Philadelphia Eagles – Dante Fowler, Jr. (Outside Linebacker, Florida)
Philadelphia has a need for linebackers given Casey Matthews’ inconsistent play and Demeco Ryans’ age and injury history. Specifically, Philadelphia needs a linebacker who can help stop the explosive running backs of the NFC East. Dante Fowler, Jr. is more of a raw pass rusher, but he has strength and quickness that will translate to the NFL. Fowler routinely chased down running backs on the edge to prevent extra yardage.
Cincinnati Bengals – Jalen Collins (Cornerback, LSU)
The Bengals have a tendency to draft cornerbacks, but this practice is sensible given the receivers in their division. Leon Hall is getting older, and Terence Newman is a free agent. Jalen Collins from LSU is a talented corner who has been compared to Terence Newman, so the Bengals could target him in the draft. Collins is a big, fast corner who can cover receivers and track down running backs. While Collins only has 10 career starts, he will benefit from the teaching of Leon Hall and the veteran defenders.
Football, LSU vs. Iowa, Outback Bowl, 1/1/14
Pittsburgh Steelers – Marcus Peters (Cornerback, Washington) The Steelers suffered through injuries and poor defensive back play to start 2014 before ultimately improving to end the season. However, both Ike Taylor and Brice McCain are free agents, giving the Steelers very few cornerbacks on the roster. Marcus Peters is a talented corner who compares favorably to Aquib Talib because of his competitiveness and press coverage abilities. Peters does have some emotional issues and conflicts with coaching, but the Steelers coaching staff can take care of those problems. Head coach Mike Tomlin will get the most out of Peters while helping fix those behavioral problems.
Detroit Lions – Danny Shelton (Defensive Tackle, Washington)
Detroit has four defensive tackles headed to free agency, including Nick Fairley and Ndamukong Suh, so finding another defensive tackle is a priority. Danny Shelton from Washington spent his collegiate career at nose tackle, but he did assist in chasing down running backs on stretch plays. Shelton’s size and strength would help stop Eddie Lacy, Matt Forte, and Adrian Peterson.
Arizona Cardinals – Vic Beasley (Linebacker, Clemson)
The Cardinals already have a fearsome defense, but they could benefit from more pass rushers. John Abraham is old, and Daryl Washington missed the entire 2014 season with substance abuse issues. Vic Beasley is a pure pass rusher who has been compared to Bruce Irvin. The Cardinals could use his quickness and spin move in an effort to contain Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson. Beasley has the quickness to track down those more athletic quarterbacks.