Sapp Out To Prove Teams Wrong
By Lance Epstein
One of the best picks that the Eagles made of the third day of the draft might have been the selection of Clemson defensive end Ricky Sapp with the 134th overall pick in the fifth-round (third pick in the round).
Sapp (6-4, 252) was a pleasant surprise for the Eagles and their fans considering he had a second round grade according to most draft experts. One of the reasons Sapp fell was not due to his on the field talent, but because he tore his knee during his junior season.
Still, Sapp has the athleticism, speed, agility and natural instincts to be one of the steals of the entire 2010 NFL Draft. At Clemson he played the bandit position, which had him playing in coverage like a linebacker but also using his pass rushing ability to get to the quarterback. That position is very similar to the Eagles joker position where Jevon Kearse excelled at in his time as a Eagle.
Fans should be excited about this pick up. He might be another gem in the fifth-round like when the Eagles found Trent Cole, Brent Celek, Jason Avant, Correll Buckhalter and Omar Gaither.
Here are some of his quotes from his conference call:
On bandit position in college:
"Well it is more like a linebacker cause we dropped back into coverage, but also rush the passer."
On being more of a pass rusher or dropping into coverage:
"I think about even doing both."
What the Eagles told him about being a linebacker or Defensive end:
"Well I am not sure. I am pretty sure that it is going to be rushing the passer because that's what I do best. I am just excited and ready to go to work."
On not going higher and the draft process:
"Man it has been a little frustrating, but I am just excited that the Eagles took pride and took me. So I am excited to be an Eagle."
On why he fell:
"You know what I am not sure what scared them away. I went to the combine and showed them pretty much that my knee was healthy. So I don't know what they are scared of, but I know the Eagles took a chance on me so I am out to prove everybody else wrong."
On his knee injury:
"Well I tore my ACL in November of 2008. I got surgery on the 11th. Came back and played a full season at 60 percent and probably should have sat out a couple of games until it got right. But I wanted to play so it kind of hurt me a little bit, but I guess that is why I went kind of low. But everything works out for the best, I know God has a plan all along so I am excited to be in the situation I am in."
On competing with a lot of other young guys:
"I look at it as a great opportunity. You know they got Brandon Graham who is a great player and a couple of other defensive ends so I think we all can bring the pressure and get to the quarterback as well."
On knowledge of the Eagles defense:
"I met with the coaches at the combine. Don't know much about the defense. I know Trent Cole is one of the best d-linemen. I am just excited to learn from him and go to work."