PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — DeSean Jackson is an excellent wide receiver. Extremely skilled, tremendously talented, but a polarizing sports figure because of his me-first attitude. Whether it would be taking plays off, putting himself before his teammates, or posting personal stats on Instagram Jackson has given Eagles fans too many frustrating examples over his six season in Philadelphia.
Well Jackson is now a Redskin and rookie wide out Jordan Matthews, is an Eagle. Matthews, 22, is the polar opposite of Jackson in terms of his team-first mentality. While his talent on the football field remains to be seen, if his mature personality is any indication, Matthews will certainly be a special player.
“He [Chip Kelly] wants guys that are willing to sacrifice for each other,” Matthews told Anthony Gargano and Rob Ellis on 94WIP Afternoons. “We all want the ball, but if [Jeremy] Maclin is able to go out there and go get 100 [yards], then me and [Riley] Cooper are gonna go out there and make sure that we get him open. If Shady [LeSean McCoy] wants to go for 2,000 yards this year, then our receivers are going to block our butts off to make sure he gets those 2,000. As long as we win the game at the end of the day, that’s the main thing.”
Matthews was projected by many to be a first-round selection, but fell to round two. That would understandably frustrate most young players, but not this guy. Not Matthews.
“At the end of the day I couldn’t have been more happy with the draft,” Matthews humbly said on Thursday. “I’m in the exact place I wanted to be and then, there couldn’t have been a better guy to get picked before me to go to the Eagles. Me and Marcus [Smith] are great friends. I love him. I’m so happy he was able to get that opportunity because his financial situation by getting drafted in the first round, you know, that’s helped him and his family out exponentially and I wouldn’t want any more than that, to see my teammate happy and to see his family happy like that.”
“That’s beautiful,” Gargano said after Matthews’ answer.
“Wow,” replied a stunned Ellis.
“That’s a wonderful thing to say,” Gargano continued. “Not a lot of guys would say it like that.”
There isn’t a selfish bone in the two-star recruit’s 6’3″, 205-pound body, who trained in the offseason at the prestigious Tom Bender Performance Institute with players like Calvin Johnson, A.J. Green, and Demaryius Thomas.
“There’s a level of selfishness that can creep in when you’re in high school and when you’re in college because you want to make it to the NFL,” Matthews explained. “Everybody wants the team to win, but of course you want to, as an individual, rise up and get to that elite level. If you’re in the NFL, at the end of the day, it’s all about team. Nobody cares about the stats.”
Matthews is going to be a fan favorite in Philadelphia. That much is obvious.
“After I heard that interview, I had to call,” caller ‘Johnny’ said on 94WIP Afternoons. “It almost brought a tear to my eye. Everything that comes out of his mouth is genuine.”
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