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Eric Eager, SumerSports VP

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May 1, 2023 9:07 pm

Eric Eager, SumerSports VP

Zach Gelb Show / Zach Gelb

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May 1, 2023 9:07 pm

Eric Eager joined Zach to breakdown his biggest winners & losers from the NFL Draft. 

Zach Gelb Show
Zach Gelb

We continue this exact Yelp show coast to coast on CBS Sports Radio.

Let's recap the 2023 NFL Draft as we're back from Kansas City. And now joining me is a man that we actually met at Arizona this year for the Super Bowl. And he's absolutely tremendous and enjoyed the conversation. That, of course, is Eric Eager from Sumer Sports, and he's kind enough to join us right now.

Eric, appreciate the time. How you been? At least in the city. I don't know if you're a Giants or Jets fan, but obviously Rogers and then, of course, the basketball and the hockey teams in the playoffs this year. Yeah, well, we have a big Rangers game tonight, so I'm a big Ranger fan. I actually root for the Patriots, so Rogers going to the Jets.

Not so much, but definitely exciting. And I just wonder, like, what's your expectations for the Jets this year? Because I call them a Super Bowl contender, but I don't think that they'll win the Super Bowl. Yeah, I think if you are a Jets fan, you look and say, well, when the Bucks acquired Brady, New Orleans was kind of in the position that the Bills were in, right?

Always close, but never going to get there. Bucks don't even win the division the first year Brady's there, but they sneak into the Super Bowl and win as a five seed. Rogers' only career Super Bowl win actually came out of a six seed in 2010.

So I think that's the expectation for me is, like, they get into the playoffs as a five or six seed and then we'll see what happens, but I know Jets fans would probably be disappointed if that's all that happens. Going to the top of the draft with Bryce Young, he was my favorite quarterback from this draft class. I know it took some time, I guess, for the Panthers to decide if they were going to go young or shroud.

The only negative you really hear, Eric, about Bryce Young is his size or lack of it. How much do you think that could maybe determine from having a successful NFL career? Yeah, I think, you know, the guy that he kind of reminds me a little bit of is Jim McMahon, a guy, you know, when he was in BYU had tremendous production. I think he won something like 25 straight starts as an NFL quarterback. You know, won a Super Bowl with the Bears, of course, but it was always kind of injured.

Never started 16 games in a year. That, to me, is like the question mark, but Bryce Young's a creative player. He was very good at avoiding sacks when pressured. He was very good under pressure as well.

Something that CJ Stroud didn't have going for him. So it makes a lot of sense that they would move up for him. And, you know, I think that, you know, in that NFC, he could win the division right away in the NFC South because he's got so much talent and they did a good job of building around him with Phelan and Charke and Hayden Hurst. You know, the fact that they were able to do that despite losing DJ Moore was impressive. So I like him and I think Frank Reich is a wonderful quarterback, whisper type guy, even though he doesn't have the prototypical size of a right quarterback.

I think he'll do well. When you look at what the Texans did. So they take CJ Stroud at two and then they find a way to trade up to get the third overall pick. I know that a lot of people are crushing the Texans for how much they gave up to get to that three spot.

And I get it next year, right? Their own pick that they gave away to the Cardinals could be a top five pick, maybe the number one overall pick in the draft. I just like to the Texans that were just starting to finally take that step and bring in some productive players. And now you have a coach that you actually think is going to be there for the foreseeable future.

Yeah. I mean, the last time the draft had the number one and two pick go to the same team with 1992 with the Colts and like, you know, that I, I think that the AFC South is flat enough. And I think the, you know, for them to be able to at least like get out of that, you know, seller type of position because Will Anderson so productive because CJ Stroud, I think is going to be kind of that Kirk Cousins like quarterback, which I don't think can win you a Super Bowl, of course. But I think on, you know, when you're only making $10 million a year can be productive, you know, they, they, they got console back and other cornerstone piece. You know, I, you know, last year they drafted a corner that I think is fairly good and Derek stingley.

