Post-Draft Insider Notes 4.0

Scout.com's insiders continue their analysis series on this year's rookie class and how some of the players will fit in with their new teams.

Did Philadelphia Get Their Future Starting Tight End?

Not many around the NFL were surprised when the Philadelphia Eagles decided to use use a draft pick on a tight end considering starting TE L.J. Smith is on the final year of his contract. But the team kept their intention on which tight end they would be selecting pretty quiet leading up to the annual player selection weekend. They wound up using their fifth-round selection on University of Cincinnati's Brent Celek.

The team put Celek through a four hour workout which included film work, interviews, testing, and position drills before the draft then they flew him to their facilities. Coaches have been on the phone with Celek daily the past week getting him up to speed on the Eagle offense. 


Top Firm Sees Some Key Players Drop

Since the NFL draft ended, prognosticators have talked endlessly about winners and losers from the weekend. Yet league sources that scout.com has talked to have stated emphatically the biggest losers of the entire event were agents Ben Dogra and Tom Condon and Creative Artist Agency. Why? They represent QB Brady Quinn, DT Alan Branch, and C Ryan Kalil--three players who tumbled further into the draft than anyone imagined. And some fault the agents for the precipitous drop. Here are the reasons:

- There is a general consensus that it was a huge mistake by Condon to pull Quinn out of Senior Bowl week based on a mysterious knee injury then have him leave the combine without throwing. Coming off a senior season that did not meet expectations, teams were not sure what they were getting based on a few carefully orchestrated pro day workouts.

By the way, when did the Cleveland Browns start trying to get back into the first round with the hopes of acquiring Quinn? A source from Green Bay told us the team was offered the same package of picks at 16 that the Dallas Cowboys later accepted. The Packers declined as they felt there was more value using the selection.

- League sources told us for the most part, Branch was calling the shots leading up to the draft rather than being guided through the process. The result was a poorly conditioned prospect.  

-Kalil's drop was a little confusing at first yet it seems interviews at the combine doomed him. Evidently, when asked what his goals and priorities were, rather than talk of Super Bowl or Pro Bowl, Kalil told teams his goal in life was to be a movie director. Some were concerned about his dedication to football and how his relationship with Creative Artists Agency, an entertainment firm that has recently jumped into the football business, could distract him from the field.


Harrell Made Sense For Green Bay

Many thought the Green Packers reached taking DT Justin Harrell with the 16th selection of round one. Yet sources from the organization told us had Harrell not injured his biceps tendon last year and missed almost the entire season, he would've been a top 12 selection. They feel once he's back to full health, Harrell will prove to be a bargain and his addition will help give the team a solid four-man rotation in the interior of their defensive line.


Okoye Was High On Houston's Draft Board?

In the days leading up to the draft, league sources told us the Houston Texans first-round pick was on the block. Despite that, when the Texans were on the clock, they were quick to select DT Amobi Okoye. Why? Houston, we're told, had Okoye ranked as the fourth best player on their overall draft board. They felt there was only one scenario in which Okoye would fall into their laps. When that scenario played out ,they grabbed the 19-year old. Part of the reason they wanted Okoye is the new defensive system which requires the tackles to be aggressive through the gaps and requires a three-technique lineman. The feeling is Okoye will fit like a glove.

Houston plans on giving fifth-round selection Brandon Harrison every opportunity to win the starting job at free safety against incumbent starter C.C. Brown.

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