Trending: Three Eagles crack ESPN Top-10 list at their respective positions
Jeremey Fowler at ESPN polls more than 50 coaches, NFL executives, and general managers every summer to put together a Top-10 list for each position heading into next season.
Three Philadelphia Eagles players made the list, with Dallas Goedert, Jason Kelce, and Lane Johnson all making the Top 10 lists at their respective positions.
Here’s what was said about each via ESPN.
6. Dallas Goedert, Philadelphia Eagles
Highest ranking: 5 | Lowest ranking: Out of top 10
Age: 27 | Last year’s ranking: 6
Goedert was the most consistent vote-getter in the next tier of tight ends, appearing on nearly 80% of the ballots. He is considered versatile for his ability to run routes with nuance and burst; flex into different positions, such as slot tight end or backside receiver; and hold up as a blocker in the running game.
“He’s kind of a sleeper to me,” an AFC personnel evaluator said. “Never gets huge media praise, but he’s a big, smooth athlete who’s good in both phases of the game — can stretch the seams and also has enough athletic ability to run the route tree.”
Young quarterbacks need nothing more than a friendly target over the middle, and Goedert provides Philadelphia’s Jalen Hurts with just that. Hurts produced a 92.8 QBR when throwing Goedert’s way, and 25.0% of Goedert’s catches went for at least 20 yards, second among tight ends last season behind Tampa Bay’s Rob Gronkowski. Only Pitts had more yards per reception than Goedert’s 14.8.
In all, Goedert caught 56 balls for 830 yards and four scores — but his 6.6% drop rate wasn’t stellar.
“One of the few three-down-capable TEs that win from multiple spots in the passing game with speed to win vertically, and he gives you enough as an inline blocker,” an NFC executive said.
7. Lane Johnson, Philadelphia Eagles
Highest ranking: 3 | Lowest ranking: 10
Age: 32 | Last year’s ranking: Honorable mention
Johnson surged back into the top 10 after injuries wrecked his 2020 campaign. His 94.9% pass block win rate was second best among offensive tackles, and he was solid against the run (76.2% run block win rate, 17th at the position). All of this was good enough for an All-Pro second-team honor.
“What’s funny is he’s probably not the [great] athlete he used to be, yet he’s still more athletic than more than half the starters, which shows just how athletic he was in his prime,” an NFL personnel director said. “That’s impressive, that he’s lost a step but [is] still a high-level guy.”
8. Jason Kelce, C, Philadelphia Eagles
Highest ranking: 3 | Lowest ranking: Out of top 10
Age: 34 | Last year’s ranking: Honorable mention
Voters saw decline in Kelce’s 2020 tape and moved him to honorable mention, only to watch him explode to first-team All-Pro status during an impressive 2021 campaign. How many 34-year-old veterans are getting substantial raises? Kelce made $9 million in 2021 and looked poised to retire. Instead, he is set to earn $11.25 million — plus an extra $3 million in incentives — to play a 12th season.
His 72.2% run block win rate (fourth overall at the position) and 95.7% pass block win rate (seventh) were both outstanding, and he was attributed just one sack against in 17 games.
“He plays with anger, which serves his supreme athleticism well,” an NFC player personnel director said. “Couple that with good coaching and the system there [in Philadelphia], and he’s able to prolong his career.”
As an NFC offensive coach added, “Mentally, he’s on another level; and physically, he moves like no other I’ve ever seen.”