Wake-Up Call: Why Matthews Fits the Mold

Jordan Matthews
You may have heard the story by now about how Jordan Matthews broke down four Eagles’ game tapes before heading to Philly for his official visit. Chip Kelly said he was armed with a notebook for his interview with the coaches “and came in with questions for us.” Equally impressive to Kelly was the receiver’s recall when some of his own tape came on. 

“Jordan Matthews could tell you the play that was being run before he ran it. We’d have the tape and he’d look at the screen and say, That is the Ole Miss game. I remember this. It’s 3rd and 13, here’s the play call. I ran a dig. You hit play and that’s exactly what happened,” he said. 

Howie Roseman offered this anecdote: At the Senior Bowl, Matthews was actually requesting film on the guys that he was going against, and would get up before dawn to study it.


"This guy, the level of determination he has, his work ethic, it's going to rub off on everyone.  He can do anything he wants as a person," said Roseman. "You leave meeting him, and he's as impressive a guy as I've ever met, really."

There was a wealth of talent at receiver in the 2014 draft class. Some say it was the deepest group ever. Choosing from such a stocked pool was largely about taste and fit. Kelly, as we're learning, puts a heavy emphasis on character make-up and intelligence. Matthews, a team captain who graduated from Vanderbilt with an economics degree in three-and-a-half years, appears to check those boxes.

On the field, the big attraction (other than the fact that, you know, he is the SEC's all-time leading receiver) was Matthews' ability to beat man coverage.  Kelly explained that defenses play a ton of man against them, largely because that's the best way to get lined up quickly in response to the up-tempo. It was a priority, then, to find receivers that could excel against that defense.

"The one thing he does is catch the ball in traffic," said Kelly of Matthews. "He made an unbelievable amount of contested catches. You know, he's got such a wing span and will go up and get it, and can play both inside and outside."

The plan is to start Matthews off inside. The head coach likes the idea of having a 6-3, 217-pound wideout working in the slot.

"In a league where sometimes people put smaller guys in the slot, we wanted to put a bigger guy in there," said Kelly. "I think that match‑up, if you're a smaller DB is going to play in the slot and have to match up with a 217 pound guy that can run 4.46."

WHAT YOU MISSED

The Eagles agreed to terms with Nebraska QB Taylor Martinez, whom the Birds are looking at as a defensive back or wide receiver.

A look at the team's other free agent signings. 

A pick-by-pick review of the Eagles' draft, courtesy of Sheil.

WHAT THEY'RE SAYING

Mel Kiper gave the Eagles a B-plus for their draft.

I thought Jordan Matthews would have made sense at No. 22, much less 42. I love that pick. Josh Huff offers underrated after-the-catch explosiveness -- he had 24 catches of 20-plus yards in 2013 -- has obvious familiarity with Kelly's methods and he's a guy who really competes and makes contested catches. Jaylen Watkins is a good value in Round 3, and was the first Florida CB off the board in a year where they have a few decent ones. Ed Reynolds is a player I thought could have been a second-round type had he stayed at Stanford another year, but he can give the Eagles a future potential starter and really anticipates well. Taylor Hart is another guy Kelly knows well, and could help the pass rush at some point. The Smith value was iffy, but I understand it, and they did a solid job thereafter.

Jimmy Kempski on the selection of Oregon receiver Josh Huff.

As noted above, the Eagles selected former Oregon Duck Taylor Hart in the 5th round. That's alarming. Are the Eagles taking the best players, or the players with whom Chip Kelly is most comfortable?

Maybe it's just a coincidence, as the Eagles have implied, but if indeed Kelly is wielding his influence over the draft to select players he knows well, does that narrow the field some? Bringing in former Oregon guys who you know will buy into your system and work hard during practice is fine for the practice squad or training camp filler, but when you're using extremely valuable draft resources for your former guys, they better be the best players available.

COMING UP

Plenty more to digest from the draft.

Be respectful of our online community and contribute to an engaging conversation. We reserve the right to ban impersonators and remove comments that contain personal attacks, threats, or profanity, or are flat-out offensive. By posting here, you are permitting Philadelphia magazine and Metro Corp. to edit and republish your comment in all media.

  • Daniel Norman Richwine

    That’s a. pretty mature attitude he has.

  • NickS1

    I think Kempski makes an excellent point, but I tend to think they may have been the best on their board. It’s not like the egregiously overdrafted Huff and Hart. Huff maybe a little but with him being selected toward the end of the 3rd when he could have been had int he 4th. But, it’s not awful, it’s just not who we all were thinking it would be.

    As for the graduating in 3.5 years, it gets overplayed and needs perspective. He took summer courses since he was there. It’s not like he was taking 6 courses every fall/spring, especially in the fall. That’s by no means a negative, it takes determination and maturity to endure the classes straight through like that, I just thought a little context to it is helpful.

    • Andy124

      Appreciate the context. I will say that taking classes every summer takes determination. Very easy to burn out doing things that way, speaking from experience.

      • NickS1

        Yeah, I know it as well. Definitely more about determination than intelligence.

    • ztom6

      Econ is not a soft major though and Vandy has a pretty good econ program. That’s pretty legit.

      • NickS1

        I’m not saying it is a soft major at all. It’s very difficult, especially at a great school like Vandy. Just noting that the 3.5 years isn’t a measure of intelligence by itself, but more about determination. It’s not a bad thing, just something I think gets over played in the valuation of his intelligence when it’s hard work and determination to go to school straight through.

        • cliff henny

          as econ major, can tell you 3.5 is very impressive, extremely impressive. you have to take math, managerial stats, accounting, finance, banking but economic courses too. i needed 140 credit to graduate while every other business degree needed 120. as economics, you almost can switch to any of those fields up to junior year and graduate in 4 yrs. you take many more business classes than say an accounting or marketing guy does, but many less general studies. it’s a huge net of business courses, and by graduating in less than 4 means he didnt stumble in any field. tell you, i started with 35, 4 made it, and accounting almost did me in (3 shots at advanced accounting 2, only econ and accounting majors had to take it). not saying econ is harder than physics or engineering, but those stay more focused in field.

          • NickS1

            Def wasn’t trying to take anything away from the kid’s intelligence or the difficulty of the major. Just noting that doing 15 in the fall, 15 in spring, and 12 in summer gets you 126 credits in 3 years and isn’t impossible. I think the intelligence bit is captured in that he graduated with an econ degree, and the determination/dedication comes in the time frame in which he did. All I was saying.

          • cliff henny

            if i were him, i’d still be introducing myself as Cliff ‘graduated in 3.5 yrs from Vandy in Econ’ Henny. what you are saying is mathmatically accurate, no doubt. but to me, it’s like saying to run sub 4,5 40, just have to run really fast. get the concept, but aint no way in god’s green earth i could do either.
            .
            and trust me, think Ship was alittle ashamed i graduate in Econ so i’m not being self serving here. i was by far the dumbest guy ever to get thru, mean, they told me so, truth.

          • NickS1

            Oh 100%. I’d let everyone know. Even my business card would say it…… He might have been allowed to walk while still having a class left. Just looked up the program, though, and they require 120hrs. Still not easy in any way. Some of those courses looked cool, too. There were at least two for sports economics that looked like something I want to take.

  • Scott J

    This draft seemed a lot different from last years. I think Kelly is starting to assert more power over the draft and player selection. I don’t mind him selecting players for his team, but I question the Huff and Hart picks. Both were reaches. And I don’t see how Hart fits the Eagles scheme. I also wonder why Casey Mathews is still on this team and we didn’t draft an inside linebacker. This favoritism may harm the locker room.

    • JosephR2225

      I agree. Felt to me like the last two seasons the Eagles took the consensus best player available. This draft felt more like they took the best Chip Kelly player available.

      I’m not going to make the jump to say it’s harmful yet, because plenty of draft picks have not worked out due to poor scheme fit, and I’m confident Kelly knows these guys and their strengths and how they fit, and familiarity usually is an asset, not a weakness… but it does make me nervous.

    • anon

      Azz loves heart and he was a late round pick, i’m fine with that. it’s hard to find people with experience playing our system, so gotta give him some lattitude, especially if you want people that can contribute day one on defense.

    • Andy124

      How does Hart not fit the scheme? He’s a prototypical 2-gap DE.

