The Eagles briefly stole the spotlight during last year's NFL Draft, trading their first-round pick to the Titans as part of a surprise deal for star wide receiver A.J. Brown. The prime-time splash proved vital to Philadelphia's 2022 success, with Brown helping fuel Jalen Hurts' MVP bid and the Eagles' appearance in Super Bowl LVII.
This year, the Birds could be big movers once again. Not only is general manager Howie Roseman one of the NFL's busiest executives in terms of draft-day trades, but Philly owns two different Day 1 picks -- No. 10 and No. 30 overall -- thanks to a previous deal with the Saints. Odds are Roseman will make at least one trade this year, perhaps to increase the Eagles' overall draft haul, with the club entering April's event with just six picks total.
In the meantime, here's one logical Eagles scenario for the 2023 NFL Draft -- a seven-round mock draft:
At No. 10 overall, the Eagles could benefit from an early run on quarterbacks, with C.J. Stroud (Ohio State), Bryce Young (Alabama) and Anthony Richardson (Florida) widely projected as top 10 selections. Will Levis (Kentucky) is another possibility to go early under center. Otherwise, the only near-locks to be off the board are Alabama pass rusher Will Anderson Jr. and Georgia defensive lineman Jalen Carter, though, the latter is a wild card.
If Carter, edge rusher Tyree Wilson (Texas Tech) or consensus top cornerback prospects Christian Gonzalez (Oregon) and Devon Witherspoon (Illinois) are available at No. 10, we'd expect the Eagles to give strong consideration to all of them, roughly in that order. But assuming they're gone, Nolan Smith projects as a perfect fit for a position Roseman loves to replenish. Philly got a Defensive Player of the Year-caliber outing from free-agent addition Haason Reddick in 2022, and Smith has drawn comparisons there as a lean but lightning-quick stand-up rusher capable of moving around the formation.
It'd be a mild shock if the Eagles make both first-round picks at their current spots, but the secondary makes sense as the next priority at No. 30. Roseman paid big bucks to retain both Darius Slay and James Bradberry, but both starters will be over 30 this season. Brian Branch isn't a traditional outside corner, but that's part of the appeal; a hybrid slot/safety with shades of fellow Alabama product Minkah Fitzpatrick, he could potentially replace the departed C.J. Gardner-Johnson while offering a long-term option at corner, where veteran nickelback Avonte Maddox has also battled injuries.
While the Eagles aren't one to dedicate Day 1 picks to running back, Roseman has been in the team's front office for two prominent second-round swings: LeSean McCoy (2009) and Miles Sanders (2019). It wouldn't be outrageous for Philly to simply roll with Kenneth Gainwell, Boston Scott and explosive but oft-injured addition Rashaad Penny now that Sanders has cashed in elsewhere. But easing Jalen Hurts' burden should be an offensive mission, and Zach Charbonnet profiles as one of the safer RB bets of his class, pairing solid size with a decisive, downhill approach. He could be an instant running mate in the rotation.
Wide receiver is a tougher spot to assess. On one hand, the Eagles already boast one of the NFL's top duos in A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith; Brown is locked up with a big-money deal, and Smith will inevitably demand his own lucrative extension. But with Super Bowl hopes, they could stand to upgrade the No. 3 job, currently held by the speedy but streaky Quez Watkins. A former high school RB with track speed, Tyler Scott feels like the kind of utility man Nick Sirianni could deploy both inside and outside; his upside as a return specialist could also appeal to a special teams unit that was just so-so in 2022.
While tackle and corner are well addressed with veteran talent, they are premium positions the Eagles figure to be eyeing for down the road, especially considering Lane Johnson's injury history at right tackle. That would seem to make Connor Galvin and Justin Ford reasonable seventh-round gambles for summer competition.