Marino's Report Card: NFC East

Former pro scout Tom Marino wraps up his evaluation of the NFL Draft with his grades for the NFC East. Check it out...

Philadelphia Eagles                                B

Rnd Overall Name Pos School
2 36 Kevin Kolb QB Houston
2 57 Victor Abiamiri DE Notre Dame
3 87 Stewart Bradley OB Nebraska
3 90 Tony Hunt RB Penn State
5 159 C.J. Gaddis DS Clemson
5 162 Brent Celek TE Cincinnati
6 201 Rashad Barksdale CB Albany
7 236 Nate Ilaoa RB Hawaii

Most of the draft pundits and media types blasted the Eagles draft selections, but I actually thought they made some very solid and interesting choices throughout.

As I stated last week, I really like the way Kolb spins the football and believe he has the arm, intellect, quickness and accuracy to develop into a solid professional. I liken him to a young Tommy Kramer. 

Abiamiri has a lot of ability and should develop into a productive every-down performer at the defensive end position. 

Stewart Bradley has more playing range and athletic skills than I had originally expected.  That should help him factor quickly on special teams and at the outside linebacker position. 

Tony Hunt is a big, physical chain-moving back who does not possess top speed but is a very effective downhill runner. He's the kind of player who appeared to get stronger as the game progressed. 

Fifth-round picks Gaddis and Celek are not household names, but both are solid journeyman football players.

Sixth-round selection Barksdale is a very interesting prospect who walked onto the football squad as a senior. 

At the 236th slot in the 7th-round , the Eagles selected running back Nate Ilaoa from the University of Hawaii, and it is my feeling that if he can keep his weight under control, this human bowling ball will become a fan favorite in the city of brotherly love. 

Many people are involved in the Eagles' draft day decisions, but I believe Ryan Grigson should be singled out for special recognition. I had the opportunity to work with Ryan for three seasons with the Rams and believe he is one of the top young scouts in the game today. .


New York Giants                                    C

Rnd Overall Name Pos School
1 20 Aaron Ross CB Texas
2 51 Steve Smith WR USC
3 81 Jay Alford DT Penn State
4 116 Zak DeOssie MB Brown
5 153 Kevin Boss TE Western Oregon
6 189 Adam Koets OT Oregon State
7 224 Michael Johnson DS Arizona
7 250 Ahmad Bradshaw RB Marshall

The Giants had many more holes to fill than they had draft selections, but made two very solid selections in the first two rounds. 

Aaron Ross (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)
Aaron Ross is a talented player with size and speed. Although he does possess punt return skills, I do not expect the Giants to utilize him in his capacity. 

Steve Smith is a pro who should see the field quickly. 

In round three, the Giants selected Jay Alford, a steady player with good credentials. 

Zak DeOssie has a long way to go in terms of know-how, but has size, speed, and intelligence--three very important qualities. I was very impressed with his ability to change direction and close to the football. 

Kevin Boss is another small-program player with catching skills and athletic upside, but he will need to improve his overall blocking and core strength. 

I see Oregon State's Adams Koets as an intelligent journeyman right tackle prospect. 

I was not impressed with Michael Johnson's Combine workout in Indianapolis in terms of speed in movement, but at the 224th spot he was worth considering. 

Bradshaw is a talented, undersized player with good vision and running instincts, but lacks size and top speed for the position. 

Special recognition to veteran scouts Jerry Shay and Steve Verderosa, two very accomplished and respected names in the profession. I'm proud to call both of them friends.


Dallas Cowboys                                       C-

Rnd Overall Name Pos School
1 26 Anthony Spencer DE Purdue
3 67 James Marten OT Boston College
4 103 Isaiah Stanback QB Washington
4 122 Doug Free OT Northern Illinois
6 178 Nick Folk KS Arizona
6 195 Deon Anderson FB Connecticut
7 212 Courtney Brown CB Cal Poly
7 237 Alan Ball CB Illinois

Anthony Spencer gives the Cowboys a prototypical 3-4 scheme DE. I like his playing range, foot speed, and pass rushing skills. He should factor in quickly. 

James Marten (Boston College Athletics)
James Marten was a very pleasant surprise starting for the first time at Boston College at the offensive left tackle position. I loved his feet, use of hands and toughness. 

Isaiah Stanback is an extremely talented athlete who will contribute on special teams and at the wideout position while developing his skills at quarterback. 

Doug Free is a big man, but was a disappointment to me from an athletic standpoint. 

Nick Folk has the leg strength to kick at the professional level, but is probably a year away. 

Deon Anderson is a journeyman college fullback, but has a chance to factor for the Cowboys--particularly since the team's backup fullback in 2006 was a converted linebacker. 

Seventh-round selections Courtney Brown (size) and Alan Ball (speed) figure to compete for backup positions in an already crowded secondary.


Washington Redskins                             D-

Rnd Overall Name Pos School
1 6 LaRon Landry DS LSU
5 143 Dallas Sartz OB USC
6 179 H.B. Blades MB Pittsburgh
6 205 Jordan Palmer QB UTEP
7 105 Tyler Ecker TE Michigan

In terms of skills and athletic ability, LaRon Landry could well have been the second-best prospect in the country. He is an experienced, instinctive player with a very high ceiling. A sure-fire starter in his first season, he could well be a force for many years to come. 

Dallas Sartz (Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)
Fifth-round selection, Dallas Sartz, is a former free safety and is a smart, versatile player with good playing range. Although he wasn't an explosive hitter (too much length), he was a positive force for the Trojans defense in 2006. If he can stay healthy should contribute in a backup special-teams role. 

Blades is a tough, instinctive player with limited range. The son of former pro Bennie Blades, I felt the diminutive H B had difficultly meeting and disengaging from blocks. 

Jordan Palmer is a player with limited a playing background who I believe improved greatly over the last two seasons. 

The bottom line for the Redskins in this draft?  They had too many critical areas with too few picks.

Tom Marino is a veteran of 35 years in the player personnel field, most recently with the St. Louis Rams. He has worked in three professional leagues (NFL, USFL, and WFL), and among his many accomplishments, is credited with the discovery of Eric Swann, the first non-collegiate player since 1946 to be selected in the 1st round of the NFL college draft.


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