So they're starting to build things in. And as you said, D'Amico Ryan is a good coach comes from a great program in San Francisco. So, you know, I don't like giving up more than like 137 million in assets to move up for a defensive end, but I see what they're thinking. And, you know, when you look at the Casario, the general manager, like he doesn't have much time left, right? So the, the, those future picks probably don't mean as much to him as they would a Howie Roseman or a Quasi a Doppler mentor, a Brett beach.

So I, you know, you, I understand what they're doing, even though the price was incredible to move up to three to get that twofer that they got in Stroud and Anderson. And the other way that I also look at this from the Cardinal standpoint, I got to feel like Kyler Murray is on the hot seat. I know that's bizarre to say, cause they just gave him a big extension and it's different compared to what they just did with their old coach and, and, and GM as well, but they're out of jobs. But I look at Kyler Murray and potentially having two top five, maybe the first and second pick in the draft next year, it seems like his seat is warm in Arizona. Yeah, it's tricky because the, the guaranteed salary in 2024 is 35.3 million, um, you know, cap number of 51 million next year. Uh, it's so sad that he got hurt because, you know, his two, like kind of cheap years last year is 12.7 million this year, 16 million. Um, they come when Murray a, was on a bad roster with a bad coach and B, you know, he's injured. So it's not a great situation for them, but you're right. I mean, if they get, you know, the top two picks in the draft, um, they either have to do what Chicago did and, and trade for a ransom, which, you know, I think, you know, the, the fan base fan bases don't necessarily like that, or they got to take Caleb Williams, in which case, uh, you have to move on from Murray.

Um, and moving on from Murray is not going to be, you know, they're not going to get as much as they think because of that price just being so steep. Eric, you're here with us. Were you surprised that the Colts ended up taking Anthony Richardson? Cause everyone was looking at linking Indianapolis to will love us.

I was pleasantly surprised. I mean, we look at Shane psych and, you know, he had Justin Herbert as a rookie, got him to rookie of the year. He had Jalen hurts for two years, got them to the playoffs once, got them to the super bowl. I think with Richardson, if you look at that feeling, it's an arm talent of, of Herbert and it's the athleticism and running ability of hurts all in one player. Uh, if they can go in and do a good job with that office of line, uh, you know, they have some players like the tight end position with, with, uh, woods and, and mo Ali Cox, uh, still there. But then you also have the, you know, Pittman, you have Josh downs now from this draft, uh, Johnson Taylor in the backfield that could be pretty good. And, you know, uh, Jerry funders, a good piece on the middle linebacker on the other side of the ball, like they could be okay. And if he ends up being like kind of the feeling of what we all think he can be, then that's a contender in the AFC for a long time, especially with, you know, the homes and the boroughs and the, the Herbert's and all those guys coming up on their big money. You know, Indianapolis could have, you know, the league by, you know, by the league by storm, if they have a guy like Richardson on a rookie contract.

Talking to Eric Eager from sumer sports. So it was crazy. A lot of people, like we were talking about, didn't think we'll, Levis was going to get past the, the cults at four.

I'm not even that high on will. Levis is others are, but I would have never thought in a million years that he would have fell out of the first round to then go to Tennessee as well in that second round. What did you make of the Levis pick by Tennessee?

I thought it was good by the time they got there. Like I thought he could have gone to Minnesota at 23. They were clearly not sold on him. Second straight year, the Vikings, you know, with Kirk cousins, you know, eventually going to be gone. They're passed on the top quarterback in the draft, or sorry, one of the top quarterbacks in the draft. And, you know, they went, you know, they tried to trade down the whole time, ended up going with Jordan Addison. And then after he left, you know, pass up the Vikings, there was one team, the new Orleans state to 29 that felt like they were in play. But after that, it was like, wow, he, if no team moves up and takes them.