    • JAMIN67

      Hart is actually the PERFECT fit for for the scheme. And I have to give Kelly the benefit of the doubt on Huff. He coached him, and probably sees more of what he can become than we all do. Probably why he’s the head coach and we’re just typing on forums.

    • Jerry Pomroy

      A lot of people had both Huff and Hart as possible Eagles draftees because of fit & scheme familiarity. Although many saw Huff being a replacement to Avant in the slot. But it appears that’s where Matthews will be playing. I have a feeling that Huff will eventually be on the outside & Mac will most likely be left to take advantage of what he hopes to be a successful season in Kelly’s system & get paid in FA elsewhere. Just because Eagles wanted to resign him to a longer deal doesn’t mean they’ll be willing to pay his price after a healthy season in this system where he should put up numbers.

      Hart is a perfect fit as backup to Thornton & could very well take over the starting role at some point in the future.

      • NickS1

        Nice point about Hart. If Thornton plays like last year he’ll be wanting paid. Need to have the depth in case he wants more than we’re willing to pay.

        • Jerry Pomroy

          Glad you understood without me having to actually say it. Some would probably just have bashed the idea saying ‘oh how is he going to beat out Thornton?’ He may not have to, but in that same context 2-gap DEs aren’t sexy roles, so they really don’t command sexy money. On the flip side, Cox could want to go to a 4-3 team where he gets more opportunity to make plays as a pass rushing DT. So the Hart pick was a very smart one. Here’s to hoping Kruger can be a viable backup and potential insurance should Cox want to be in a 4-3. Another alternative of course is sliding Logan over to 5 tech & plugging Allen in at NT.

          • Andy124

            Lots of options being opened up by the guys we’re acquiring.

          • Jerry Pomroy

            Yes, honestly if I was Cox, I’d want to play in a 4-3 where I had success and was viewed as an up and comer that could make some noise as a DT.

          • Andy124

            I wouldn’t hold it against him. I’d be sad though.

          • Jerry Pomroy

            Me either. Sacks, pressures & TFLs get you paid over occupying 2 blockers, reading play & then making a run at QB.

          • oreofestar

            yeah I hope we can keep him though, if he plays well we may 5th year him and then hope he continues to do well and give him some high end 2 Gap money that is comparable to 4-3 DT money

          • bill

            Been banging this drum since last summer, when it was clear they were implementing a pure 2-gap scheme. Cox is “over-talented” for the position. Maybe they can find a way to use him that will justify them paying a 2-gap DE big bucks, but more likely, a 3-4 1 gap like SF or a 4-3 team will be willing to pay him a big number that just can’t be worked out in a 2-gap scheme where you MUST pay for quality LBs.

    • livingonapear

      The big difference is that at #4 the teams in front of you can’t take all your targets. Dion Jordan was our #1, He got taken, we shrugged and took Lane. This year we lost out on 6 big name players, and our 3rd round O-line depth plans got blown up.

      We really had to sweat to get our players this year, and even with all the moving we did, both up and down, we still never got those juiciest pieces. That’s ok, that Calvin Johnson or killer ILB will come when we’re one pick away, and can move up to get our favorite player. For right now, we need a deep team.

    • mtn_green

      Hart may be a reach, but he is definitely a scheme fit. There are few DE that did a 2 gap 3-4 in college. He was one of them. A lot of people on these message boards wanted him.

      • oreofestar

        Hart was not a reach at all

  • Eagles1018

    I like Kempski’s point. It does worry me and I have a feeling that Sanchez will be gone next year and he will look to reach for Mariotta early in next years draft. Keep in mind that the Eagles are already armed with a conditional 4th/3rd round pick depending on how Bryce Brown plays for Buffalo. That’s a trade up piece IMO. Hopefully if they go for Mariotta it will be the last Duck. And as someone mentioned below (and I was ranting about which Rob tried to calm me down) they needed a guy they could bring in to compete at ILB. Besides Goode there’s nobody there to come in and spell Ryans on passing downs. Unless they plan on letting Smith do it in his first year and look at ILB next season

    • TNA

      As more and more core players get comfortable with the system, it’s possible we may see less emphasis on players who already know Chip’s system. Remember that they’re trying to implement Phase 2 this year. Last year it was a miracle and a credit to the coaches that they transitioned so quickly. But it still took a year to get the basics down. Hence the need for highly valuing guys who are not familiar with the system who are 1) obsessed with football; and 2) smart. The Ranger who has a West Point degree in systems engineering is an example. It’s as if they’re hiring a logistics supply chain employee who can contribute in the film room/classroom if not on the field.

    • Tom W

      MArriota will go top 5 that 4th ain’t helping at all. Hart wasn’t a reach and is prototypical 3-4 end. Huff was over drafted, but I can live w one questionable pick who fit his scheme perfectly and already bought in and have a zero bust potential cause coach knows them

      • livingonapear

        Bridgewater was a consensus top 5 pick at this point in time last year. Brian Brohm was thought of as a #1 pick at this point. Mariota may fall depending on teams’ needs and whatever surprise stud teams start to drool over. Did most people know who Blake Bortles was at this time last year? The combine makes qbs like Bortles a big deal and pushes qbs like Bridgewater down the board.

    • Jerry Pomroy

      That conditional pick from BUF is contingent on Stevie Johnson’s performance with the 49ers. That’s the conditional pick BUF got from SF for Johnson.

      • cliff henny

        really? stevie for Bryce straight up, no wonder Howie called them about Spiller, they might have just said yes. is the pick a 4th in ’15 that becomes a 3rd in ’16 if stevie kills it? or regardless, 3rd or 4th, it’s in ’15?

        • Jerry Pomroy

          The details weren’t laid out fully on the credentials for selecting when/where. Just the possible rd/yr. Either way, yes it’s either a 3rd or 4th in ’15 or at the very least a 4th in ’16 I believe.

          • cliff henny

            ok. way i intially heard it is, 4th in ’15 and if he kills it, 3rd in’16. either way, thought a 6th was best. howie had a shotgun, duffel bag and a mask on during those trade talks

          • oreofestar

            yeah if Stevie sucks hard we get a 4th in 2016 hopefully we get a 3rd or 4th next year

          • Jerry Pomroy

            Yeah I think that’s how it was tiered. If he does good, 3rd in ’15. If he does ok, 4th in ’15. If he stinks it up, it stays a 4th but gets pushed back a year.

          • oreofestar

            Or it could be a roster thing like if he is on the roster by blah blah blah date

          • Jerry Pomroy

            Yeah I can’t find the full details. Why is it such an issue finding full disclosure on NFL trades? Sheil, can you get the full details and shoot out?

          • oreofestar

            whatever it is I just want the pick next year

          • Jerry Pomroy

            Yeah, talking about trades… Everyone wants to unload Graham for next to nothing. I say keep him an extra yr, find a way to use him & then let him walk & take the compensatory pick. From the looks of it, you’ll get better value from the league than another team. That’s what Ozzie does & look at what they got.

          • cliff henny

            wish i had any clue atall how comp picks work.

          • Jerry Pomroy

            Dunno. I just look at the players lost & compensation awarded. Better market in compensation it seems.

          • cliff henny

            Howie is looking at 20 yrs to life on that trade. 3rd/4th for a 3rd string RB? crazy good considering top RB was late 2nd

    • borntosuffer

      I don’t trust anyone’s opinion about what Chip will do with the QB. No one has come close to predicting correctly since he got here – not even close – except, maybe GEAGLE. But, most of his posts were too long for me to read.

  • Tom W

    Kempski writing the lazy national media type story …. Like chip needs a running qb or only wants his own players …. Funny we didn’t draft any last year. And how’d bringing in his own players work out for jimmy Johnson and the cowboyz in th 1990s? Oregon is a top 10 program and had great recruiting classes the last four years… These kids are good. Huff a bit of an overdraft but w knowledge we have on him his floor is very high and bust potential is minimal to none

    • Richard Colton

      Had we taken DAT in the 4th, I’d probably agree with him. He probably knows something about Huff nobody else knows. Wonder what the conversation was like in the Draft Room.

      Chip: 3rdroundpicktimeletstakeWATKINS
      Howie: Chip, Watkins will be there in the 4th, just be patient
      Chip: OK, in that case, lets draft Josh Huff
      Howie: Sam Huff?
      Chip: I don’t know my own guy’s name? he went to Oregon
      Howie: another Oregon player?
      Chip: remember last year when I wanted Kiko Alonzo in the 2nd?
      Howie: good point, Huff it is.

      • NickS1

        Had to get the Kiko dig in there. Love it.

        • Richard Colton

          i’ll never let it go. he’s my Earl Thomas; he’s my white whale. I was slurping him worse than C.Jones this year. Image him as an Eagle? This D has solid pieces. We lack dynamic, game changing playmakers. I love Ertz. Kiko is a difference maker.

          • NickS1

            You won’t find an argument from me here. I said on another post that I really want to know what else Jones did to not get drafted. Had to be more than the failed test at the combine.

          • JAMIN67

            Did he get signed anywhere…haven’t seen it if he did.

          • oreofestar

            I saw Jax

          • NickS1

            Bears

          • Rahkem

            Im not 100% sure Kiko is a better player than Ertz yet so we’ll see, Kikio had WAY more opportunity to play last year than ertz did for us he didnt have anyone decent in front of him Also iof he was an eagle im not 100% sure he wouldve won a job , at thiwspoint we would probably still be waiting to see him in action

          • Richard Colton

            To be the defensive ROY as a 2nd round pick and the heart/soul of the Buffalo defense? Tell you what, I’ll trade you Ertz for Kiko today, and throw in a 2nd rounder. Let’s call Donald Trump and make it happen.

          • oreofestar

            yeah I love Ertz and think he is gonna be a playmaker but I’d do Kiko for Ertz in heartbeat

          • Rahkem

            Its only 1 year though , no rookie Tight End has ever came in and lit it up with 1000 yards and a bunch of catches year 1 , look at all the greats in their first year Zach is right there, ill wait and see what happens this year before saying ill make that trade. And he wasnt defensive rookie of the year , wasnt that sheldon richardson.

          • Richard Colton

            There’s like 6 ROY trophies given out man. Pick your poison. Jets got insane value in Richardson too. I like Ertz as much as you do – but Kiko is a stud. Imagine him on this defense?

          • oreofestar

            if we picked him would not have to hear about how big a need LB was

          • Rahkem

            Yeah but did you see that chart Sheil posted a few months back ? every stud tight end breaks out in year 2 , im not saying ertz is the next tony gonzalaez , but history tells us we wont know until year 2-3. I like kiko too , but i have a feeling we might have something in ertz ,

          • Richard Colton

            it was a good chart – Sheil was sneaky though. He used players who broke out in their 2nd years, then looked at their year one numbers. Someone else (forget who) countered with the same data using all TEs drafted in the 1st & 2nd rounds. Not as encouraging.

            Anyway – you and I (and Mike Vick FWIW) think Ertz is going to be a stud. Its like the Batman vs. Superman argument. Or Hakeem Olajuwon vs. Michael Jordan. Jordan & Superman are better – but at least we didn’t get Aquaman or Sam Bowie.

          • oreofestar

            awesome analogy hah! think Ertz will be a star but Kiko is already close to one and in year 2 could be an elite Defensive player

          • Jerry Pomroy

            Aquaman was a punk sissy. Had to get fish to fight for him.

          • Maggie

            And that orange fish-scale look is so-o-o 70′s!

          • oreofestar

            should have Kiko Sheldon is overrated Reid, Ansah and Kiko are all better than him

          • Maggie

            Comparing a tight end to a linebacker is pointless. Especially on different teams. Apples to oranges, regardless of draft position or performance in the NHL.

  • G_WallyHunter

    Broke down their game tapes and brought a notebook for chip and Howie, now that’s great to hear, all these intangibles are starting to make me think we may have gotten one of the best WR prospects. I may be overdoing it a little but did anyone hear about a work ethic and determination like this in Watkins or Evans

    • oreofestar

      his ceiling is very high maybe not as high as Evans but if he really works and develops we may have an elite wr in 2-3 years on our hands

      • John E. Zang

        Don’t forget a lot of Evans big plays and yards came when things broke down. He’s a physical specimen yes but not the fastest and probably has a lot to learn about route running. I’m one who actually thinks he’s more of a risk than Mathews.

  • Will

    I really liked the Matthews pick and can’t wait to see him out on the field….

  • dislikedisqus

    Both your point about “taste and fit” and Kempski’s concern about shrinking the pool which I share, are saying the same thing and that is what this draft was about, getting Chip Kelly Chip Kelly guys. It’s not evidently about BPA in any objective sense. There is a logic to it and a track record to back it up so you have to have hope and trust, even if many if us are a little skeptical ( as I was at the initial hire of CK). This is a system team now. Only time will tell if it’s good enough, although my gut tells me we are 1 season away from being a true SB contender as opposed to a playoff team.

  • Formidable

    It’s amazing how non-football laymen and the talking head experts think they have all the answers about who we should have drafted and when. How different would these guys feel if these were our first 4 picks in the draft?

    1st – Matthews
    2nd – Smith
    3rd – Watkins
    4th – Huff

    All of a sudden a B- grade (another stupid concept of grades before anyone steps on the field) becomes a B+ grade and the complaints aren’t so loud and pervasive. You either trust the people to do their jobs or you don’t. If you don’t, take a hike!!! The Cowboys can always use another Philly based hater in their horde. I trust Chip to continue turning the ship around esp after the mooring job Andy Reid did with his draft picks almost every year. Last year our picks were primarily on offense, this year it was the defense that needed to be addressed. We aren’t drafting high in most rounds because we don’t have as many glaring holes as other top 15 teams in the draft. Even with a system set up for parity we are constantly improving so I am more than encouraged, I’m stoked!!!

    • Andrew

      So it wasn’t stupid when we all universally derided Andy Reid’s drafts, but because we had a rookie HC go 10-6, he’s all of a sudden earned all benefit of a doubt? Listen, I agree with you that it’s dumb to grade a draft before any of the players sees the field, but telling people to go root for the Cowboys if they don’t agree with a pick is just as dumb.

      • livingonapear

        It’s not a rookie coach going 10-6; It’s 7 starters, including a third round pro bowl qb, and 3 huge role players over 2 drafts for the GM. Add in 2 more backups to that and you have a successful two years where Howie has really been in control.

        If you (not necessarily you, the royal you) don’t like the picks, fine. But at least understand why they made the picks they made, when they made them. There were people flipping out because they thought Smith was a 4-3 DE that would be converted, when 5 mins of research would tell them this wasn’t so. But instead, they saw NFL.com had him going later (rounds 3-4), they hadn’t heard his name too often (unless they read igglesblitz.com) and simply reacted.

        You don’t have to be happy, but just try to have a little perspective.

      • Andy124

        Look at this from a sideways angle, Andy had the benefit of the doubt for quite a while, at least in my eyes. It was later in his tenure when the drafts started getting laughably bad that he lost that and the criticism of the drafts became louder and more justifiable.

        I think Kelly and company certainly deserve the benefit of the doubt for the time being. We also have to remember that the more success he has on the field, the later we draft, the less talent we’ll be able to grab in the draft, and that’s by design.

      • Rahkem

        i personally never complained about andy reid drafts until 2-3 years later , so speak for yourself

    • Richard Colton

      In your scenario, Matthews and Watkins would have been slight reaches. I’m assuming you’re still trading up for Smith in round 2.

      Your other point is homerish and Spadero-esque – if you don’t trust the FO completely, take a hike and become a Cowboys fan? I like this draft, but my gut, my eyes, and every single football expert who’s opined on the picks has said that Smith and Huff were reaches.

      • John E. Zang

        Bottom line is they either picked someon the “experts” would say you weren’t reaching for or get their man who would be gone by time they picked in the latter round. So if Marcus Smith becomes an All pro who frikkin cares where they picked him?

        • Richard Colton

          the way you put experts in air quotes suggests it’s a handful of people. I’m waiting for one person to admit that they had Smith in the first round. part of this process is understanding relative value – i.e. how do other teams view the player? what’s the lowest we can safely pick the player?

          and if Smith becomes an All-Pro? nobody will care where he was picked. Plenty of 2nd round picks do.

