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Saturday, March 6, 2021

Easy Pickings: Birds' Best and Worst Draft Picks

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Kevin Noonan
Kevin Noonan
Kevin Noonan has covered and commented on the Delaware sports scene for more than 30 years, everything from amateur recreation leagues and high schools to local colleges and the Philadelphia professional teams. He’s been voted Delaware Sportswriter of the Year multiple times and currently covers the Philadelphia Eagles for CBSSports.com and teaches creative writing courses at Wilmington University.

In case ESPN hasn’t already pounded it into your brain, the NFL will hold its draft of college players next Thursday through Saturday, an annual event that has become an overhyped media circus, not to mention a cottage industry for thousands of Mel Kiper wannabes.

We’ll talk next week about what the Eagles should do with their draft picks, but before that we’re going to take a look back at the best and worst draft picks in Eagles history, a totally subjective exercise that took almost five minutes of research.

The best picks are rated according to when they were selected – there were first-round picks who were supposed to become All-Pros and there were lower-round picks who were barely expected to make the roster, but they all became some of the greatest Eagles of all time. So, we’ve broken that down into categories – first round, second round, third round and fourth round and lower.

The worst picks have to be first-round selections simply because it’s impossible to be a seventh-round bust. And the higher the overall selection, the higher the expectations.

So, here is one person’s look, at inverse order, at the good, the bad and the ugly of the Eagles’ draft history.

The Best

First round

5. WR Mike Quick, North Carolina, 1982

4. QB Donovan McNabb, Syracuse, 1999

3. DE Reggie White, Tennessee, 1984 (supplemental draft)

2. C Chuck Bednarik, Penn, 1949

1. RB Steve Van Buren, Louisiana State, 1944

Second round

5. C Guy Morriss, Texas Christian, 1973

4. CB Eric Allen, Arizona State, 1988

3. RB LeSean McCoy, Pittsburgh, 2009

2. QB Randall Cuningham, Nevada-Las Vegas, 1985

1. S Brian Dawkins, Clemson, 1996

Third round

5. WR Fred Barnett, Arkansas State, 1990

4. S Randy Logan, Michigan, 1973

3. RB Brian Westbrook, Villanova, 2002

2. S Bill Bradley, Texas, 1969

1. WR Tommy McDonald, Oklahoma, 1957

Fourth round or lower

5. DE Clyde Simmons, Western Carolina, 9th round, 1986

4. LB Seth Joyner, Texas-El Paso, 8th round, 1986

3. E Pete Pihos, Indiana, 5th round, 1945

2. WR Harold Carmichael, Southern, 7th round, 1971

1. RB Wilbert Montgomery, Abilene Christian, 6th round, 1977

The 10 Worst

10. DE Mike Mamula, Boston College, 1995

9. OT Bernard Williams, Georgia, 1994

8. OG Danny Watkins, Baylor, 2011

7. DE Jerome McDougle, Miami, 2003

6. DE Richard Harris, Grambling, 1971

5. RB LeRoy Keyes, Purdue, 1969

4. WR Kenny Jackson, Penn State, 1984

3. Jay Berwanger, HB, Chicago, 1936

2. DE Randy Beisler, Indiana, 1966

1. OT Kevin Allen, Indiana, 1985

Contact Kevin Noonan at knoonan32@aol.com.

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