And by the way, the fifth year option becoming less valuable now that it's guaranteed fully. They, it was a five was real, really, you know, sort of foreseeable, but him getting past the Titans at 11 initially was a surprise to me. And that was the one where I thought he could really go, especially since they didn't trade up, you know, they could see that as a value. But I liked him going to Tennessee here. I think you're going to see, you know, a situation with Hannah Hill, like it was with Carson Wentz in 2016, where Sam Bradford was the guy until another team needed them. And then they could trade him for, you know, a first round pick. If no team needs him, then he might just stay and be the starter all year.

But I think you'll see Levitts at some point in Tennessee this year in the state of Hannah Hill. I don't like Eric Eager drafted running backs in the first round. If your team has a lot of holes and like, it doesn't make sense for Atlanta to me to take Bijan Robinson, but just how many other areas of need they have to fix up. But did you have a problem with the Falcons taking Bijan Robinson at eight? I did just because again, like Levitts could have been an option, you know, corner Christian Gonzalez could have been an option, although he fell all the way to your Patriots. I think that, you know, it's just really hard to get value out of that.

Right. Last year, they had a fifth round pick Tyler Algier rushed for a thousand yards. Cordell Patterson the year before was pretty good at that running back spot.

And instead of sort of like chalking it up to a great team and a great offensive line, they said, no, we need we need a little bit more at that position. And I just don't think that the the marginal value of that position is very high. So, you know, even though Robinson's great, I think, you know, if you're if you're in fantasy football, you should take him very, very high.

I just don't know if you're getting that kind of value at eight with him. And, you know, you know, even Detroit, I don't know if you're necessarily getting any value with Jameer Gibbs at twelve. Eric Eager, the Lions draft, I thought the first three picks were head scratchers to me and Jameer Gibbs, Jack Campbell and then Sam Laporta. And then I liked what they did with Brian Branch and Hendon Hooker. How do you look back at the Lions draft? Yeah, I think that the Lions draft was was really, you know, a rough draft in the sense that if you're trying to build for the long term, if you're trying to take, you know, great, good players at premium positions, you know where they're expected to go. You know, it's really hard to it's really hard to justify those picks if you're looking at just winning this year and getting your first division title, your first ever NFC North title.

But your first division title since nineteen ninety three, you know, your you know, it makes sense. They do have a hole at linebacker. They do, you know, probably want to get off of DeAndre Swift. But, you know, long term, I think we're going to be looking back at this thing and asking ourselves, like, wow, they really should have gotten off Jared Goff and they could have had Will Levis and or they could have had, you know, traded up for Anthony Richardson or something like that. And instead they went running back linebacker. And now we're wondering why they don't have, you know, great players at premium positions or, you know, they had to overspend for Ahmaud Arasne Brown because they didn't drop Jackson Smith to jig but twice. How about the Eagles draft? It seems like everyone's just throwing bouquets after bouquets at Howie Roseman.

I thought he hit it out of the park. How about yourself? Yeah, yeah, for sure. Two Georgia players in the first round and, you know, you continue to pick up value later on in the draft. Roseman does such a good job of kind of picking up the dollar bills and other teams leave them on the ground.

And it's not flashy. It's not they don't out out evaluate people. They don't out, you know, maneuver people, but they just kind of do the expected thing all the time. You know, they have to first-round picks for the second straight year and and you know that to me is also part of the whole thing is like, you know, you just have more, you know, you trade went when when the pew point for him was passed and you know, you trade. Yeah, you're able to use a pick on AJ Brown last year and then this year they get you two of the best players on the best defensive college football of all time. It just makes a lot of sense and their players that they don't need to contribute this year because they're such a good roster, but players that will look back and say, wow, you know, it's pretty cool to get them where they got them. One of my favorite moments from the draft was picked 20 to 23 when we saw wide receivers go back to back to back to back Jackson Smith and Jigba to the Seahawks. Quinn and Johnston to the Chargers a flowers to the Ravens and then Jordan Addison to the Vikings out of those for Eric Eager. Who do you think?

