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Jaelen Strong, Landon Collins could be options for Eagles

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It seems like everyone believes Chip Kelly and the Philadelphia Eagles will at least make a run at trading up in the 2015 NFL Draft in order to select Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota.


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If the team decides it will take too much though, they'll still have plenty of options at the No. 20 overall pick in the first round and could Kelly could even stay in the Pac-12 when it comes to the selection too boot.

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"How about Jaelen Strong from Arizona State? That's somebody (Kelly) would be familiar with given all those contacts in the Pac-12," NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah said on NFL Network's "Path to the Draft." "Doesn't create a lot of separation when you study him, but he's one of those guys who even if he's covered, he's open because he can go up and make contested plays and has a big catch radius. Jaelen Strong could be an interesting option for them at No. 20."

Strong's draft projection is within range of the Eagles' pick, and they could stand to upgrade their wide receiving corps with an early-round pick after losing Jeremy Maclin to free agency. Strong isn't quite a player of Maclin's caliber, but he does add the element of size and strength at the position -- two traits Kelly values in his receivers.

If the Eagles choose not to upgrade their offense early in the draft, there could be an interesting defensive option in Alabama safety Landon Collins.

"I love the way he plays down in the box, but his range is a little bit undervalued," Jeremiah said. "He can play in that high safety role and roam."

"Safety is the one, glaring need," NFL Media analyst Brian Baldinger said. "If (Collins) is there he could fill a big, big void. We watched him on tape at Alabama, and you see a sure tackler."

Given the high-powered division the Eagles are in, adding a roaming, hard-hitting safety like Collins would be a gift if he's still available at the 20th pick.

Either way, the team certainly will have options to upgrade on both sides of the ball.

You can follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter at @BryanDFischer.

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