The Philadelphia Eagles traded out of the first round and selected just five players overall in the 2018 NFL draft. Still, they were able to get solid production out of their top two choices and may have found a gem in the final round.
Grade: Above average
Best rookie: Tight end Dallas Goedert had little issue transitioning from South Dakota State to the pros. Taken in the second round for his playmaking ability, Goedert finished the regular season with 33 catches for 334 yards and four touchdowns while playing 48 percent of the snaps, and proved a willing and effective blocker. He and Zach Ertz should make for the top tight end duo in the league moving forward. Corner Avonte Maddox, a fourth-round selection, deserves some ink as well. He has started at three different positions (outside corner, safety, slot) and helped stabilize the secondary following a slew of injuries.
Most improved rookie: Jordan Mailata. He didn’t play a snap, but his development behind the scenes has the coaching staff bullish on his future. Mailata, the former Australian rugby player, didn’t even know what a first down was last offseason, but the Eagles saw immense talent in his 6-foot-8, 346-pound frame and selected him in the seventh round. Offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland has found a willing workman in Mailata, who has grown leaps and bounds and was even active for a couple games this year. He could be the left tackle of the future. Mailata finished the season on injured reserve with a stress fracture in his back.
Jury is still out on …: Defensive end Josh Sweat. The fourth-round pick out of Florida State got a little taste of on-field action, playing 68 snaps before being placed on injured reserve with an ankle injury in December. He has a lot of natural ability but needs to prove that he can stay healthy.
Undrafted rookie evaluation: RB Josh Adams out of Notre Dame worked his way into the Eagles rotation and all the way up to the top of the depth chart at one point with Jay Ajayi and Darren Sproles on the shelf. He ended up being their leading rusher (511 yards, 3 TDs). The local product shook off early injury issues and solidified his place on the roster.