The Philadelphia Eagles have the 12th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Prior to making a trade with the Miami Dolphins, the Eagles had the 6th overall pick.
Eagles traded their sixth to the Dolphins for No. 12 and their 2022 first-round pick. Teams also swapped mid-round picks — Eagles' pick 156 for No. 123.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 26, 2021
The Eagles are definitely in a rebuilding period, far removed from the Super Bowl Championship three years ago.
Headliners in this draft are quarterbacks.
Should the Eagles draft another quarterback in the 2021 NFL Draft?
The answer is no, and here is why.
Jalen Hurts Was Just Drafted Last Year
12 months ago, the Eagles drafted a quarterback.
His name is Jalen Hurts from Oklahoma (after transferring from Alabama).
The Eagles used the 53rd pick overall in the second round to draft Hurts.
That decision to draft Hurts started the discord with their former franchise quarterback Carson Wentz.
He reportedly was upset and felt undermined by the Hurts draft.
With Wentz traded away, the spotlight is on Hurts.
Why would the Eagles add another quarterback to the mix to further confuse things?
Hurts played in 15 games but started just 4 of them.
The Eagles should allow Hurts to grow into the starting quarterback role that they sacrificed so much to give him.
"Nobody really works harder than he does." – Philadelphia Eagles 3-time Pro Bowl RT Lane Johnson on QB Jalen Hurts. Catch the full interview with @robmaaddi on the latest AP Pro Football Podcast.
— AP NFL (@AP_NFL) April 8, 2021
They will never know if all of the decisions leading up to naming Hurts the starter for 2021 were correct if they muddy the water by drafting another quarterback.
In addition to establishing Hurts, the Eagles already acquired their backup quarterback in veteran Joe Flacco.
Trading Draft Picks Gave The Eagles Draft Capital For 2022
By trading down this year, the Eagles afforded themselves extra draft picks next year.
This gives Jalen Hurts a year as the starting quarterback to see how things go.
If it does not go well, the Eagles are in a position to draft a quarterback in 2022.
Former Philadelphia Eagles scout and current NFL Network analyst, Daniel Jeremiah, articulated the strategy well.
“To me, if I’m not sold on Hurts, I get the strategy of, ‘OK, hey, let’s get some insurance here, we’re going to have potentially three 1’s next year, (so) we’ll give Jalen this year, see how it goes, and if for some reason it doesn’t go well, we’ve got all these resources to try and address the quarterback position. So that’s what this kind of looks like to me. Man, if you really, really thought, ‘OK, we’ve got something with Hurts,’ it would be hard for me to pass off the opportunity to get someone like (Kyle) Pitts or Ja’Marr Chase.”
The Eagles Have Other Pressing Roster Needs
Trading down in a quarterback rich draft reinforces that the Eagles are not looking for a quarterback.
The roster is in need of other position players that can be drafted and make an immediate impact in 2021.
Wide receiver and cornerback are two positions that immediately come to mind.
Depending on the mock draft referenced, the Eagles could use that 12th pick to reunite Hurts with Alabama wide receiver (and Heisman Trophy winner) DeVonta Smith.
Even after trading back to No. 12, could the Eagles still wind up with Alabama WR DeVonta Smith in the 2021 NFL Draft? 😳
Would you want to see the Heisman Trophy winner in Philadelphia?
— The Draft Network (@TheDraftNetwork) April 9, 2021
These and all other draft questions are soon to be answered as the 2021 NFL Draft kicks off on April 29, 2021 from Cleveland, Ohio.