Thursday, May 13, 2021
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10 Eagles NFL Draft Trends You Won’t Believe



10 Eagles draft trends you won’t believe originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

The last 1,000-yard receiver the Eagles drafted outside the 3rd round? How about Harold Carmichael in 1971.

The last defensive end the Eagles drafted in the first three rounds with 10 sacks in a season? It’s never happened.

The last Eagles quarterback to win 10 games that the Eagles didn’t draft? How about Ron Jaworski 40 years ago?

The draft always brings out some great historical nuggets.

With the draft set to begin Thursday evening, here are 10 more hard-to-believe Eagles draft trends.

Some of them you won’t want to believe.

FIRST-ROUND TREND: The Eagles have drafted 27 players in the first round since 1991 and 20 of them have been linemen. That includes 11 defensive linemen and nine offensive linemen. The only exceptions have been four WRs, two QBs and one cornerback. That means 24 of their last 27 1st-round picks have been linemen or receivers.

HISTORY SAYS D-LINE: The Eagles have had five picks between 10 and 15 over the last 20 years and they’ve taken a defensive lineman all five times: Jerome McDougle No. 15 in 2003, Brodrick Bunkley No. 14 in 2006, Brandon Graham No. 13 in 2010, Fletcher Cox No. 12 in 2012 and Derek Barnett No. 14 in 2017. Before that they took Bernard Williams No. 14 in 1994 and Tra Thomas No. 11 in 1998. So the last seven players they’ve drafted between 10 and 15 have been linemen. The last non-lineman they took in that range was tight end Keith Jackson at No. 13 in 1988.

SEVEN-YEAR DROUGHT: None of the last 49 players the Eagles have drafted outside the first round have made a Pro Bowl, a streak that goes back to 3rd-round pick Zach Ertz in 2013. 

EIGHT-YEAR DROUGHT: The Eagles have drafted 34 defensive players since their last Pro Bowler, 2012 1st-round pick Fletcher Cox.

15-YEAR DROUGHT: None of the last 65 defensive players the Eagles have drafted outside the first round have made a Pro Bowl. Their last defensive Pro Bowler outside the first round was 5th-round pick Trent Cole in 2005.

THE LAST 1ST-ROUND RUNNING BACK? A lot has been made of the Eagles not drafting a 1st-round linebacker since Jerry Robinson in 1979, the longest streak in the NFL. But they haven’t drafted a 1st-round running back since Keith Byars in 1986, and that’s the second-longest streak. The only team that’s gone longer is Washington, who last drafted a 1st-round running back some 54 years ago – Ray McDonald out of Idaho 13th overall in 1967. He rushed for 223 yards in his career. Two teams – the Packers and Jets – haven’t taken a 1st-round running back since 1990 (Darrell Thompson, Blair Thomas). 

IF AT FIRST YOU DON’T SUCCEED: If the Eagles draft a wide receiver in the first round, they’ll become only the seventh team in NFL history to take a WR in the first round in consecutive years. If they take a WR in either of the first two rounds, they’ll become only the sixth team in NFL history to take a WR in the first or second round three years in a row.

PUT ME IN COACH: The last player the Eagles drafted in the first three rounds that never played a snap in an NFL game was Miami offensive lineman Matt Patchan, their 3rd-round pick in 1988. Their last 2nd-round pick that never played was 1972 2nd-round pick Dan Yochum, an offensive tackle from Syracuse. Their last 1st-round pick that never got into a game was Johnny Bright, the 5th pick in 1952.

HOMEGROWN TALENT: The top six rushers in Eagles history were all Eagles draft picks: LeSean McCoy, Wilbert Montgomery, Brian Westbrook, Steve Van Buren, Duce Staley and Randall Cunningham. The leading rusher in Eagles history not drafted by the Eagles is Ricky Watters, the 49ers’ 2nd-round in 1991. Of the 19 players in Eagles history with 2,000 rushing yards, only four were 1st-round picks (Van Buren, Byars, Clarence Peaks and Donovan McNabb).

TAKE YOUR PICK: The three defensive backs the Eagles drafted in 2002 – Sheldon Brown, Lito Sheppard and Michael Lewis – recorded 46 interceptions in an Eagles uniform. The 31 defensive backs they’ve taken in the 18 drafts since have recorded 49. And only four of them have had more than five (Nate Allen 10, Kurt Coleman, Brandon Boykin and Jordan Hicks 7).

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