So to have the best career? I think Smith's a jig, but just because you know, he's going to come in and not be asked to do too much right away with locket and net cap there. Gino Smith, we can distribute the football pretty well as you saw last season. So they'll get some opportunities early and then when you know when eventually the the moonlight on on locket's career. We start to see that he'll be able to slide in there and be a starter but expectations will be too high soon. I think the Vikings are going to want Jordan Addison to start right away, which is, you know, always questionable.

You know, putting Johnson. I don't know if he fits with the Chargers doing because I think they need more of a deep threat, but he's certainly a good prospect. You know, I don't hate any of those four picks. I you know, they flowers with the Ravens. I thought that was great as well. Hopefully they can, you know, for the first time now that that Romans gone and monkeys there, they can take advantage of some of their good wide receivers.

I saw all four of them are okay. I think the best one is Smith fishing, but to the Seahawks who had a great draft and earlier they were able to get fifth overall Devon Witherspoon. I know they have Kenneth Walker who I love last year and they also drafted Zach Charbonnet the running back out of UCLA in the second round. You know, when we look at the NFC Eric and I think this is probably a very difficult question. It's like, okay, you got the Eagles in the 49ers the other two best teams. No one would dispute that. Do you think the Seahawks are the third best team in the NFC or would you go someone else right now on paper?

Oh, that's a good question. I even though I didn't like the draft. I think Detroit's kind of in that mix. I think Dallas is in that mix as well.

Two straight 12 win seasons. I think the Dallas Cowboys are underrated both at coach and at GM with Jerry and his family there. But yeah, I mean Seahawks are right there, top five, maybe throw Minnesota in there a little bit too. Yeah, it's crazy town in the NFC. Value-wise, when you look at guys that didn't go in the first round, who are some guys that you thought were just tremendous picks by some teams?

Yeah, Levis is probably one, of course, falling there. Michael Mayer as well, I thought was the player that should have gone in round one. But good value in round two. Charbonnet, to your point, I think will be really good for the Seahawks just because their number one running back will eventually get injured as they always do. And he'll slide right in there and do well. I think Joey Porter Jr. going in the top of the second round to his dad's team of Steelers are very good as well.

Those guys that slide out of round one that are right there are good. And I think Porter's going to be a good player for the Steelers. Dalton Kincaid was my favorite tight end in this draft class. Him landing in Buffalo, I know some people go it doesn't really make sense, but I like that pick.

How about yourself? Yeah, hopefully he made some money off it too because I think he was favored to be the first tight end take and then he became a big underdog at the end there. Buffalo makes a lot of sense. I think they weren't enamored with Dawson Knox anymore, which is rightfully so since he struggled last year. So they bring him into the mix. He's going to get targets because after Stephon Diggs, that wide receiver position has been disappointing for them for a couple years.

They're running now. So he'll get some options there and everybody's trying to emulate what the Chiefs do with Travis Kelce and Kincaid has that kind of skill set. Last thing I'll ask you, I thought Stetson Bennett was going to get drafted.

Eric Eager from summer sports. I would have never thought he would have got drafted in the fourth round. What do you think the ceiling is for Stetson Bennett in the NFL? He just reached it. Being drafted in the fourth round is the best it's ever going to get for Stetson Bennett, I think.

Yeah, I did not get that one. Congratulations Stetson, wow! The Rams' average age of their draft class is something like 24 and a half, 25 years old, which I don't know what they're doing over there. There's not a ton of talent on offense, so if he ever had to play, I think it's going to be ugly, but good for him. I think he clearly was a very good college quarterback and obviously won two titles.

I just don't see it for him, but I think teams are all looking for that next Brock Purdy, unfortunately, which is why we saw guys like the Penn State quarterback. Sean Clifford, yeah. Sean Clifford gets taken too, which was a surprise to me.

He's Eric Eager from Sumer Sports. Eric, we appreciate the time as always. Thank you. Hey, thanks for having me on. Take care.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-01 22:59:34 / 2023-05-01 23:07:52 / 8

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