We all miss Brian Dawkins. Many miss his intensity. Many miss his leadership. Personally, I miss watching Dawkins lay the truck stick on anything in his path. The Eagles have lacked a player who can come up with a big hit since Dawkins left.
If the Eagles want to add a player who can lay a hit, they’ll have to consider Louisville safety Calvin Pryor in the first round. The dude can hit.
Pryor stands at 5-11 and 207 pounds and recorded a 4.58 second 40-yard dash at this year’s NFL Combine. He doesn’t have amazing top end speed, but when you see him on the field, he closes the gap between him and the ball carrier very quickly. He comes with a full head of steam tackles aggressively. Some view this as a bad thing at times but it’s something I can live with. These type of hits can force turnovers and can have an impact on the momentum of the game.
Although his tackling is the thing that stands out most, he also has pretty solid ball skills. He can sit back in center field and cover the field. His instincts seem to be very strong and he has no problem in going up and getting the ball.
Check out these highlights of Pryor, via NFLDraftGeek.com.
Pryor is viewed by many as the top safety prospect in this year’s draft. He, along with HaHa Clinton-Dix, are the two prospects that have set themselves apart from the rest of the safeties in their class. However, Pryor is a guy that many think will still be on the board at 22.
There’s no doubt that Pryor is the type of player that can come in and start from day one. His versatility allows a defensive coordinator to line him up all over the field. He can play in coverage but also has the ability to come down in the box and support the run.
The safety position is a glaring hole for the Eagles. As it stands, there’s no player on the roster who is a guarantee to start in 2014. Even if the Eagles add a starter through free agency, it doesn’t take away from them potentially drafting another safety early in the draft. They need a lot of help in the secondary.
If Pyror is on the board at 22, I think it would be very difficult for the Eagles to pass him up. I understand the best player available mentality, but at some point you have to add positional need to the equation. For the Eagles to pass on Pyror, I think there would have to be another player left on the board that they are extremely high on.
There’s no guarantee that he’ll be there at 22 as he’ll likely be the first safety off the board. However, if he’s there when the Eagles pick, I don’t think there’s any denying that he would be a great addition to a defensive unit that needs improvement.