NFL Draft 2021: Eagles’ options at quarterback

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Dave Zangaro
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Exploring Eagles’ options at QB throughout the 2021 draft originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

The Eagles already traded down from 6 to 12 and still have 11 picks in the 2021 NFL Draft.

While they might not make all 11 picks, they will have plenty of options during the three days of the draft, which begins on April 29.

Here’s a reminder of their 11 picks:

1st round: No. 12 (trade with MIA)

2nd round: No. 37 (own pick)

3rd round: No. 70 (own pick)

3rd round: No. 84 (trade with Colts)

4th round: No. 123 (trade with MIA)

5th round: No. 150 (own pick)

6th round: No. 189 (own pick)

6th round: No. 224 (compensatory pick)

6th round: No. 225 (compensatory pick)

7th round: No. 234 (own pick)

7th round: No. 240 (from 49ers as part of Marquise Goodwin trade)

After trading Carson Wentz, the Eagles are very likely to go into the 2021 season with Jalen Hurts as their starting quarterback. But it doesn’t seem like the team is all-in on Hurts being their franchise quarterback. Still, the trade down from 6 signaled that the Eagles weren’t going to draft one early.

But even after the addition of Joe Flacco, there’s a decent chance the Eagles draft a quarterback at some point during the draft.

Here are their options:

At No. 12

Justin Fields, Ohio State (6-3, 227): This is unlikely. If the Eagles were in love with Fields or any of these top QBs, they wouldn’t have traded down from 6 and instead would have tried to trade up to get them. But in the event that Fields begins to slide, there’s a very outside possibility the Eagles could be opportunistic and take him. Like I said, I very much doubt it, but want to leave the possibility open. Opinions are always split on the QB classes, but there’s no denying Fields’ talent.

In the middle rounds

Kyle Trask, Florida (6-5, 236): The obvious connection here is to Eagles new quarterbacks coach Brian Johnson, who coached Trask at Florida and got him to play at a very high level. Trask threw for over 4,200 yards with 43 touchdowns and 8 interceptions in 2020 for the Gators. He’s not going to wow anyone with his speed but has a big frame and plenty of arm strength to make all the throws; he just needs to do it more consistently.

Kellen Mond, Texas A&M (6-3, 211): If the Eagles like the idea of a dual threat quarterback, Mond has plenty of ability to move in and out of the pocket. Was able to slightly improve his accuracy and interception ratio in 2020 but still needs work as a passer. As a mid-round pick, Mond has some upside.

Late-round sleeper(s)

K.J. Costello, Mississippi State (6-4, 225): At 6-5, 225, Costello certainly looks the part and back in 2018 had an impressive season at Stanford in 2018, when he threw for 3,540 yards with 29 touchdowns and 11 picks. But Costello dealt with injuries in 2019 before becoming a graduate transfer to Mississippi State. He had a pretty underwhelming season in 2020 and even lost his starting job. His stock is pretty low right now.

Feleipe Franks, Arkansas (6-6, 234): This is another quarterback with a connection to Johnson. Franks was the Gators’ starter before Trask. Franks suffered an ankle injury in 2019 ending his time at Florida before transferring to start one season for the Razorbacks. In that one year at Arkansas, Franks completed 68.5% of his passes for over 2,100 yards with 17 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. Franks seems to have all the physical tools but is a work in progress.

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