Originally posted on cover32 - Eagles  |  Last updated 2/10/14
Don’t be shocked if the Eagles draft a running back with their first-round pick. Sorry, I had to. Yeah, that’s not happening. I understand that the Eagles value roster competition and the idea of drafting the best available player, but they wouldn’t take a running back right off the bat. Later in the draft? Well, that’s a different story. Behind LeSean McCoy, the Eagles’ two backup running backs in 2013 — Bryce Brown and Chris Polk — combined to run for only 412 yards. Granted, McCoy was healthy all year and was rarely taken off the field. But the other two had their chances, too. Even after two seasons, Brown remains an intriguing prospect. He was once the No. 1 overall high schooler in the country, one spot ahead of backup quarterback Matt Barkley. He has some potential to unlock, but McCoy has obviously gotten in the way. When chances do come though, moments have rarely been seized by Brown. On 75 carries in 2013, he ran for zero or less yards 15 times. Polk has battled injuries throughout his Eagles career, but played fairly well when he had chances in 2013. He ran for an average of 8.9 yards per touch on 11 carries last season. He’s fresh off shoulder surgery, which hopefully has healed some of his problems. Both guys have yet to prove their worth as a bruising, third down back. For this, the Eagles could be in the market for one late in the draft. Or a guy who’s more polished. Or a playmaker. Ah, who knows. Here are some names to keep an eye on come draft day. James White, Wisconsin Don’t let his 5’9″ frame fool you — White is not afraid to pick up tough yardage by running between the tackles. He can catch passes out of the backfield and block as well, which is something that Chip Kelly appreciates. While at Wisconsin, White split carries with Melvin Gordon (who ended up staying in school). His workload has been lighter than some of the other guys in the draft. De’Anthony Thomas, Oregon Kelly loves guys who are good in space and can make plays. He probably also loves guys he once coached, too. If Thomas slips to the middle rounds, don’t be shocked if the Birds pull the trigger. Thomas is a playmaker. For starters, he would help out in the return game from the start. Chip would find a way to utilize him on offense among the bevy of weapons Nick Foles already has. James Wilder Jr., Florida State Now, here’s the prototypical big back the Eagles could target. Wilder is massive (6’2′”, 229) and runs like it. He will never be a primary back at the next level, but he could step in to take short yardage carries and absorb a lot of hits. Like White, Wilder Jr. also wasn’t worn down a ton in college. Florida State operated with three running backs last season, and Wilder Jr. only carried the ball 81 times. Philadelphia clearly isn’t in the market for a franchise running back. However, head over to cover 32′s main page later today and check out the top 10 running backs in the 2014 NFL draft to see how the rest of the group rounds out. Make sure you follow @cover32_PHI and @cover32_NFL on Twitter for all the latest breaking news, columns, blogs and features from the Eagles and the entire NFL. You may also be interested in:Could the Eagles target a running back in the draft?Where are they now: Former Eagles quarterbacksWeekly Rewind: How the Eagles will address QB; More mocks
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Dion Lewis signed extension to repay Patriots for giving him chance

Report: South Carolina to start Perry Orth at QB vs. LSU

Mark Giordano: Flames’ effort in opener was 'unacceptable'

LeBron James says he’s in same class as Michael Jordan

Report: Some Texans players have already 'checked out' on coaches

WATCH: Washington scores against USC with trick play


Andre Johnson, Colts down Texans in key division win

Claude Julien: Illegal hit on Patrice Bergeron warrants ‘further consequences’

Foster’s return to game after head injury raises questions

Lions owner Martha Ford is not happy with NFL about blown call on MNF

New details on Duke Williams dismissal

Baylor’s RG3 statue vandalized by TCU fans

Name every QB to play in the NFL at the age of 40

Matt Hasselbeck was ‘on his death bed’ before Texans game

WATCH: Jets' Burmistrov lays dirty hit on Bruins' Bergeron

Report: Cowboys ban filming offense in practice with Patriots next on schedule

Maryland HC Randy Edsall responds on Twitter to firing reports

Pacquiao says he is in talks with Mayweather about rematch

Wisconsin looks to bounce back against Nebraska

Jack Del Rio: Raiders will go after Peyton Manning, want to ‘take him down’

Charles Barkley will guest star on 'The NFL Today'

Week 5 NFL power rankings

Poor Royals grounds crew member gets eaten by tarp

Vin Scully to miss the entire postseason; will return in 2016

Colin Kaepernick’s contract structure protects team from overpaying struggling QB

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Name every QB to play in the NFL at the age of 40

Week 5 NFL power rankings

Vin Scully to miss the entire postseason

Putin celebrates birthday by scoring seven goals in hockey game

"Friday Night Lights" writer calls Chip Kelly a fraud

Women in sports this week: Is this 2015 or 1965?

Three reasons each AL team can win the pennant

Garrett addresses Hardy's comments about Gisele

Five outrageous predictions for NFL Week 5

Rex makes players do push-ups in practice after penalty calls

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker