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Eagles Workout RB, DT

Eagles Look into Two Prospects
By Lance Epstein

According to National Football Post's Aaron Wilson is reporting that defensive tackle Brian Price has scheduled a visit with the Eagles.

Price (6-1, 303) is not as heralded as fellow defensive tackles Ndamukong Suh or Gerald McCoy, but is considered to by many experts to be a first-rounder and top five at his position. ESPN's Scout Inc. ranks him as the 4th-best tackle and the 33rd-best player in the entire draft.

At UCLA, Price registered 12 sacks, 92 tackles, four forced fumbles and one interception. During his junior season with the Bruins, he won the Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year as he recorded seven sacks. However, what intrigues the Eagles the most is that Price is a one-gap pass rusher, which fits the Eagles system very well.

Currently, the Eagles have Brodrick Bunkley and Mike Patterson as the starters, but neither possess the ability to generate a consistent pass rush up the middle like Price. Price has a collection of pass rushing moves and uses his hands extremely well to get around offensive lineman and to the quarterback.

Another reason the Eagles could be looking into Price is if a new collective bargaining agreement is implemented in 2011, Bunkley will become a unrestricted free agent. Joe Banner and Andy Reid might not want to pay him the money he could command in free agency.

The downside to Price is that he lacks the ideal size for the position. This often leads to him get pushed around by lineman on running plays. The first thing that the Eagles will have to do if they draft him is work on his lower body strength, so he can be a stout run-stopper.

Meanwhile, according to Chris Steuber of scouts.com the Eagles also worked out Southern Illinois running back Deji Karim today (Mach 31). In addition, the team will bring him to the NovaCare Center for a visit on April 6th and 7th (look for him to be draft by the Eagles in the fourth or fifth-round-- he is a typical Eagles RB).

You probably have not heard of the 5-9, 210 pound back, but not a lot of people heard of Brian Westbrook before the Eagles selected him out of Villanova. In fact, Karim has a lot more similarities between him and Westbrook than just coming out of a small school. He like Westbrook, he had a knee injury in college that cost him his entire 2008 season.

Furthermore, Karim is a dynamic receiver out of the backfield and can be used to
create mismatches against linebackers like Reid did with Westbrook. In his only season as a starter, he caught just 17 passes but they went for 212 yards (12.47 yards per catch). More astonishing than his receiving skills is that he ran for 1,694 yards and 18 touchdowns on only 240 carries as a starter.

While Karim did not receive an invitation to the combine, he has made his way on to team's draft boards by running a 4.37 40-yard dash at his Pro Day. Also at his Pro Day, he lifted 225-pounds 19 times, so he has the strength to be more than just a scat back. Additionally, he had recorded a 43-inche vertical and 10-foot-3-inche broad jump.

Espn.com ranks Karim as the 26th-best running back prospect, while Scouts.com has him at No. 15.

Even though Philadelphia signed Mike Bell this offseason and have LeSean McCoy, do not be surprised if the Eagles still take a running back later in the draft. McCoy has the ability to be a featured back, but he is still relatively unproven and showed signs of fatigue late in the season. As for Bell, he is only here on a one-year contract so he could leave at season's end.

Karim possesses the receiving skills and elusiveness that the Eagles look for in their running backs. Moreover, the Eagles would not have to invest a high round pick on him and he could wind up being a diamond in the rough just like Westbrook. If you have not seen this kid play, look at his highlights, he will remind you of old No. 36.

Interview with Karim

SIU's highlights...He makes a ton of plays in this video


  1. Price seems like a very good player for the Eagles to go after, and I would say if he is available in the fourth to go ahead and pull the trigger. Karim seems like a guy that you keep in touch with to sign him minutes after the draft and hoped you pulled a sleeper who can be a solid situational back for you.

  2. I have heard Karim is going to go somewhere between the 4th round and 6th. He is also a returner. But those highlights were mighty impressive