By Sheil Kapadia
Was the 2009 draft a success for the Eagles?
Seems like a simple enough question, but in reality, it's a little more complex.
The Eagles selected Jeremy Maclin in the first round with the 19th overall selection. At this point, that pick looks like a home run. Maclin had a good rookie season and is the Eagles' leading receiver this year with 820 yards. He also leads the Birds with eight receiving touchdowns.
Among wide receivers taken in the '09 draft, Maclin trails only the Giants' Hakeem Nicks in receptions. He's also second in receiving yards behind Pittsburgh's Mike Wallace. Maclin and Wallace are tied for second behind Nicks with eight receiving touchdowns apiece.
Earlier Tuesday, I wrote about LeSean McCoy, who the Eagles selected in the second round. Among running backs taken in the '09 draft, McCoy is first in rushing yards, rushing touchdowns and yards per carry.
Again, another home run.
But beyond the top two picks, it gets interesting. The Eagles had six more selections. In order: tight end Cornelius Ingram, cornerback/safety Macho Harris, tackle Fenuki Tupou, wide receiver Brandon Gibson, guard Paul Fanaika and linebacker Moise Fokou.
Of that group, three are no longer with the Eagles: Harris, Gibson and Fanaika.
Harris was released after starting last season at free safety and has since caught on with the Redskins.
Gibson was traded to the Rams. He's contributed for them with 40 catches for 425 yards.
And Fanaika is on the Browns' practice squad.
Two players are on the Eagles' practice squad: Ingram and Tupou.
And Fokou is the Eagles' starting strong-side linebacker.
Given the potential that Maclin and McCoy have shown, the '09 draft probably has to be viewed as a success regardless of what happens with the other players. Those are two guys with Pro Bowl ceilings. If Maclin and McCoy get to that point, the Eagles did well.
Ingram, Fokou and Tupou are still unknowns. Ingram was cut after training camp but has since returned. It would seem that he's a longshot to have a future with the Birds, but the organization doesn't want to completely give up on him. I'd be lying if I told you I know what to expect from Tupou. And Fokou has been solid, but not spectacular at the strong-side spot.
It's still early, and conventional wisdom says you don't judge a draft until three years after the fact, but that's where things stand right now with the Eagles' '09 selections.