The Eagles have just announced that they have released Wide Receiver, Riley Cooper. To say that this is long overdue is an unbelievable understatement. During his six seasons in Philadelphia he had one “break out season” in 2013, in which he recorded 835 yards receiving and caught 8 touchdowns. Other than 2013, Cooper has time and time again fallen short of expectations. The over-glorified blocker, whom Chip Kelly attempted to sell to a knowledgeable Philadelphia fan base as a passable WR1, will now likely be joining a team as a WR3-4 playing partial snaps out of the slot, where he belongs.
Coopers style of play highly conflicts with how Jordan Matthews plays, they are essentially the same weapon, not too fast, not too big, both operate best out of the slot. This could be a major factor in the cutting of Riley Cooper, as well as the fact that Riley Cooper makes $4 million a year, but only caught 21 balls last year. The dropping of Riley Cooper has certainly given me hope in the future of Doug Pederson, fixing up this lackluster Wide Receiving core is essential if the Eagles have any plans to be relevant in the near future. Riley Cooper and Miles Austin being off this roster will likely bring some level of optimism to Eagles fans. Riley Cooper does have a place in the NFL, likely as a third or fourth receiver utilized for his blocking ability. This 2015-2016 season will likely be remembered as his worst season in the NFL, although I think it is a great move to release him, wherever he ends up, he will have a bounce back season (there is no where to go but up).
Hopefully the releasing of Riley Cooper means that we will be getting some new players to put in at the Wide Receiver position. Every receiver in 2016 free agency seems to be in the Eagles price range, with the exception of Anquan Boldin and Alshon Jeffery. I don’t expect the Eagles to go out and land a “super star” but signing someone like Percy Harvin, Jermaine Kearse, Travis Benjamin, or Lance Moore could make the Offense significantly better. Doug Pederson has won me over with this roster move, after hearing the rumors about “getting Nick Foles back.” (which was horrifying) This was a smart and practical decision, we just have to see how the Eagles handle this mess at the Quarterback position, and it will take a while to undo the mess that Chip Kelly made during his time here. Only 213 more days until NFL football.