A FIRST-ROUND linebacker never was a real strong possibility for the Eagles in this week's NFL draft, and it became less likely yesterday when they sent a fifth-round pick to Denver in a three-way trade that brought linebacker Ernie Sims from Detroit to Philadelphia.
(The Lions got tight end Tony Scheffler and a seventh-round pick from the Broncos.)
It was clear from the Eagles' reaction that they see Sims as a potential starter here, which probably means the streak of not drafting a linebacker in the first round since Jerry Robinson in 1979 will remain intact. Sims is a first-round linebacker, just not one drafted by the Eagles. He was the ninth overall pick in 2006 out of Florida State, and was productive his first three seasons despite all the chaos in Detroit, before injuries and a coaching change altered the way he was viewed last season.
"We've looked at Ernie Sims for a couple of years here. We've talked to Detroit on him. He's a fast, aggressive football player, fits our style of defense. We're excited to get him," Eagles general manager Howie Roseman said. Roseman called Sims "a starter in the National Football League" who would compete for a starting job here, presumably either on the weakside, where he was most of the time in Detroit, or on the strongside, where the Eagles finally abandoned the Chris Gocong project, trading him to Cleveland.
Source: Philly Daily News