          • Jerry Pomroy

            Do I count??…lol. I thought he was a high second (which apparently he could’ve been 1st off board in 2nd to Skins), but might sneak into 1st (granted it was to us picking him after trading back a little further than we did). I never thought we had a chance at 54.

          • Richard Colton

            You know you count Jerry.

          • Will

            Most had him around 35-40 pick overall…Eagles had 26th or 54th pick…Smith was the next best OLB due to come off…I have no problem that they drafted a little early…Better to draft your guy early than miss out all together….we have no way of knowing if the Eagles had a trade back offer or not…

          • Richard Colton

            Yeah. I can live with that. It’s just something we didn’t see from them last year.

          • oreofestar

            well last year we were picking higher every round had more options also had so many needs

          • Will

            Yeah I think they went BPA for position of need this year…

          • ztom6

            look at it this way… they are at 26 (or at 22 even) and they’re looking at Smith, Matthews, and Lee. If they take a WR there, they’d have to trade all the way up into the end of the first round to get Smith. Instead they only had to trade up to 42 to get Matthews (and it wasn’t very expensive to do so). They also wound up picking up Watkins and Hart. So really they didn’t play it all that badly.

          • livingonapear

            But there were several players taken in rd 1 that has round 2 grades. It wasn’t just us. Smith’s stock was rising rapidly and while he may not be a “true” first rounder, he was at least a high 2nd rounder.

            Also, Daniel Jeremiah called the move up.

          • Richard Colton

            Here’s his final mock draft – doesn’t have Smith in round one. I like Jeremiah – he’s an Eagles guy and he knows his stuff. Like I’ve maintained since Thursday night, I like Smith. I think he’ll be a good Eagle. He was a slight reach. Huff was a reach. Its a departure from what we saw in 2013.

            http://www.nfl.com/draft/2014/mock-drafts/daniel-jeremiah/205653

          • Andy124

            Jeremiah is the guy I heard insist Marcus wasn’t lasting past 35, fwiw.

          • livingonapear

            But he tweeted stuff that was saying that Smith might go in the first round. I’m not saying that Smith was a slam dunk 1st rounder, but neither were several players taken in the 1st round.

            Deon Buchanon, Dominique Easly, Jimmie Ward all had 2nd or 2-3 round grades. That’s life at the bottom of the first round.

          • Richard Colton

            We’re trying really hard to find the one guy, aren’t we? Who are the guys that you know and respect? The guys that are consistently dead on with their mocks. People hate Kiper, fine. How about McShay? Ray Diddinger? Walterfootball? CBS? I mean, there are players (see Barr below or Desir or Lawrence) where there was no consensus.

            Honestly, I can live with him going 1/2 round too early. Same with Huff. It’s a departure. Something’s changed at the top for the Eagles. Let’s acknowledge it – this is Kelly’s show. Ever since the season ended, he’s had carte blanche.

          • ztom6

            Personally I hate on all those people. Why is Ray Diddinger even in this conversation? He wanted they to pick Kony Ealy. It’s like he only just started paying attention Thursday night.

          • Richard Colton

            guy’s in the hall of fame for a reason Ztom – how about a little respect? Ray has consistently been right on players since I started reading him in the early 90′s.

            example – Bills took a late flyer on a converted TE. Ray raved about him like a lunatic. The player? Jason Peters. Cost us a 1st round pick years later to pry him loose. If Ray says Kony can rush the passer, he can.

          • ztom6

            Sure he can rush the passer… in a 4-3. What system do the Eagles play? Does Ray Diddinger know?

            Not intended to disrespect what he’s accomplished in his career, but he never seems to know what he’s talking about anymore.

          • Jerry Pomroy

            He also tweeted that NFL execs loved Marcus Daaaarling!

          • Andy124

            Didn’t DeMarcus Lawrence go at 34? I can’t imagine Smith lasting longer than Lawrence in any scenario. (Going off memory here, so don’t kill me if I’m less than accurate there).

          • Rahkem

            Daniel Jeremiah had smith in the 1st round before the draft , he saw the buzz rising. Redskins wouldve taken him top of the 2nd , so what he went 6 or 7 picks early?

          • Richard Colton

            No he didn’t. and you don’t know that. It’s the Jon Harris argument all over.

            We both like Marcus Smith Rahkem, let’s not pretend he wasn’t over drafted.

          • knighn

            http://www.nfl.com/draft/2014/mock-drafts/daniel-jeremiah/205662
            Daniel Jeremiah had Marcus Smith picked at #27 by the Saints.

          • Richard Colton

            that’s a new one. I linked his May 6th Mock. Your’s is May 8th. Notice his comment?

            “This is probably a little early for Smith, but he’s an intriguing edge rusher.”

            It’s unanimous. Everyone thinks he was over drafted. Does it matter in the grand scheme of things? Not if he can play. It tells us a lot about the change in philosophy at the top. That’s going to give us a lot of clues for next year.

          • knighn

            Yes. A little early, but for a very good reason: “ïntriguing edge rusher”.
            As time gets closer to the draft, the draftniks get a better idea of where players will go. To be fair to Tommy Lawlor, he also had Marcus Smith as a likely trade back target the day of the draft.
            None of the draftniks get this all of the way right: see, “Jones, Christian”.
            And the draft is really about science, NOT consensus, right?
            http://articles.philly.com/2014-05-11/sports/49773588_1_nfl-draft-mock-drafts-consensus

          • cliff henny

            he also came w/ 3rd or 4th and 5th. that wipes any worry about degree of reach for me. got top end 3-4 olb, and more picks. man, what do people want? warren buffet doesnt time the stock market perfectly, either

          • Rahkem

            yes he did http://www.nfl.com/draft/2014/mock-drafts/daniel-jeremiah/205662

            & When i see the board and the way it fell im copltetely fne with the pcik , every decnet rusher was gon before the 54th pick i have no problem with the eagles taking the guy they liked the most out of the 2nd tier of pass rushers. I give little credence to what draft “experts” say , i dont follow mocks like that i do my OWN tape study and give my own grades. I had Smith with a 82 slightly below attaouchu

          • Richard Colton

            That’s the definition of reaching. The team doesn’t value a player at a certain their, but they don’t think that player or an approximate player at that position will be there when they pick next…so the reach down.

            Again, not a world ender, but they didn’t do it once in last year’s draft. They did it 2X in three rounds this year. And, if you believe what Comcast is reporting about what Howie said – they almost did it 3X.

          • Rahkem

            Dont believe huff was a reach in the 3rd at all i had him ranked in the late 3rd so in my opinion (which is all a “reach” is) they only reached on smith and it was an educated reach. Recuievers were sliding , they knew they could swoop back in and get a 1st round type reciever in the 2nd , sure they could had marqqise lee at 26 like most people wanted but they damn near had him at 42. To me they played the draft board beautifully , they got their e favorite pass rusher because they knew the reicevers they wanted to target would slide. I think the value of matthews in the 2nd offsets the slight reach of smith

          • Andy124

            It’s funny how internet debates can go, where one person is stating their position and being countered by a number of others. Responding to each of them can make it seem like you’re taking a stronger position than you really are.

            So with full recognition that you’re not blasting the pick, just feeling a little uncomfortable with the process that led to it, I’d like to agree on a definition of “over drafted” and/or “reach”.

            To me, those terms do not apply unless there was a better player at another position that you passed over. Since you know I wasn’t very high on Lee, I don’t see any other player I’d have taken over Smith at #26. Now I’m not as much of a draftnik as many of the guys here, so maybe I’m just missing some obvious guys. Are you working off a different definition or do you see some players you’d have rather taken at #26? If so, what player(s)?

          • oreofestar

            Thank you you can argue Lee maybe Fi-lo, Roby I guess but I would not have taken them over SMITH and the board at 26 was depleted no one fell, you can make a case that every pick after 26 in round 1 besides Teddy and maybe ROBY was a reach

          • Rahkem

            I see other guys i wouldve liked at 26 but that would mean coming out of this draft with little to no pass rush help. Or some super raw mid round guy who would never play next year. I think the eagles played the board well to address needs and still got alot of value trading back and with picks like matthews and reynolds.

