Philadelphia Eagles tied to Joe Mixon entering NFL draft, other pick predictions and more news
Today’s Philadelphia Eagles links take a closer look at rumors connecting the Birds to Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon before the NFL draft begins Thursday and at other players the Eagles could potentially grab early.
Mixon was videotaped punching Amelia Molitor in the face in 2014, breaking several bones, and was suspended from Oklahoma for a season. He returned in 2015 and was one of the most productive and complete running backs in the country for the Sooners over the past two years. His NFL draft status has been the topic of debate, especially when it comes to teams that need a running back — like the Eagles.
Last week, general manager Howie Roseman said it “doesn’t serve us any purpose” to reveal if the Eagles had Mixon on their draft board. On Monday morning, NJ.com reported Mixon — who reached a settlement in a civil suit — is indeed still on the Birds’ board. Both Roseman and Eagles vice president of player personnel Joe Douglas have spoken highly of Mixon. So where does that leave the Eagles, who have also been linked to Florida State’s Dalvin Cook — who also has his share of past off-the-field issues — and Stanford’s Christian McCaffrey at No. 14 in the first round?
Drafting Mixon clearly wouldn’t be a popular move in Philadelphia.
Here’s a quick selection from pieces by area writers who are critical of the potential move.
To be honest, the league would be happy if he just went away. If it were possible to keep him out – which the NFL did at the scouting combine – that would happen. But it isn’t possible, and the marketplace being what it is, a team will gulp and then draft Joe Mixon to represent its organization and its city.
Let’s hope it isn’t the Eagles and Philadelphia, and it would be nice if Lurie came out ahead of time and said it won’t be. It’s easy to be a social hero after the fact. This is a moment when it would be better if the team stood for something other than expediency. Just because they aren’t exactly tripping over their own Super Bowl trophies doesn’t mean that a bargain is really a bargain if it costs your self-respect.
The fact that the Eagles did roll the dice with Vick, fresh off a prison sentence for dogfighting-related charges, is a factor in this conversation. There was no bigger undertaking than bringing a star like Vick to a city like Philadelphia in a polarizing situation like that one. Owner Jeffrey Lurie, nudged by head coach Andy Reid, decided to make Philly the city where Vick would get his second chance, and all things considered, it was a successful venture.
The circumstances were different then, however, as Roseman pointed out Thursday.
As it often does, it will come down a team’s own research and philosophy, and how risk weighs against reward.
All things considered, the Eagles ought to consider this the wrong time and wrong place to bring Mixon in.
There is no such confusion here. We want to win football games. Period. We think Joe can help us do that.
We are not here to save Joe’s soul. We are not here to assist him in his overall adjustment to society. We will help him as long as he can help us. If he becomes a distraction for us – don’t you love that phrase, by the way, “becomes a distraction”? It’s just so versatile – we will cut him. We will not recommend that another team sign him. We will not help him find another job in another line of work.
If we were being altruistic here, if we truly believed in second chances, we would do that. We are not going to do that. We did not draft Joe so that he could get an education, so that he could grow as a human being. There’s no sheepskin coming. We drafted him to score touchdowns for us. We think Joe can do that.
This is professional football.
The NFL is a much different place than it was in early 2014. Mixon’s assault happened just days before the tape was released of then-Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice punching his now-wife in the head. Since then, the NFL has — let’s be real — bungled its way through several rounds of domestic violence legislation before coming to its current system of punishment under NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s personal conduct policy. In short, domestic violence will not be tolerated in the NFL. For 10 games. Unless it’s really bad. Or there’s a tape. Then it might be longer.
Or, unless the player was in college. Then it might only hurt his draft stock a round or two.
Granted, those are all voices outside of the organization, and it’s hard to tell which way the Eagles are leaning, thanks to Roseman’s coyness with the media. But the Eagles have shown a willingness to take chances on players with checkered pasts. Michael Vick comes to mind, as does Dorial Green-Beckham. And the praise Mixon has received from Roseman, Douglas and coach Doug Pederson makes the likelihood of Mixon landing in Philadelphia seem to be more of a possibility. And it will be another interesting turn in the offseason for the Eagles.
Here’s a look at the rest of the day’s Eagles news: