Before Jordan Matthews was to meet with the Eagles, he went into the film study room at Vanderbilt where the Commodores had four cut-ups of Chip Kelly's Eagles offense. "I watched a couple of those films from last year to kind of get a taste for it," Matthews said. If the Eagles hit on their second-round selection on Friday night, Matthews is sure to get a plateful as the team's newest wide receiver. The Birds had an obvious need at the position after releasing DeSean Jackson in late March, and while Matthews won't replace the former Eagle on the outside, per se, there will be obvious comparisons. "There's no pressure," Matthews said about following Jackson. "I wish the best for DeSean and his future endeavors with the Washington Redskins. But I have to go in and be the best Jordan Matthews I can be and not worry about that." The Eagles traded up 12 spots from the 54th overall pick to the 42d to get Matthews. They gave the Titans their fourth-round selection (122d overall) along with their second-rounder. But after the team added a third-round pick the night before after moving back from No. 22 to 26, Kelly said the team had the luxury to be aggressive. Their first third round pick (83d overall) was dealt to the Texans for fourth- and fifth-round selections - both the first in each round, which will be held Saturday. With the second pick (86th overall) the Eagles selected another receiver and one Kelly knows well - Josh Huff (6-2, 206) of Oregon. Huff played three seasons under Kelly and had his best year, numbers-wise, in 2013, catching 62 passes for 1,140 yard and 12 touchdowns. The Eagles had two receivers they targeted in the second round - Matthews and Southern Cal's Marqise Lee - according to Kelly. When Lee went to the Jaguars at No. 39, Kelly and general manager Howie Roseman acted fast before a run on receivers. A total of seven wideouts went in the second round. Matthews is the most prolific receiver in Southeastern Conference history, having finished his four-year collegiate career with 262 catches for 3,759 yards. He caught 112 passes for 1,477 yards and seven touchdowns facing the toughest defenses in the country last season. He played all over the map in Vanderbilt's scheme, but Kelly said Matthews will start out primarily in the slot for the Eagles, essentially replacing the departed Jason Avant. "The one thing he does is catch the ball in traffic," Kelly said. "He made an unbelievable amount of contested catches. He has such a wing span and will go up and get it. . . . We've got Jeremy Maclin on one side and [Riley Cooper] on the other side, and then you throw him inside." Matthews has good size (6-foot-3, 212 pounds, 33-1/4-inch arms) and ran the 40-yard dash in 4.46 seconds at the combine. But Kelly chose to focus more on his new receiver's desire than his size, and it was difficult to not think he was indirectly referencing one of Jackson's few receiving flaws.
Eagles go for a wide receiver with their second pick
Philly.com | May 10