The NFL Draft, a time of the year that is typically all about joy and newfound hope for football fans, it’s often ended up as a frustrating experience for Philadelphia Eagles fans under the guidance of longtime executive Howie Roseman. Regularly regarded as one of the worst drafting general managers in the league, Roseman has had a fair share of major draft blunders.
While fans may point to the likes of Andre Dillard and Jalen Reagor as the team’s more recent draft misses, there’s plenty more to acknowledge dating back to the early 2010s – the beginning years of Howie Roseman’s reign over the Philadelphia Eagles franchise.
In a recent article on pff.com (Pro Football Focus), a list was put together of each team’s worst first-round pick since 2006. For the Eagles, it was none other than former Baylor offensive guard Danny Watkins, who’s currently working as a firefighter!
Here’s what PFF had to say about Watkins, arguably one of the biggest “busts” in Philadelphia sports history:
"PHILADELPHIA EAGLES: IOL DANNY WATKINS, BAYLOR (NO. 23 OVERALL IN 2011)Another team with a strong record in the first round [debatable!]. Still, Watkins was an odd pick at the time as a 26-year-old guard and didn’t pan out. He washed out of Philly in two years and the NFL in three."
Danny Watkins was the Philadelphia Eagles biggest draft mistake over the past 15 years, according to Pro Football Focus.
More from Section 215
- 4 Eagles on the Bubble Who Have Clinched Their 53-Man Roster Spots
- Best Pennsylvania Sportsbook Promos: Win $650 GUARANTEED Bonus PLUS $100 off NFL Sunday Ticket
- 3 Punters the Eagles Must Target to Replace Arryn Siposs
- Cowboys Trey Lance Trade Proves How Screwed They Are With Dak Prescott
- Devon Allen Took Britain Covey’s Job on Eagles
A philosophy that Howie Roseman has stuck to to this day, Roseman attempted to “build through the trenches” during the 2011 Draft. Following the selection of Brandon Graham the year prior, the Eagles were definitely operating under the premise that they were moving forward with two top-tier young linemen to build around for the future. Graham ended up being a massive success, and Watkins not so much. So is the manner of the drafting process in professional football.
It’s worth mentioning that Andy Reid, who was still the Eagles head coach at the time, was the one with final say over a majority of personnel-related decisions, similar to how Chip Kelly operated the team during his brief run as Eagles head coach. It’s unclear who between Reid and Roseman was the driving factor in drafting Watkins 23rd overall – I’m sure both would prefer to say the other.
Regardless, the Philadelphia Eagles collectively decided to select Watkins in the first round that year, and it’s still being talked about as one of the franchise’s biggest draft blunders to this day.
The likes of Cameron Jordan, Mark Ingram, and Cameron Hayward all went just a few picks after Watkins that year.