The Philadelphia Eagles go cornerback early and load up on defense throughout this 2023 NFL Mock Draft.
So far this offseason, the Eagles have already lost Javon Hargrave, T.J. Edwards, and Marcus Epps, with C.J. Gardner-Johnson, Ndamukong Suh, Linval Joseph and Robert Quinn remaining unsigned.
That is a lot of impactful players, and simply defensive bodies, that will need replaced heading into 2023. I would imagine that would be the focus for general manager Howie Roseman and the Philadelphia front office for the remainder of this offseason.
If they are going to fill these holes in the NFL Draft, however, they may need to make a move. As it stands right now, the Eagles have just six total selections. While four of them are in the first three rounds (in the top-94 picks), the other two are not until the seventh round, leaving the team without a pick in the fourth, fifth, or sixth rounds.
This is the meat of the NFL Draft and where good teams, like the Eagles, find valuable depth. At this point, I think it is a must to trade down at some point early in the mock draft, parlaying an early selection into multiple mid-round picks to help round out this newly-depleted roster.
Eagles Mock Draft: Trade Down, Load Up Defense
Round 1, Pick 10: Christian Gonzalez, Cornerback, Oregon
Even with bringing back Darius Slay and James Bradberry, the Eagles look to the future and are able to land a new lockdown corner with their first pick of this mock draft. While I have Devon Witherspoon as the top cornerback in the class, Christian Gonzalez is right there. He has an incredible blend of size and athleticism, with oodles of untapped potential.
Gonzalez is very physical against receivers off the line of scrimmage, at the catch point, and coming down as a tackler. He uses his great length and agility to make plays in man coverage and his impressive closing speed and ball skills to be effective in zone.
Gonzalez’s tape is off the charts. His Combine performance was equally as impressive. He looked silky smooth and athletic as ever at his Oregon Pro Day, leading many to believe that he is truly the total package.
Gonzalez can play outside or inside, so he should be able to find a role right away as a rookie. Adding Gonzalez to the deadly pairing of Slay and Bradberry would be mighty dangerous for a reworked Philadelphia defense. There are still a few other moves that would need to be made, but getting a guy like Gonzalez early in this mock draft is a very good start.