          • Andy124

            It could be argued that the Eagles have to be willing to come out of the draft with little to no pass rush help in order to maximize to overall talent acquired in the draft. That that is the best long-term strategy for success. By your evaluation, we’d have to say that Smith was a bit of a reach, or slightly over drafted, but acceptably so. I think that’s exactly what Rich is saying.

            But I still haven’t been convinced there was a better player to pick at #26, so by my subjective evaluation, it would be called a great pick. Not a reach at all. I remain open to re-evaluation of the available, passed over players though.

          • Rahkem

            Reaches make sense sometimes, because of the dpeth at reciever . Look at the fact that lee only went 3 picks before us in the 2nd but people were banging on the table sayoing we shouldve took him and 5-6 edge guys went before him. Eagles anitcipated a run on pass rushers in the 2nd and acted. They traded back in the proccess and still landed a reciever in the 2nd that wouldve been a top 15 pick in the 2013 draft becaus eof how deep this class is.

          • Richard Colton

            Yeah. Ill agree with that. Depends on the player and the situation.

          • Richard Colton

            Ohh I don’t see it that way Andy. I don’t feel attacked at all. I really like Smith – you know we talked about him quite a bit here.

            It’s possible that they had Smith as a tier one player, that there was no one on their board ranked as high. They, of course, will say that. I suspect it’s not true for a number of reasons:

            A) No first round grades pre draft (ok – Jeremiah…great use of Google folks)
            B) Near consensus in media about him being a “reach”
            C) First five picks mirrored Eagles needs in order of need (OLB, WR, WR, CB/S, S) maybe that’s a coincidence.

          • 76mustang

            You didn’t answer Andy’s question – do you see some players you’d have rather taken at #26? If so, what player(s).

            You cite media consensus as evidence that Smith was a reach, but I’m still waiting to see your answer on what you would have done. Did you have 32 players with 1st round grades this draft (Howie says he didn’t)?

          • Richard Colton

            he said he had six that he hoped would fall to 22. they didn’t get lucky, it happens.

            At 26? I would have preferred to trade down again, knowing that Smith wasn’t relative value at 26. If there wasn’t a dance partner, I guess I’d have looked at Lee or Buchanan, maybe even Attaouchu, over Smith, ultimately – I’d have gone with Su’a Filo or KVN. Now the Eagles will say they had Smith rated as a round one talent. It’s possible – just think its unlikely.

          • 76mustang

            Fair enough, though I find it interesting that you list KVN and Su’a Filo as your selections over Smith – both of them would have been considered reaches as well.

            Plus, I believe Howie said that Smith was in the first tier of players they liked if the 6 they were targeting at 22 were off the board – however you slice it, the Eagles were in a plan B mode and waited until 40 secs. were remaining to select Smith (tried to trade down again, but risked losing out on Smith).

            Have to believe they left no stone unturned on evaluations of KVN, Attachou, Lawrence, and Smith – the fact they chose Smith speaks more to their grading criteria – I can see how based on limited knowledge we have that other OLBs could be seen as rated higher, but it appears the Eagles got the pick of the OLBs outside of their top 6 players for round 1. WR and OL offered greater opportunities than OLBs beyond round 1, so I have to agree with selecting that position and that player at that time.

          • Richard Colton

            SU’a Filo wouldn’t have been a 1st round reach. KVN? A lot of mocks had him as a 1st round early in the process. He had dropped to the 2nd in a number of them.

            Neither one of them is at a position of glaring need – so I can safely say that if the Eagles had pulled the trigger on either, it was because they had them rated as 1st round talent. With Smith. The fact that he’s considered a reach by so many AND he’s at their #1? Smoke = fire?

          • 76mustang

            Except Su’a Filo, KVN, and Lee all were selected in Round 2 – so did the GMs have it wrong or did the draft pundits have it wrong? Did Eagles, Cardinals, Panthers, Patriots, 49ers, Broncos, Vikings, Texans, Cowboys, Browns, Raiders, Falcons, Buccaneers, and Jaguars GMs all reach because they selected other players before VanNoy (your highest rated player)?

            Don’t even understand your Smoke = fire comment – what point are you trying to make?

          • Richard Colton

            sorry, thought you were following the thread. the fact that they took a player in round one who just about every pundit had rated as a 2nd round guy AND it happened to be their #1 position of need strikes me as more than a coincidence.
            Where there’s smoke, there’s fire. If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck…Chip Kelly probably drafted it.

          • 76mustang

            So it’s your contention that this was a need pick as opposed to BPA and that the Eagles are positioning the choice to the media in a deceptive manner? I’m not following the importance of the assertion – how does it matter what the Eagles call their selection? Is every GM and coach required to be forthcoming with their draft strategy and process? Howie, Chip, Gamble, believed that Smith was the best selection for the team at 26 – is your point that the Eagles FO isn’t always truthful with the media and fan-base when it comes to disseminating information pertinent to the franchise? Are you questioning Chip Kelly’s evaluation and drafting abilities?

          • Richard Colton

            the strategy this year is a departure from last year’s. that’s interesting to me as a guy who follows the draft. Tells me a lot about how the team’s organizational structure has changed in 6 months.
            Obviously, NFL teams spin what they do. Should we expect transparency? No. We can read between the lines though. Do I question his ability to evaluate players? based on the quality he’s found between UNH-Oregon-and 1 NFL draft? No way. How can you?

          • 76mustang

            Chip certainly earned the trust of the FO in his abilities to organize, lead, effectively communicate, adapt, adjust, strategize, delegate, and provide results. I would attribute a large part of the strategy shift to the difference between picking 4th and picking 22nd. Also, Chip had a better grasp of the talent/skill sets on his roster and coaching staff, as well as the salary cap implications as they relate to roster structure.

            I agree it’s fun to read between the lines and dissect decisions. The thing about Chip is that if we were provided access to all the pertinent information that went into his decision(s), I’m not so certain that we wouldn’t arrive at the same conclusion, or be able to refute the reasoning used in making that call. I’m not saying he’s infallible, but the guy seems to be right far more often than he is wrong.

          • Andy124

            woohoo, vocab lesson. Thanks for the new word.

          • Andy124

            And see, based on that, I think “slight reach” or “understandable yet unexpected overdraft” are perfection reasonable descriptors.

            I happen to disagree in my evaluations, but we all know my objectivity is somewhat skewed by my need for an edge rusher. A skew I would not allow if I were being paid to make these decisions, but have the luxury of embracing as a mere fan.

          • Richard Colton

            hahaha. Jerry gave up a lot to move up and get him, didn’t he? Demarcus is the guy a lot of people here are trying to make Smith into. Quintessential late draft riser. A number of mocks had him sneaking into round #1 – something I didn’t see from Smith.

          • cliff henny

            yup, equal to the #26 pick, interesting enough. fun reading btb.com, they all just gloss over 55 suspensions.

  • JAMIN67

    Prior to the draft, the two WR that I was highest on – realizing that there was a chance the Eagles weren’t going to be able to land Evans or OBJ, and I wasn’t big on Lee – were Cody Latimer and Jordan Matthews, in that order. The more I hear about Matthews, the more impressed with him I am. Let’s face it. Most college players that are drafted are done so because they have the skills to play at the professional level. But a big reason that a lot of them don’t make it, is a lack of dedication to their profession. They get the big payday…feel they are good enough…and then boom, reality hits. Some have the mental aspect to make it, some don’t.

    I think it’s safe to say based on what we’re hearing about Matthews, that this kid will put in tons of extra work, bust his ass and not take anything for granted. And that alone tells me there’s a really good chance he’s going to have a long successful career. Welcome to Philly, Jordan.

    • John E. Zang

      The dudes a football junkie, and wants nothing more then to win. Another plus side of that is that he will attach himself to Nick Foles because he knows the importance of it. He’s simply the best receiver we could’ve asked for in this draft.

  • JofreyRice

    Matthews sounds awesome.

  • JosephR2225

    I think instead of these draft guys issuing grades on how team’s drafted, the NFL should have general managers issue grades on how good or bad the mock drafts were. That would be much more interesting to me.

    • Jerry Pomroy

      Proceed to ‘mock’ the mocks…

    • livingonapear

      I wouldn’t want to see them tear the mockers to pieces, but I would like to see the counter logic at play.

      Explain why conventional wisdom was wrong etc etc.

