Eagles select Landon Dickerson at No. 37 in 2021 NFL draft

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Reuben Frank
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Eagles draft a future replacement for Jason Kelce in 2nd round originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

With their second-round pick, No. 37 overall, the Eagles selected Alabama interior offensive lineman Landon Dickerson.

Dickerson is the first offensive lineman the Eagles have drafted in the second round since Winston Justice in 2006.

Dickerson, 6-foot-5, 335 pounds, was a two-year starter at Alabama after transferring from Florida State. He’s a powerful run blocker, a terrific technician and a good athlete for an interior lineman.

“He’s one of the nastier players in college football,” NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah said.

In Dickerson, the Eagles have the eventual successor to Jason Kelce, who turns 34 this fall, is going into his 11th season and has been playing things year-by-year.

They also have insurance at any of the three interior spots along an offensive lineman that was decimated by injuries last year.

Dickerson can play guard or center and with Brandon Brooks turning 32 this summer and coming off another serious injury, Dickerson gives the Eagles a potential starter off the bat.

"It's a tremendous opportunity," Dickerson about learning from Kelce and Brooks. "Both of them are extremely talented players, extremely experienced, and I'm really looking forward to being able to talk with them and, one, learn what the NFL is going to be like for me and also learn more about offensive line play.

“Two amazing players, and I can't tell you how appreciative I am to be able to learn from these guys."

This is the first time in 75 years the Eagles’ first two picks in a draft are from the same school. In 1946, they took Leo Riggs and Gordon Gray with their first two picks out of USC.

Dickerson is coming off a torn ACL that he suffered in the SEC Championship Game this past December and required surgery. He was considered by many a first-round pick before the injury. 

While at Florida State before he transferred to Alabama, Dickerson suffered a left ACL injury in 2016 that required surgery and ended his freshman year, a right ankle injury in 2017 that required surgery and ended his sophomore year and a left ankle injury that ended his junior year in 2018.

"I don't let the past bother me," he said. "What's in the past is in the past. You can't change it. Just got to live with it and move on."

Although the Eagles have taken combo guard-tackles in the first two rounds — such as Jermane Mayberry in 1996 and Shawn Andrews in 2004, both in the first round — Dickerson is the first pure interior lineman the Eagles have taken this early since first-round pick Lester Holmes, a guard out of Jackson State, in 1993.

The Eagles had some intriguing opportunities at 37, including Alabama defensive lineman Christian Barmore, hybrid Notre Dame linebacker-safety Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah and Florida State corner Asante Samuel Jr. But Dickerson, while not an exciting pick, addresses a pressing need.

The Eagles now have a 22-year-old wide receiver from Alabama, a 22-year-old interior offensive lineman from Alabama and a 22-year-old quarterback who began his career at Alabama.They’ve selected more players who spent time at Alabama in the first two rounds the last two years (three) than they did in the entire previous 84 years of the draft (one).

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