Danny Watkins’ high point of his NFL career was draft day with the commish. It was all downhill from there for the firefighter.
By Lewis Gould
If you are still in the CHIP’S A DOPE camp, you are in the Amen Corner with Ray Didinger, Glen (Speak No Evil Toward Any Owner Unless It Is Josh Harris) Macnow and Reuben Frank.
They believe Kelly is just dying to go back to college and that his method of blowing up the Eagles — who haven’t won a playoff game since 2008 — is doomed to fail.
Their orthodoxy is:
YOU CAN’T BUILD THROUGH FREE AGENCY, ONLY THE DRAFT — AND KELLY WILL MORTGAGE THE EAGLES’ FUTURE, IT WILL FAIL AND HE’LL GO BACK TO COLLEGE, WHERE HE FEELS MORE COMFORTABLE.
Forget the fact that the sainted Andy Reid and his acolytes Joe Banner and Howie Boy Roseman so screwed up the 2011 draft that it is still affecting the team.
Read what Mark Eckel wrote today on NJ.com:
Two of the Eagles’ three biggest needs are guard on offense and safety on defense — wide receiver would be the other.
Now go back four years to the 2011 draft when the Eagles addressed both of those needs with their first two selections.
In the first round the Eagles, under the watch of then head coach Andy Reid and then general manager Howie Roseman, selected Danny Watkins, a guard out of Baylor. In the second they stayed close to home and took Jaiquawn Jarrett, a safety from Temple.
Both picks were disasters and why the team is still in need of both positions as they head to next month’s 2015 draft.
Watkins, a hockey player/firefighter from Canada, just didn’t seem like football mattered a lot to him. He played in 23 games over the span of two years and was gone after the 2012 season.
He spent a year as a backup in Miami and is now out of the league.
That was a bad first-round pick.
Jarrett, who was a reach in the second round — some teams had him graded in the sixth, or even seventh, round — played just 13 games over two seasons and was also let go after the 2012 season.
He signed with the Jets and actually had some moments, but not what you wanted from a second-round pick.
Imagine if Watkins had panned out just a little and became a serviceable starter; that’s not asking too much from a first-round pick. It would be one less hole for Chip Kelly and his staff to have to fill this offseason. It would also be a pretty good line with Jason Peters and Lane Johnson at tackle and Jason Kelce at center.
Same goes for Jarrett. If he would have been a decent second-round selection, he would be the starter next to Malcolm Jenkins. And the secondary would be in better shape than it is now, as the team looks once again looks for a safety in the draft.