  • knighn

    I don’t like the Best Player Available term. I much more prefer “Best Value Available”. In my mind, the Eagles formula goes something like this:

    Talent (the guy was productive in college / NFL [for free agents / own players])
    + Measureables (height / weight / speed / arms / hands / injury history / etc)
    + Fit (i.e. Brandon Graham should be a decent 4-3 DE, but doesn’t look right at DE or OLB for the Eagles)
    + Character
    + Need (“Sorry, Manziel – you truly are the best player available but we’re good at QB”)
    ——————
    Eagles Value Score

    Once the Eagles determine their Value Score, I imagine they weigh that against the Cost of the player…. either in dollars or draft picks or both.

    I’m sure the Eagles formula is much more complex, but if you break it down in these terms I have to wonder: given the systems the Eagles run on offense and defense, if the draft would have gone much differently even if Chip Kelly, hypothetically, was not from Oregon.

    We’ll see how Huff & Hart work out. After that, we can make a fair judgement on those guys. Now, if the Eagles continue to hold on to Casey Matthews, I think the Oregon bias will be clear (as Casey Matthews lacks NFL Talent and Measureables… and as such makes him a bad Fit for all NFL teams). We lived through this sort of thing with Andy Reid (Reno Mahe) and I’m sorry: while Casey Matthews may fill the Character, Need and Fit parts, there’s got to be other character guys out there who can: Play STs, backup ILB and OLB, and have more talent and better measureables then Casey Matthews!

  • Jerry Pomroy

    Funny thing is, I remember talking up Matthews a few months ago as my favorite WR of the bunch and certain people responding telling me he was slow…lol. Dude is a long strider and can deceptively hit his next gear to accelerate past DBs.

    • cliff henny

      kid can play. wonder if his drop percentage will decrease once he has competant qb throwing him ball, and not 11 set of eyes on him every play. watched bunch of his games, not for him but other SEC talents, and he was 95% of Vandy’s offense. terrible qbs, balls hanging him out to dry all the time and he went and got’em. the 40 time at combine is what sold me, and 3 1/2 yrs in econ from Vandy is stupid impressive…all i could do to get mine in 4 1/2 from Ship. and frankly, SR yr, profs took pitty on me, cause i needed Calc 4 base to complete course and they messed up early on and told me i didnt need to take any math classes.

      • Jerry Pomroy

        Picture this, Cooper wide left, Matthews slot left. Screen pass to Matthews with Coop throwing the block in front. Matthews takes it down the sideline for the TD. (Watch the screen pass clips Sheil posted in his No-22 on Matthews and you’ll be able to envision it MUCH better).

        • oreofestar

          That block he got was good stuff though

          • Jerry Pomroy

            Are you referring that Coop can’t block?? Also that’s just one clip, Sheil has two up. Plus, you’ll see a block on every screen pass thrown by design too.

            That was sarcasm by the way… That first statement.

    • livingonapear

      He’s also really really smart. He uses some great subtle moves to create separation and get behind DBs, and he seems to have a sixth sense about finding holes in traffic. I think he just understands angles.

      Those holes will be smaller now, but he’ll keep finding them.

      • Joe from Easton

        Knowing this guy grew up looking up to Jerry Rice and now hearing that he broke down the Eagles before his visit with them makes me see dollar signs (in the figurative sense of “Jackpot”). He obviously studied Jerry pretty closely because who wouldn’t if your cousin was the greatest receiver EVER and you play the same position. Jerry wasn’t the best athlete on the field in almost any category, but he knew the game better than anyone. I’m not saying this guy will be Jerry, but work ethic goes a long way when we’re talking about the difference between a bust, an average player, an above average player, or an elite player.

    • JofreyRice

      I will say that I don’t think he’s really a “true” 4.46 guy. I don’t think he plays like that, just as I don’t think Lee plays at whatever his 40 time was.

      Its all about separation, and system usage. If he’s used with tons of screen passes, like at Vandy, where he can body smaller nickel DBs, the lack of blazing speed isn’t going to be an issue; hard to catch someone laying on the turf. As much as I liked Avant as a locker room leader, having a YAC threat in the slot is exciting. This stuff about Matthews’ work ethic makes me optimistic about hos chances.

      • oreofestar

        Matthews really plays like 4.52 but what is really the difference he is a long strider anyway so he plays faster than he truly is

    • Joe from Easton

      Yea I think a lot of people are easily deceived by length of stride. Even I were to dumb it down to something as simply as my weekend warrior softball league. I play with a guy who I’ve played sports with for my entire life. I’ve always been faster than him or close to even, but he stands at 5’9″ and I’m 6’0″. He legs out an infield single and everyone tells him how blazingly fast he is, yet I do it with regularity and then it’s just taken with a grain of salt. It takes me probably 85% of the strides that it takes him to get from point a to point b, yet he looks faster.

  • mtn_green

    Why is The SEC all time leader in receiving around at 42? 7 better wr this year and many thinking good ones will fall.

    Face it Marcus Smith was over drafted but he wouldn’t have lasted much later. Cowboys took Demarcus Lawrnece in early second. I’m sure Smith was higher on their board. Of course Jerry will release a video of his board eventually. There were many other 34 teams in need of OLB.

    • ztom6

      It’s been said several places Skins had their eyes on Smith at 34. Eagles changed their plans and they wound up trading down and taking Murphy.

      • mtn_green

        Silly me I liked Murphy too. Smith is a far better athlete and that translates to NFL better.
        Smith 14.5 sacks
        Murphy 15 sacks
        People diminish both and put Barr and Mack much higher because they are FAR better athletes which translates to NFL better. Sacks are a result of scheme, luck, level of competition, hustle, etc.

        • ztom6

          Mack is just an all around great football player. Glad he’s not in our division.

    • dislikedisqus

      One reason the SEC all time leading receiver is there at 42 is that he wasn’t impressive enough to come out before his 4th season.

  • Will

    What’s up with grabbing the Vandy kicker when we really need to improve there over Henry…There are some great PK out there …Did the Eagles do there due diligence or does Chip just hate kicking FG’s that much…this is a concerning figuring all the close games in the NFL…I understand murderleg has a strong leg just question his accuracy on FG’s….

    • bill

      My guess (and it’s pure conjecture, obviously) is that they like the leg strength (relatively uncoachable trait) and see some easily correctable flaw in his form that affects his accuracy. Thus, they feel that they can coach up his accuracy a fair amount.
      Or, Chip doesn’t like kicking field goals anyway :)

      • Andy124

        I think they signed him purely for the nickname. And I approve.

    • PaoliBulldog

      Dude is like a linebacker in kickoff coverage. He’s the anti-Garo Yepremain. That’s gotta be a factor.

    • Richard Colton

      Here’s a little “murderleg” action for you Will

      • Will

        Nice bullet tackle hope he can Kick the ball into the endzone and make FG’s thanks for the clip….

  • PaoliBulldog

    My knee jerk reaction to the Smith choice was that the Eagles could have traded back and still gotten him. But on further review — pigs get fat and hogs get slaughtered. I doubt he would have lasted another ten picks, he was the highest rated player at a position of need and he’s got a ton of upside. A bit of a reach, but not enough to complain about.

    • oreofestar

      I mean sure if they could trade back another 3-5 spots that would be ideal but if you can’t are you gonna not pick him over 5 spots

      • PaoliBulldog

        Yep. Not worth the risk.

      • cliff henny

        howie, this weekend, maybe another 3rd. realistically, 5th or 6th

  • oreofestar

    Thing about the Smith pick is even if they did not want an OLB the board was destroyed at 26 so lets say we take Lee at 26 like most were suggesting now look at 54 attaochu, Lawrence and Murphy all gone so they either take another wr or reach hard for Clarke now you get Lee and Clarke

    • Will

      At first I really hated the pick…thought was a reach for the wrong player….but looking at it in hindsight Smith was the next OLB to come off the board…So the Eagles could reach a bit or miss out on Smith…He would be long gone by #54….

      • oreofestar

        I never hated the pick love Smith and he was going in the next 10 picks but I knew they get drilled by the media for it, look you can take Lee if you want but who else besides him….Roby? Buccanon? Fi-lo? I guess people like Lee but who else would we pick at 26

        • Will

          I wanted Bucanonn but if they go Safety then there is a big hole at ROLB and no great choices at #54 so the Eagles did the right thing and got the best ROLB available at 26th….

