49ers Sign Ex-Eagles ‘Leading’ WR, Twitter Recalls Missing ‘Elite’ Packers WR

Getty Jordan Matthews was traded from the Philadelphia Eagles to the Buffalo Bills on August 11.

Hindsight is always 20/20, right? But Eagles fans have been taking it to telescopic levels when reviewing the ghosts of NFL drafts past. DK Metcalf and Justin Jefferson are the two biggest names being mentioned as guys the Eagles missed out on. Here’s a new one for you: Davante Adams.

The Packers receiver has morphed into one of the league’s premier pass-catchers, racking up 908 yards on 74 receptions and 11 touchdowns in 2020. Adams clearly has the trust of his future Hall-of-Fame quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, as evidenced by a whopping 99 targets in just nine games this year. The three-time Pro Bowler is undoubtedly on his way to another all-star game, maybe even his first All-Pro nod.

What’s this have to do with the Eagles? Well, he was on the board when Philly selected in the second round way back in 2014. Adams went 53rd overall to the Packers while the Eagles took Jordan Matthews at 42.

It was a different time back then, with the organization mired in the muck of Chip Kelly. And, to his credit, Matthews came out swinging in his first three seasons: 872 yards, 997 yards, 804 yards from 2014-16. Impressive numbers.

More importantly, he was a trusted security blanket in the slot for Carson Wentz and one of his best friends on the team. But none of that seems to matter to the revisionist history writer. Adams is an elite receiver. Matthews is on the 49ers’ practice squad. The Eagles made a mistake.

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Matthews Signs with 49ers Practice Squad

Matthews was in Wentz’s wedding and truly holds a special regard for both the quarterback and the Eagles organization.

He has served three stints in Philadelphia, most recently in 2019 when he appeared in two games and made four catches for 33 yards. He has spent ample time in San Francisco as well, including joining their practice squad earlier this week.

The Vanderbilt product — and relative of NFL legend Jerry Rice — was signed to the 49ers practice squad on Nov. 27 as emergency insurance for oft-injured receiver Deebo Samuel. Matthews has 274 career catches for 3,288 yards and 22 touchdowns. Not too shabby.

Eagles Traded ‘Leading’ WR to Buffalo

People quickly forget that Matthew was no slouch in Philly. He led the Eagles in receiving yards 18 times during his first three seasons in midnight green, then promptly resumed his “leading receiver” role with a throwback game in 2018 where he caught four passes for 93 yards. His chemistry with Wentz never waned.

“It was big for him to step up the way he did today,” Wentz said in 2018, via The Inquirer. “It was cool to have him be the leading receiver again. It’s been a while.”

He was supposed to be a long-term building block for Wentz and the quarterback expressed frustration after the team traded him to Buffalo in 2017. Wentz even drove Matthews to the airport, with a heavy heart.

“You know, it’s tough,” Wentz said, via NBC Sports Philadelphia. “It’s one of those things where there’s the personal side of things and the football side of things. The football side of things, you’ve just got to trust what they’re doing upstairs.”

The Eagles netted cornerback Ronald Darby in the deal, so it can be argued everything (kind of) worked out. Darby, who is thriving in Washington right now, was a big part of the 2017 Super Bowl run.

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