PHILADELPHIA -- A couple of respected gentlemen took a look back at the 2013 NFL draft this week. It was interesting to see their different takes on how the Eagles fared.
ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. regraded the draft after one season and compared it to the grades he issued immediately after the three-day event last April. It’s an ESPN Insider piece. Let’s just say the Eagles got a B-plus from Kiper in April and, one NFC East title and one playoff game later, they got a B-plus again.
Johnson started every game at right tackle and played much better in the second half of the season. Ertz emerged as a playmaker at tight end. Logan moved into the starting defensive tackle spot after making veteran Isaac Sopoaga expendable at the trade deadline.
My old pal Don Banks at SI.com took a different approach. Banks ran a redraft of the entire first round based on how the 2013 draft class performed.
Instead of Johnson, Banks had the Eagles taking Alabama’s D.J. Fluker. Banks writes there is “nothing shabby” about the Eagles’ selection of Johnson, but points out that Fluker was an all-rookie team selection for San Diego. The Chargers took Fluker with the 11th overall pick. Banks has Johnson going seventh overall to the Arizona Cardinals in his redo.
The twist: Jeff Stoutland, the Eagles’ first-year offensive line coach, spent the previous two seasons at Alabama. So he knew Fluker as well as anyone.
Given Johnson’s steady improvement and relative lack of inexperience at the position, the former quarterback and defensive lineman still has terrific potential. But Fluker will provide an interesting comparison for as long as both players are in the NFL.