          • oreofestar

            People would have said Bucannon was a reach too maybe an even bigger need

          • Will

            Well the Eagles have a ton of new players for the Safety spot…not a lot of ROLB’s so I think ROLB was the biggest position of need on the Defense….Jenkins will pair with whoever wins the camp battle for the other spot, Wolff, Allen, Maragos, Watkins and Reynolds….one of these should make a descent duo back there…

      • cliff henny

        Dallas moving up to #34 gave 2nd and 3rd, equal value to eagles #26 pick. it’s a high value position, not that many of them, cant wait around for them to fall (Barr was huge over-draft). advantage of last yrs draft, holes everywhere on team, so they could just wait on falling talent. not case this yr. not much doubt in many minds they needed to max talent on wr/olb in 1st 2 picks, regardless of order. think theycame awfully close

        • Richard Colton

          Agree. I can’t actually decide if I think Barr was a total reach or if I’m still bitter we didn’t get him. The experts were so divided on him anyway, its hard to say. As curious as that pick was, I think the Vikings getting Teddy Bridgewater at 32 was a coup. How does the best QB in the draft fall to 32?

          • oreofestar

            HE was my 2nd QB but still eveyone has different opinions on them but Teddy pick was one of my favorites in the draft and Barr I think was a reach especially when you are a 4-3 team now if the Titans picked him where he fit and the value was decent then fine

          • cliff henny

            barr at 22 or smith and wadkins and hart? howie got crazy value in his trades. sheil needs to dedicate an article just to that. up and down, howie was kicking teeth in on trades

          • Richard Colton

            Barr. but it’s a total coin flip. not because of who the Eagles got, but because of Barr. He could be a flop or redefine the position.

          • oreofestar

            I will take the latter simply because of Hart I will continue to say it, I think he takes Ced’s job. I like Barr though but in that case after we trade for Matthews that leaves you with a 3,5,7

          • cliff henny

            exactly, and to get Barr, because OLB is n over-draft position, you need to toss in Mathews at least. QB, LT and OLB, when shopping for these guys, you know upfront you are paying retail if looking at top end talent.

          • oreofestar

            yeah that is true probably lose Matthews while keeping the 4th so you get Barr they probably still reach on Huff then you get Watkins and Reynold with no extra 5th plus Allen. Barr, Huff, Watkins,Reynolds, Allen would have been a mediocre draft

  • http://eaglemaniacal.com EAGLE MANIACAL

    Matthews was clearly the best pick in what for us was an up and down Draft. I think it’s easy for fans to lean hard to one side or the other and declare it either a good one or a bad one, without stepping back and getting an outside perspective on it first.

    Said bluntly: It’s hard to get a real accurate read on our Draft as a whole, without looking the division around us. Give it a look: http://eaglemaniacal.com/2014/05/12/nfc-east-draft-breakdown/

  • Ian Farley

    I will say the Eagles had a good draft but not great.

    And i could all but guarantee you that they didn’t use the best available strategy. Their board like had guys slotted that they felt they could get in certain rounds and they targeted a limited number of players that fit with what they want to do. It at no point was abou the best player on the board and making them fit in the team.

    they knew exactly who they wanted before Thursday, targeted each in a round they felt was good value, and drafted the players that fit. It is really obvious. Each of the draftees were players they targeted heavily in the pre-draft process. The had the mold of who they wanted, and they got exactly what they were looking for.

    the philosophy is this, find the guys who are physically and mentally right for the positions…. and coach them to our system. Last year was more about increasing the talent on the team without regard to the position. This year was SO calculated, that the pundits dont realize there was a bigger plan than just drafting who ever is highest rated on Mel’s big board or even the Eagles board.

    in the end I am pleased. They brought in talent. Maybe not elite, but high upside. It is eerily similar to how the Patriots operate, and I am ok with that… They will build a true team, not a roster full of names people know. That will be a winning formula.

  • oreofestar

    1. Marcus Smith – I love Marcus Smith and sure it was a 5-10 pick reach but what were they supposed to do. There was not a single player available I would take before him there also everyone says “TRADE BACK AGAIN” well who knows if anyone asked for the pick and maybe the teams that did were in the 40s which would be too late. Generally like the player and pick even if it was a slight reach.

    2.Jordan Matthews – My favorite pick I am a huge Mattehws fanboy even if I like Robinson slightly more. He was decent value while having a high ceiling and the size and speed Chip covets.

    3.Josh Huff – Yeah thinking Oregon bias I like Huff but I think he was picked round early.

    4.Jaylen Watkins – Not my favorite DB that was available but a nice player who could end up being a starter and pretty good value.

    5. Taylor Hart – I LOVE this pick I think he wll start eventually think he is taking Ced’s spot

    5. Reynolds meh I mean it is good value just not a fan reminds me of Nate Allen

    7. Beau Allen is a Logan backup

    • cliff henny

      yeah, trade back where, right? cowboys paid out the wazoo for Lawrence, who i’ll bet wasnt even on Eagles board. SF and Seat love amassing D talent, too. really dont get why people think it was a reach once Dallas moves up to #34.

      • oreofestar

        exactly! if Smith was there he would have gone over Lawrence I mean I get Huff because I think we reached by a round but Smith we reach by like 6 picks and no one was on the board

        • cliff henny

          i dont get Huff either, cbssports had him 3rd/4th since SR bowl. less than 5 picks later some slot guy came off, Pitts St i think. everyone has their own flavor of WRs they want once top stud guys are gone. Huff has almost no floor, probably needs to learn 5 pages out of 250 page playbook and can run with the 1′s day 1. Mathews can be slowly worked in, dont have to drop him in sink or swim style now. for a 3rd, yes please and thank you.

          • oreofestar

            Yeah I mean besides Reynolds I am pretty fine with all the picks

          • cliff henny

            that was the only one i was little disappointed in too (which frankly bodes well for the guy). think WOlff and being freak athlete is what soured me, was sort of expecting off the charts athletic less scheme sound, and Reynolds is exact opposite. heard kelly say something to effect that advantage of Reynolds is at Stanford, he played exactly how Eagles want them too.

          • Andy124

            Don’t forget his athletic numbers from his pro-day are leaps and bounds better than his combine numbers… 4.42 40, 39″ vert.

          • cliff henny

            yeah, 40 time i take with grain of salt, but vert is vert. if his reasonable projection is Nate Allen ’13, for a 5th, that’s great.

          • Hanibal Luis

            I don’t know much about Reynolds, but I don’t understand the Allen comparisons that keep coming up. Seems that Reynolds is a much better hitter and tackler. Was Allen ever touted as a hitter when he came out? I thought he was a playmaker.

          • cliff henny

            think the comparison are to ’13 Allen. Allen when he came out was early 2nd, and yes, those guys should be playmakers, where 5th looking more for solid contributors. think Reynolds also is being compared to Allen cause that’s who our 3rd safety (hopefully Wolff grabs the #2 by shorthairs) and that’s Reynold’s reasonable ceiling.

      • peteike

        who are these fans who call it a reach, this aint that other site, philly dot miserable

        • cliff henny

          read thru comments, lot of people here are. i’ll read kempski’s articles every once in awhile, but darn sure not going thru comments there

    • Rahkem

      Yeah Hart gives us way more on passing downs , i mean hes no justin smith but he can move for a 285 guy and he can convert speed to power, Dont think he’ll beat ced outright , it think he’ll slowly earn more snaps in the rotation and slowly chip at ceds playing time throughout the year.

      • oreofestar

        yeah I said eventually Ced is day one starter but by year 2 (assuming we resign Ced) or end of year 1 I predict HART is starting and hoping Fletch is too

        • Hanibal Luis

          I really want to see Cox impress this year. I think he was ready to make the jump and then the scheme changed. Sucks, cause I think he would be a beast in the 43, but he’s too talented not to bring in any scheme. I wonder what happens if he’S mediocre this year.

    • Joe from Easton

      I don’t know enough about Reynolds to either agree with or debate you on his reminiscence of Nate, but if nothing else the main difference is he was a 5th rounder, not a second rounder. If he has the exact same career as Nate then we got decent value.

