The third day of the NFL Draft started fast and started by continuing a trend of trades. The Jacksonville Jaguars traded the first pick of the day to the Philadelphia Eagles, who moved to the top of the fourth round to take USC quarterback Matt Barkley ahead of the Kansas City Chiefs. Many had been waiting for Barkley’s name to be called, and it seems about right to have it be the first name called in round four.
Barkley’s fall from the top was epic, but expected. He turned in a pretty poor performance throughout the scouting process and teams began to question his ability to be an elite quarterback in the NFL. His arms strength has been questioned, his leadership has been questioned and he plummeted in the draft as a result.
But Chip Kelly had been looking for a quarterback and he traded ahead of old Eagles coach Andy Reid and the Kansas City Chiefs to draft Barkley. Many believe had Barkley made it to Reid with the 99th overall pick, Barkley would have been it.
At certain points in the early draft season, Barkley was being mocked as a potential No. 1 overall pick. But rather than hearing his name called first on the first day of the draft, he had it called first on the third day of the draft. Like Geno Smith though, Barkley could use his epic slide into the fourth round as motivation to become a better quarterback.
It’s too early to tell if he’ll pan out, but Barkley’s got an NFL home now and his path to redeeming himself lies before him.