Eagles Nab WRS Jordan Matthews, Josh Huff
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Philadelphia Eagles got their wide receiver. And then another.
The Eagles traded up to select Vanderbilt's Jordan Matthews with the 42nd overall pick in the NFL draft on Friday night. Then they took Oregon receiver Josh Huff at No. 86 in the third round.
The 6-foot-3, 212-pound Matthews and the 5-foot-11, 206-pound Huff help fill the void left by the release of three-time Pro Bowl wideout DeSean Jackson and veteran Jason Avant.
"You look at his numbers and they're off the charts," coach Chip Kelly said of Matthews. "He's an intelligent kid. He's a big, physical guy. He has outstanding speed."
Matthews is the SEC's all-time leader in career receptions (262) and yards receiving (3,759). He had 94 catches for 1,323 yards and eight touchdowns as a junior and followed it up with 112 receptions for 1,477 yards and seven TDs last season.
"I had a great interview and a great time up there meeting with the coaching staff and everybody. I got a really good vibe and it's great to be on board," Matthews said.
Kelly raved about Matthews' size.
"The one thing he does is catch the ball in traffic," Kelly said. "He made an unbelievable amount of contested catches. He's got such a wing span and will go up and get it, and can play both inside and outside."
Jackson, who was released in late March after the best season of his career, is only 5-foot-10 and 175 pounds. He had trouble against bigger cornerbacks, but used his speed and elusiveness to be one of the top playmakers in the NFL.
"We see a ton of man coverage," Kelly said. "I think people match up to us because of what we do and the speed and tempo that we play. If we're going to see it a lot, how do you get guys that exploit that coverage? In a league where sometimes people put smaller guys in the slot, we wanted to put a bigger guy in there."
Matthews is expected to start inside with Jeremy Maclin and Riley Cooper on the outside. Avant was Philadelphia's slot receiver the last few years.
"I'm hungry. Every opportunity I've ever had in football I had to go out and grind for it," Matthews said. "Nothing was ever given to me, so when the ball is in the air, it's mine so that's my attitude whenever I go out on the field."
Huff played for Kelly at Oregon. He had 62 catches for 1,140 yards and 12 touchdowns as a senior. Huff is considered a good blocker with an explosive burst. He also can bolster Philadelphia's special teams as a returner.
"It's a dream come true being reunited with him," Huff said of Kelly. "He said he was going to draft me and kept his word."
The Eagles gave the Titans their second-round pick (No. 54) and a fourth-rounder (No. 122) for the 42nd pick. They traded the 83rd overall pick to Houston for a fourth-rounder (No. 101) and a fifth-rounder (141).
The defending NFC East champions began the draft by trading down on Thursday night, added an extra third-round pick and took Louisville linebacker Marcus Smith at No. 26.
Eagles fans at Radio City Music Hall in New York booed the selection of Smith, who was projected to go in the second or third round.
"Let him step on the field and play a snap first," Kelly said.
Matthews and Huff are two more options for an offense that set several franchise records last year and features Pro Bowl quarterback Nick Foles and All-Pro running back LeSean McCoy.
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