Eagles had Graham targeted during Julius Peppers hysteria; Roseman versus Heckert
Away from the podium Andy Reid said that Eric Berry was the only safety the Eagles would have dealt up for. And he was telling the truth; Berry came off the board at No. 5. The Eagles left Thomas alone when they moved up to the 13th overall pick.
We all remember the Julius Peppers free agent odyssey tour. His agent said the Eagles were very, very interested in JP. Said the Birds were next on the list, right after Chicago.
While some reporters swallowed it the Eagles knew Graham was their man. And they're convinced he won't disappoint - high-motor players who can get to the QB and play hurt rarely do.
Almost as revealing is the Eagles' approach to the draft with new G.M. Howie Roseman. In a draft full of third-round depth, he reccomended they trade both of their 3's as well as No. 24 overall to move up 11 spots. Obviously he thinks it's better to have the highest rated player than a bunch of guys who statisticaly are longshots to make anything but the practice squad. Graham was
Finally, Roseman-Heckert comparisons are unavoidable.
Heckert, now with the Browns, stayed at No. 7 and did the safe thing - drafting CB Joe Haden. That in a draft where the Browns could have filled a lot of needs by trading down in the first round for a similarly talented corner and extra picks.
The Eagles got their man - Brandon Graham.
And it looks like they got the G.M. job right although we'll all be watching Earl Thomas and DE Derrick Morgan to compare their numbers with Graham's.