Since he became Head Coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, Chip Kelly has been under scrutiny. Will his “College Offense” work in the NFL? Can he make the transition from College to the Pros? and managing NFL players is different than coaching college kids. One thing I learned very quickly was, trust Chip Kelly.
Coach Kelly has said that he likes a certain type of player and he builds his teams to fit his vision of what a championship team looks like. So when the Philadelphia Eagles released former wide receiver DeSean Jackson, I was not very surprised, in fact I agree with the decision wholeheartedly. I realize that Jackson had a career year last season but as an Eagles fan think about the situation like this:
DeSean Jackson is an electrifying play maker who can “take the top off” of an NFL Defense. When you dig deeper, his release becomes a little easier to swallow. Jackson is a one trick pony of sorts. He can burn you and if your defense doesn’t respect that, Jackson will blow right by you, but what about the rest of his game? Jackson has never been a reliable inside the numbers receiver, his route running is sub-par, he rarely runs routes in traffic and if he does he isn’t the type of player to sacrifice his body to catch the ball. The new mentality Coach Kelly is bringing to the Eagles is one of professionalism both on and off the field and he demands his players take their craft seriously.
The 2014 NFL Draft brought some of the most talented young wide receivers to hit the NFL in years and the Eagles drafted one of the most polished of the group. Jordan Matthews was an absolute steal in the 2nd round and Coach Kelly drafted a player that fits his mold of what a NFL wide receiver should be. Matthews has already been turning heads this off season and he looks to be much more mature than most NFL Rookies. Matthews has also recently decided to use his “free time” to workout with star NFL receivers Calvin Johnson, Demaryius Thomas and A.J. Green so he could learn from the best. That is absolutely something I want to hear from a rookie wide receiver coming into Philadelphia.
By now you should have Matthews’ stats memorized but just in case you need a refresher, the 6’3”, 212lb wide receiver out of Vanderbilt University is the Southeastern Conference’s all-time leader in receptions (262) and receiving yards (3,759). Matthews earned All-America honors and first-team All-SEC recognition among other awards and recognitions. Matthews studied Eagles game tape prior to his pre-draft workout with the Eagles and is bringing his hard working attitude to the Eagles locker room. While Coach Kelly says Matthews will start in the slot receiving position, I fully expect him to move to an outside position within this year because of his outstanding skill set .
The Philadelphia Eagles drafted a wide receiver that has really nice size, great speed, solid technique and by most standards has displayed a very mature attitude early in his NFL career. From everything I have read and seen, Jordan Matthews is my very early pre-season bet to win Offensive Rookie of the Year award. I don’t believe the Philadelphia Eagles will miss DeSean Jackson and will soon be chanting ‘Matthews’ instead.