Earlier this week, the Eagles were spotted talking to a handful of notable draft prospects at practices leading up to this year’s Senior Bowl, and some more reports have surfaced regarding the team’s discussions with college all-stars. According to Tim McManus and Sheil Kapadia of PhillyMag.com among other networks, Philadelphia recently met with prospects Denard Robinson, a former Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year honoree; and John Jenkins, a 359-pound defensive tackle projected to go in the first round of April’s draft.
Robinson was widely considered to be a candidate for the Heisman Trophy during his career as a quarterback for Michigan, but his small size (5-foot-11, 195 pounds) and an injury to his throwing arm as a senior have prompted the dual-threat athlete to practice as a wide receiver in anticipation of the draft. Per McManus, Robinson was recruited by new Eagles head coach Chip Kelly out of high school (perhaps unsurprisingly considering Kelly’s reputation of running a fast-paced offense), but instead found success as a Wolverine with more than 1,100 rushing yards in three consecutive seasons to go along with 49 career touchdown passes.
In sharp contrast to Robinson, Jenkins has drawn attention at the Senior Bowl because of his massive frame and figures to garner interest as a potential nose tackle at the NFL level. The Eagles have yet to announce what defensive scheme they will operate under the direction of Kelly, but if the 3-4 system is installed, Jenkins could be of serious interest as an early-round target. According to a CBS Sports scouting report, Jenkins compares to the Packers’ B.J. Raji in that his “mass and strength are the most obvious of his impressive physical characteristics” as an interior defensive lineman.
The Eagles aren’t believed to have serious needs at either the wide receiver or defensive tackle position–the respective roles of Robinson and Jenkins. However, there’s no telling what direction the team could look to take come April, and there is certainly no harm in the Eagles simply meeting with the prospects well before draft day decisions begin to unfold.