have 3 first round picks you can afford to do something like this with one of them. I wouldn't usually take a center in the first round in any circumstance, but Linderbaum is a definite exception to that. If Kelce doesnt return, I'd even consider ranking him #2 on this list.

5. EDGE David Ojabo, Michigan

Credit: NFL Mock Draft

I don't think I need to tell anyone that edge rusher is a massive need for the Eagles with Derek Barnett leaving and Brandon Graham coming off a torn ACL. Let's get someone so that Graham can slowly ease back into action. Ojabo definitely got overshadowed by potential #1 pick Aidan Hutchinson rushing in the same defense as him, but that doesn't mean the kid is any less explosive. Ojabo has kind of been all over the place in mock drafts due to his risky upside, but I think there is a decent chance he would be available for all 3 of the Eagles first round picks. People have to remember that the picks between 16 and 19 belong to the Chargers/Saints, teams that have pretty different needs than the Eagles.

6. EDGE Jermaine Johnson, Florida State

Credit: Orlando Sentenial

Johnson may not have been a guaranteed first round pick heading into Senior Bowl week, but leaving he now becomes one of the most intriguing prospects in the entire draft. He truly showed out all week in Mobile and now finds himself projected around the 15-20 range. I think's he's got a wicked first step and would maybe be drafted even higher in some drafts with a less-deep edge rusher class. Ditto everything above about the need for an edge rusher.

7. WR Drake London, USC

This might be boarderline out of the Eagles range, but I thought I'd put him on here anyway. If the Eagles decide to not sign a veteran wideout in Free Agency(which I would prefer, to be clear), then they are going to need to draft a guy with a skillset that London has. London was having a record breaking season with USC before he got injured and missed the remainder of the season. That shouldn't hurt his stock too hard though. Yeah, I get the whole Pac-12 wide receiver narrative in Philadelphia, but I can almost assure you that London will not be another JJ Arcega-Whiteside.

8. WR Treylon Burks, Arkansas

Not much to add here since Burks and London are very similar receivers, but what I will say is that Burks is probably a more realistic option to fall to the Eagles picks. I'll just say now that guys like Chris Olave, Garrett Wilson and Jameson Williams are not on this list.. reason being that I believe they are not the type of wideout the Eagles should be looking for. Not that they aren't all great players, but sometimes when you have 3 first round picks you can afford to be picky about those type of things.

9. EDGE Travon Walker, Georgia

The third edge rusher on this list is a guy that I wasn't sold on at first, but now as the process is going on, I think he's growing on me. I think the biggest issue with Walker is that he is being labeled as a tweener, which basically means that teams might struggle on wether to play him at tackle or off the edge. I'm not really worried about that for a couple of reasons, one being that the Eagles are not getting any older at defensive tackle as well, so grabbing another young tackle would not be the worst thing in the world. I think after seeing Milton Williams play both edge and tackle last year, it convinced me that if a guy has the talent then he'll be fine regardless of where you play him.

10. LB Nakobe Dean, Georgia

Credit: UGA Wire

Rounding out the list is the aforementioned Dean. I want to make it clear that I still believe that Dean is a really good player, but I would just have a sour taste in my mouth if the Eagles took him over Lloyd. One thing I thought Dean really needed to work on was his tackling, especially on run defense. So if you balance that with his incredible open field skills, you still get someone that would slot into this defense on Day 1 of training camp and probably be your best linebacker.

Honorable Mentions: WR Jameson Williams, LB Christian Harris, CB Andrew Booth Jr., S/LB Jaquan Brisker

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