PHILADELPHIA - The Eagles might trade up in next week's NFL Draft.
Or they might trade down.
They also may stick at No. 12 overall and select a player with most of the money there being on South Carolina cornerback Jaycee Horn, the Alabama receiver who falls a bit - Jaylen Waddle - or Heisman Trophy winner Devonta Smith. Or it could be the typical Philadelphia default settings of offensive line (maybe Alijah Vera-Tucker) or defensive line (Kwity Paye).
The proceeding was sourced by common sense but the thought of the Eagles moving up a bit after falling down from No. 6 to 12 picked up a bit of steam earlier this week when Albert Breer of SI.com reported a “short move” back into the top 10 is indeed in play, something that would enable GM Howie Roseman to get back in front of two NFC East rivals: the Cowboys at No. 10 overall and the Giants at 11.
Before you chuckle, understand Roseman likes to manipulate the board more than most general managers and he hasn't shown much of a dominant hand over the years when it comes to moving up or going backward.
According to Brad Spielberger of OverTheCap.com and ProFootballFocus.com, Roseman is in a group that includes Les Snead of the Los Angeles Rams, Tampa Bay's Jason Licht, who worked under Roseman in personnel with the Eagles from 2003-2007, Arizona's Steve Keim, San Francisco's John Lynch, Green Bay's Brian Gutekunst and the Las Vegas duo of Mike Mayock and Jon Gruden as decision-makers with no real bias toward going one way.
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The other categories are GM's who go up to get their guy (think New Orleans' Mickey Loomis), the kings of moving back to accumulate more draft capital (Rick Speilman of Minnesota, New England's Bill Belichick, and Seattle's John Schneider), and the "Stand Pat Gillicks" (think Mike Brown of Cincinnati and The Joneses in Dallas).
When Spielberger did his original research before the 2020 draft, however, Roseman was at 10 moves up and 12 down. Move forward a year and those numbers are now 10 vs. 16 so the trend has been toward stocking draft capital in the wake of the 2018 and 2019 drafts in which the Eagles only made five selections in each of those years.
Now that Roseman had 10 picks in 2020 and starts with 11 selections this time around - more than any other team in the league to start - plus 20 total over the next two years the bet is Roseman gets back to being the mover and the shaker just as likely to go up as down depending on how the board falls and what players the Eagles really like.
So will Roseman trade up, trade back, or stay put next week?
History says all of the above over the full seven rounds so buckle in and get ready to have some fun.
John McMullen contributes Eagles coverage for SI.com's EagleMaven and is the NFL Insider for JAKIB Media. You can listen to John, alongside legendary sports-talk host Jody McDonald every morning from 8-10 on ‘Birds 365,” streaming live on both PhillyVoice.com and YouTube. John is also the host of his own show "Extending the Play" on AM1490 in South Jersey. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen
Ed Kracz is the publisher of SI.com’s EagleMaven and host of the Eagles Unfiltered Podcast. Check out the latest Eagles news at www.SI.com/NFL/Eagles and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.
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