It wasn’t the person everyone expected to give Jalen Hurts a vote of confidence — hint, hint: Nick Sirianni — but he’ll take it. Especially since it came from one of the top offensive line prospects in this year’s draft.
Virginia Tech’s Christian Darrisaw randomly threw out Hurts’ name during an NFL poll asking players to list their “dream” opponent or teammate. A brief dive into the 21-year-old’s scouting reports showed no sign that he knew Hurts, although the two could have easily crossed paths at a high school or college camp. They grew up about 19 hours away from each other: Hurts in Houston, Texas; Darrisaw in Petersburg, Virginia.
Tom Brady. Julio Jones. Cam Newton.@NFLDraft prospects name their dream opponents/teammates 🤩
— NFL (@NFL) April 28, 2021
Some 50-plus NFL scouts and coaches showed up to Darrisaw’s pro day workout, per The Roanoke Times, including eight offensive line coaches. (The Eagles weren’t specifically mentioned in that group). He wowed them all and showed no lingering effects from an early January surgery to repair a core muscle injury.
The 6-foot-5, 314-pounder is expected to off the board in the first round, probably somewhere between No. 14 and No. 21. Pro Football Focus ranked Darrisaw as the third-best offensive tackle in the draft behind Penei Sewell (Oregon) and Rashawn Slater (Northwestern). And Darrisaw hopes he is the first one off the board.
Not sure why this would be a thing at this point, @Bigdawgchris1 was open w/teams throughout process & fully rehabbed the injury at EXOS, nothing quiet about it either, we had detailed story on the entire process from diagnosis to pro day in early March https://t.co/tMOqKG0nby https://t.co/A2mHmBDQUX
— michaelniziolek (@michaelniziolek) April 28, 2021
“It will be a surreal moment, definitely,” Darrisaw told Mike Niziolek. “When I wake up one morning and check the bank account and see all those commas.”
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Eagles Trading Up for Jaylen Waddle?
Jaylen Waddle’s name keeps coming up as a guy to watch at No. 12 for the Eagles. He fits all the prerequisites: fast wheels, polished route runner, high football IQ. And Waddle has been growing a cult following in recent days and some think he may get picked before Philly goes on the clock. Unless the Eagles trade up.
According to ESPN, Waddle remains high on the New York Giants’ radar who pick at No. 11. The Miami Dolphins have also been linked to Waddle at No. 6, although their preference is still believed to be Ja’Marr Chase there. Either way, Philadelphia might consider moving up in the draft to get Waddle who has been compared to Tyreek Hill.
There are teams ahead of Philly in the draft order who believe the Eagles are trying to trade up from No. 12 to make sure they get the speedy Waddle. They believe (accurately) that the Giants would be a threat to take Waddle at No. 11 if he fell that far, so if they want him, they have to get up to No. 9 or higher. Detroit at No. 7 and Carolina at No. 8 are two teams that would be interested in trading down and could take the Eagles’ call.
— Matt Bowen (@MattBowen41) April 28, 2021
Interesting tidbit, especially considering all the smoke from scouts saying Waddle is the better prospect than DeVonta Smith. Time will tell.
Justin Fields Remains Option for Eagles
The quarterback factory has a reputation to uphold, and perhaps a new punch card to hand out. ESPN’s Todd McShay said he has heard “there’s some interest in Justin Fields within the [Eagles] organization.” This isn’t the first time the Ohio State quarterback has been linked to Philly.
However, McShay curbed his comments by adding that the Eagles could simply be posturing to trade back and get even more draft capital for 2022. And tack on a few later-round picks this year. Fields could go to the San Francisco 49ers at No. 3 or he could fall all the way down the draft board to the New England Patriots at No. 15. The Eagles will certainly be watching and listening to offers.