    • knighn

      I don’t hate that Smith pick the way some others do. I don’t think that the Eagles were 100% in love with Marcus Smith at 26. I’m pretty sure they were still trying to trade back at 26. I can’t think of any other legitimate reason for them to take up nearly the whole clock at that spot if Smith was 100% what they wanted. And if you don’t believe me, please go back and watch (if you can find it) how long it took Eagles to pick. There was definitely less than a minute left.

  • eaglefansocal

    All the people below complaining about picking Oregon players need to read this article: http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/eagles/nfl_draft/20140512_Eagles_Notebook__Kelly__Roseman_relationship___Beautiful_thing_.html

    Unless Chip and Roseman are just lying, he backs off on judgement of Oregon players. Liked the draft, can’t wait for training camp!

    • oreofestar

      Besides Huff in 2 years and 15 picks he is the only guy I think was a true homer pick I mean whatever we will give you a homer pick once in a while and Hart was just good value love Hart as soon as we brought him in for a visit watched some tape on him and I loved him

      • Jamie

        There is a reason Huff got picked, and that is he was the best all-around player available. Chip’s affinity for versatility shows up in the Huff pick. From ST’s, with runback ability, to blocking punts, to YAC and clutch catches as a receiver, to downfield blocking in the run game. Huff has done it all, and done it pretty damn well over his college career.
        It’ll show up when he pancakes a FS to spring Shady for a big run, or he sets a pick to take out a LB for Ertz or Celek over the middle.
        Defensive coordinators, safeties and LBers expect tight ends to lay killer blocks. Huff always surprises them by being that WR or Slot guy that lays the wood.

    • cliff henny

      if Howie continues to pump out solid contributors in 3rd-5th, eagles are going to be really good for awhile. reading some of these posts, think people need to realize the crapshoot that is the draft. 3 guys, that’s it, if Howie pulls 3 solid players out of the 20 or so added, eagles are ahead of the game. get to 3rd, and they see a plug and play, no doubter 3rd-4th wr for 4 or 5 yrs, heck yeah, jump all over it.

    • tbwhite

      I’d have been concerned about a bunch of Oregon picks last year, but not this year. Chip has a year of NFL experience, he has a pretty good idea what works and what doesn’t in the NFL, and he knows Huff and Hart probably better than any one else in the league. So, if he wants them, then I have to think there’s a good chance they pan out as players. If he made those picks last year, without any NFL experience I could understand being concerned, but not now.

      • cliff henny

        yeah, i have more of an issue with Maehl and chung. that seemed like a guy tossing O guys a bone. Huff and Hart are legit NFL talents.

    • Justin

      I love when people complain that Chip has drafted a whole TWO people from Oregon. Hasn’t Chip drafted an equal number of guys from Stanford, too? Maybe Chip should just draft from small schools like Andy Reid.

  • travis papa

    If anyone has trouble with Smith at 26 just think of him as our 2nd pick at 42. Kiper mocked Matthews to us at 22 so he wasn’t a reach we got “value” there. You can also look at it as we got Smith+3rd pick which in my opinion mitigates any reach. Lawrence went 34 and no one was ranking him above Smith.

    • peteike

      Im reading these justification posts for Smith on every article. Not you, but if people cant accept the reasoning for that pick at this point with what everyone is saying, thats on them

      • travis papa

        Agreed. Honestly I should not care that much no matter what some fans just have a negative view of what the team does anyhow. If the eagles would have gave up a 7thrd pick to go up and get mack they would say we gave up too much.

  • Will

    I think before training camp starts and just watching film on the guys the Eagles selected in the draft they filled the holes on this team…ROLB, WR, FS, CB and picked up a lot of O-Linemen and a Kicker in the UDFA market…Got give Chip the benifit of doubt and wait and see how we do in September…Go Eagles!

  • oreofestar

    I just want to say Howie did a great job with the trades this weekend, moving down 4 spots and picking up a 3rd then taking that late third and turning it into the first pick in rounds 4 and 5 and then going up and getting your guy and only losing a laste 4

    • cliff henny

      and Bryce, 3rd/4th! considering top RB came off mid 2nd and has 2 less yrs of control.

  • Hanibal Luis

    Was listening to a podcast earlier, and they made a good point about what happened in the first round. More than any recent drafts, there was a butterfly effect all over the draft.

    1. Manziel dropping – For awhile there it seemed that there were more than a handful of teams that could take him after he fell out of the top ten. Instead, he kept falling and teams kept losing players they actually wanted. Put Manziel in the mid teens and imagine every player getting pushed back one pick.

    2. Bills going for Watkins instead of the Browns, put the Browns in a position to take Gilbert, and then everyone who wanted a CB settled for their second choice at DB or took a LB instead (Pitt, GB, maybe CHI) so then the next team took their second or third option.

    3. Minny not taking a QB (maybe they wanted Bortles), shocking everyone with Barr, also pushed the line down again.

    4. Titans wanted Barr bad, but what they do instead? Grab a third OT they don’t need, upsetting all the OL hungry teams, making them take another OL and disappointing some other team.

    If the Bills, Browns, Vikes and Titans had stayed the course, I think there would have been a lot of happy teams this year (maybe Dix probably drops to PHI). I really think many teams really wanted one, maybe two specific guys as opposed to 3-4 like in other years. When looking at it that way, this wasn’t a very good year for first round talent.

    Deep at WR, but thin at pass rushers (OLB & DE), TE, Safety and good inside backers. So whats left? Ok draft at OL, DT, CBs and maybe mid tier QBs. That’s why after #20, any team who wanted anything besides QB, was scrambling a bit. And even then PHX and KC could’ve taken a QB and helped out by grabbing Teddy in the mid 20s.

    Just a thought.

  • Rahkem

    This is why im in love with the Taylor Hart pick: http://youtu.be/LXIZzOq2wLA?t=2m57s

    i started the vid at a particular play , watch the lightning quick getoff ofr a 6’6 285 guy , and he splits the double team and FINISHES. Ced struggles to finish on passing downs i like what this guy can do in the rotation , may never start but he’ll have some sacks and tackles for loss hopfully they come in big games.

    • cliff henny

      hopefully he does his job on 1st and 2nd down, get’s zero recognition outside of coaches, and jogs off the field low 5′g Curry and Cole to come in on 3rd and 7+ to clean up series with qb pressure.

      • Rahkem

        this guy is solid at the point of attack does a decent job keeping blcokers away from his body and working down the line of scrimmage toward the ball carrier. Hes only decent in this aspect but he can get better. Youll see him in nickel packages with fletch as the 2 down lineman in sort of a 2-4-5 look. With Billy Davis’ scheme you want to have a couple big guys on the field most of the time in order for his blitzes to hit home. Hart allows you to have that beef on the field but still have some quickness and get off as an interior pass rusher. He wont dominate 1 on 1 but he can win on counter moves and will get a good amount of coverage sacks.

        • cliff henny

          want 1-5-5 look, with Cox being 1 and Barwin, Kendrick, Cole, Smith and Long(Howie’s got me curious about this guy) all waking the line.
          .
          agree though, adding these guys, wont be nearly as predictable and D-line rotation is going to be nice and youth and wont get worn down easily. i might even watch the defense this year instead of getting new beverage and refilling munchy bowl

          • Rahkem

            if you want to be running a 1-5-5 as your base nickel formatiion you better have Haloti Ngata or someone comprable and amazing linebackers who can shed blocks. I think we’ll incoporte that into our D but i wouldnt expect that to be the norm. Billy Davis did work with Dom Capers who is a lover of the 1-5-5 so i do expect that look to be apart of what we do.

          • cliff henny

            true, i just love watching LBs moving all over b4 snap, and 3 or 4 come flyng in not knowing which. seems kelly leans towards 3-3-5, little grey area,cause could do that with Cole and Graham as DLs. less snaps for Ryans and get off field better on 3rd down, dont care how, just needs to be done

  • wydok

    Love love LOVE this kid.

  • CJ

    I like that we’re drafted strong leaders and locker room guys, but does there come a time where that works against us over time when there’s a team full of “chiefs” but there’s no “indians” to follow them?

  • hillbillybirdsfan

    Really liking everything I hear about this guy.