The Philadelphia Eagles are still looking to fill a huge void at safety after losing Rodney McLeod. They missed out on several high-profile options in free agency, then chose to ignore the position through the draft’s first four rounds. Will they address safety on Day 3? There are decent options out there.
Verone McKinley III is arguably the best safety still on the board. The Oregon product finished with six interceptions, six pass breakups, and 78 tackles last season in 14 starts. Scouts hyped him as an aggressive player who has a “nose for making plays on the football.” The Eagles will have to hope he falls to Round 5 since they don’t pick until No. 154. They also select at pick No. 237 in Round 7.
Other top safety options include Tycen Anderson (Toldeo), Juanyeh Thomas (Georgia Tech), Delarrin Turner-Yell (Oklahoma), and Smoke Monday (Auburn). Anderson might be the most interesting name of the bunch, a “tight end eraser” who excels on special teams.
Pro Football Network’s James Fragoza wrote: “In any given game, you can see him lined up as a single-high safety, playing man from the slot, coming in as a dime LB/box add-on, or even as an overhang defender. You name it, and Anderson has likely done it in his career. Heck, he even played receiver at the high school level.”
The latest Eagles news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Eagles newsletter here!
Tyrann Mathieu to Philly? Rumors Picking Back Up
Tyrann Mathieu remains available on the open market after “virtually meeting” with the Eagles back on April 7. The All-Pro safety also visited the New Orleans Saints but left without a contract. The former Kansas City Chiefs star has been in “no rush” to find a deal and teams so far have balked at a reported $14.8 million per year.
But Mathieu keeps stoking the flames that he’s about to sign somewhere on social media where everything he posts gets dissected. His latest one: “Long story but trust imma make time for it.” He ended it with a broken heart emoji. Is that a reference to a jilted lover? Or a team turning him down in free agency? Not sure. Either way, Eagles fans flooded Mathieu’s feed with positive thoughts.
Eagles general manager Howie Roseman fueled speculation even more about the team possibly inking Mathieu on Friday night. He didn’t rule out an impending move coming after the draft.
“I think every team is going to have a hole at some spot after this draft,” Roseman said when asked about the Eagles’ secondary. “We have between now and September and hopefully we’re able to add guys.”
Eagles Considered Moving Back in Round 3
Some thought the Eagles might trade back in Round 2 or Round 3 to acquire more picks in the later rounds. Remember, the team surrendered six picks on Day 1 when they unloaded four picks to Houston to move up for Jordan Davis, then traded two more picks to get A.J. Brown.
Philadelphia went into the 2022 draft with 10 total picks and ended up with five. Roseman admitted that he considered moving back in the third round, but the opportunity to select Nakobe Dean was too good to pass up.
“We had more opportunities in the third round to move back, but at that point we felt it was a really good value to take the player, and the second round it wasn’t that much,” Roseman said. “There was a little bit of a run in the second round of position, and I think people were getting on that run, and then it kind of stalled a little bit.”