NFC East Notes: Eagles, Cowboys, Redskins

Although Chip Kelly has had nothing but good things to say about Johnny Manziel publicly, it seems clear that the Eagles never really thought about taking him with the 22nd pick, writes Sheil Kapadia of Philadelphia Magazine. “I love him,” Kelly said. “I think he’s a dynamic quarterback. I also think we have a very, very good quarterback situation – not only with Nick [Foles], but you add Mark Sanchez and Matt Barkley – we think quarterback is a strength for us right now. We felt like the pass-rusher who we had rated higher was the guy we were gonna take.”

  • “Best player available” is used ad nauseam during the draft. However, it’s the Eagles‘ philosophy and they’re adamant about it, as evidenced by the quotes from GM Howie Roseman and elly in a column by Philadelphia Daily News writer Paul Domowitch following the (surprise) selection of Marcus Smith.
  • And then there’s the Cowboys, who did not stick to their board, according to ESPN’s Todd Archer (via Twitter). When the Cowboys lost out on their top three draft targets last night — all defensive players — they opted for a relatively safe choice in offensive lineman Zack Martin even though they had Manziel graded higher.
  • Consequently, rounds two and three have become more important for the Cowboys, says Brandon George of the Dallas Morning News. After fielding a historically bad defense in 2013 and losing DeMarcus Ware, the team has plenty of holes to fill, especially on the defensive line. George mentions four defensive lineman who could be on the team’s radar tonight: Boise State’s Demarcus Lawrence, Missouri’s Kony Ealy, Oregon State’s Scott Crichton and Florida State’s Timmy Jernigan, all of whom made predraft visits to Dallas.
  • The Giants‘ selection of wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. at No. 12 puts them on track to fix their broken offense, writes Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News. The LSU star caught 59 passes for 1,152 yards and eight touchdowns last season. Giants wide receiver Reuben Randle, who played with Beckham at LSU, described him as a “DeSean Jackson type,” writes Ebenezer Samuel of the Daily News.
  • The Redskins were not part of Thursday night’s festivities, but they’re up at No. 34 tonight, and USA Today’s Steven Ruiz takes a look at their options. Most speculation centers around the team selecting an offensive lineman, perhaps Alabama’s Cyrus Kouandijo, Virginia’s Morgan Moses or UCLA’s Xavier Su’a-Filo.

Zach Links contributed to this post.

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