Eagles' Uncertainty Could Steer Philly To Penn State's Chop Robinson in NFL Draft

Eagles’ Uncertainty Could Steer Philly To Penn State’s Chop Robinson in NFL Draft

There is plenty of uncertainty swirling around Philadelphia Eagles star pass rusher Hasson Reddick, who is set to enter the league year on the final year of a three-year, $45 million contract.

Chop Robinson declaring for NFL Draft

Reddick, a Camden native and former Temple star, has objectively outperformed that deal after two consecutive double-digit sack seasons in Philadelphia and reportedly wants top-of-the-market money while the Eagles want to lessen his scheduled team-high $21.877 million cap charge.

To better gauge where Reddick fits into the league’s thinking, the Eagles gave his agent, Tory Dandy, permission to seek a trade, something Reddick wanted on the record wasn’t his idea.

It’s a calculated gamble on Howie Roseman’s part and things could still work out positively with Reddick returning to his hometown team.

“Without a doubt, I think there’s always a message being sent and I know that {Roseman has] got some meaning behind it when he allows somebody to do something like that,” former NFL GM Randy Mueller told SI.com’s Eagles Today. “You might want the other teams and I’m not saying this in Reddick’s case and I agree he’s a good player but sometimes you would let a player shop his own wares to maybe bring back the message of ‘I really wasn’t aware that some people didn’t think I was the greatest thing in the world.’

“So you want others to deliver that message as part of the negotiation. You don’t have to be the bad guy.”

chop robinson penn state

The other aspect is the market itself which is flush with edge rushers.

“The other thing is when you look at free agency this year there are a bunch of really good edge players a bunch of guys who do exactly what Haason Reddick does so I think there’s always options out there and a smart GM like Howie is always gonna play those cards,” Mueller said.

If someone is willing to pay Reddick an average annual value near $25M and surrender draft compensation that is fair market value in the Eagles’ eyes, all of a sudden edge rusher has to be thrown into the mix at the top of the draft for Philadelphia as well.

Always a premium position, the 2024 draft group is not terribly deep with only two prospects clean enough to get top-15 grades from most, Alabama’s Dallas Turner and Florida State’s Jared Verse.

A third, UCLA’s Laiatu Latu, has the skill set to be that but some teams could be scared off by neck fusion surgery that threatened Latu’s career at one point.

If Philadelphia needs help in a post-Reddick world at No. 22 overall, it might come down to Penn State’s Chop Robinson, who helped himself as expected at the NFL scouting combine.

Robinson delivered a 4.48 in the 40-yard dash at Lucas Oil Stadium at 6-foot-2 and 254 pounds. Meanwhile, his 1.54 10-yard split time was one of the best marks for a player his size over the past two decades.

His athletic ability was not matched by off-the-charts production at PSU. Robinson finished with four sacks and 7 1/2 tackles for loss last season for the Nittany Lions and missed three games with a concussion.

Draft evaluation is about projection at the next level and the recent history of Penn State football has delivered pass rushers like Micah Parsons and Odafe Oweh, who didn’t jump off the page production-wise in college.

A post-Reddick world would leave the Eagles with Josh Sweat, Brandon Graham, Nolan Smith, and futures players Julian Okwara and Terrell Lewis on the edge barring moves in free agency.

Robinson, a Maryland transfer, would add much-needed upside to that group and understands he’s got work to do to reach his potential.

“I’ve just been trying to work on my hands and build muscle memory,” Robinson said at the combine. “I feel like I was way more inconsistent last year in using my hands, just relying on my speed. So I’ve been working on that, being consistent with my hands and building muscle memory.”

Robinson can envision the kind of player he wants to become.

“I’d say a guy who can get off the ball, a guy with some speed, a guy that can bend crazy,” he said. “I think that makes the best pass rusher, a guy that can bend and use his hands.”

Eagles’ All-Pro right tackle Lane Johnson often talks about bend around the edge as the most important tool a pass rusher can have and Robinson believes he’s ahead of the curve there.

“I’d definitely say my bend,” Robinson said when asked about his top trait. “Being able to dip my shoulder and lead with my hands and still use my speed. So I’d say I’m best with that and that’s not normal to see. “

One pro scout specifically mentioned Robinson as a potential fit for the Eagles but wouldn’t be the favorite.

“Just based on their track record I think a pass rusher is in the mix,” the scout said. “Laiatu Latu or Chop Robinson. I keep going back to [Robinson] as a potential candidate for the Eagles. However, I do not rule out trading up with Howie Roseman. [Toldeo Cornerback] Quinyon Mitchell could be the guy in that scenario.”

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