SEATTLE SEAHAWKS

Seahawks’ DK Metcalf can show Eagles their error in passing on him

Nov 23, 2019, 2:30 AM | Updated: Oct 29, 2020, 11:01 pm
Seahawks WR DK Metcalf...
Seahawks WR DK Metcalf will face another team that drafted a WR before him this Sunday. (Getty)
(Getty)

When the Seahawks played the Browns back in Week 6 of this season, head coach Pete Carroll was questioned about whether the Seahawks had considered taking now-Cleveland running back Nick Chubb in the 2018 NFL Draft.

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He admitted there was a lot to like about Chubb, but the team ultimately saw running back Rashaad Penny as a better fit. The Seahawks ended up drafting Penny with the 27th pick and the Browns selected Nick Chubb 35th overall. It’s understandable to have a little bit of envy when Chubb has racked up over 2,000 rushing yards since that draft and Rashaad Penny has totaled 586, but it’s not exactly a fair comparison.

Chubb has been the clear lead back for the Browns, while Penny has had to sit behind a top 10 rusher in Chris Carson. It may seem frustrating that we haven’t seen more from a first-round draft pick, but the bottom line is that the Seahawks don’t need more from Penny right now.

That is not the case for the Eagles and their rookie wide receiver J.J. Arcega-Whiteside. With DeSean Jackson on injured reserve after playing only three games, Alshon Jeffrey banged up most of the season and Nelson Agholor drawing the ire of fans for dropping passes in big moments, the Eagles need wide receiver help in a bad way. They are looking to Arcega-Whiteside, the rookie they drafted out of Stanford with the 57th pick of this year’s draft, to step up and be that guy.

But some Eagles fans can’t help but notice that they could have been looking to another rookie wide receiver for help instead. Yes, that’s right – the Eagles fans and media have their own case of draft envy, and it’s for Seahawks wide receiver DK Metcalf. Seattle took Metcalf 64th overall, seven picks after the Eagles selected Arcega-Whiteside.

In his Wednesday press conference, Eagles coach Doug Pederson was asked what persuaded them to take Whiteside over Metcalf.

“We liked the player,” he said. “He’s a big, powerful, physical guy, and he had some really good tape out there and then we also liked J.J. We loved his size, his ability to play above the rim so to speak in the red zone and things like that. So, you know… similar players and we made the decision with J.J. and we’ve been happy with it.”

So far, Metcalf has 35 receptions for 595 yards and five touchdowns this season while Arcega-Whiteside only has three receptions for 43 yards and no touchdowns. Whiteside has only played 198 snaps to Metcalf’s 585, but on a team that needs receivers so badly, it seems to say a lot that he isn’t seeing more opportunities.

“Sometimes it takes time,” Pederson said following the Eagles’ loss to the Patriots last Sunday. “It takes time to kind of settle into their role, understand their role, and then to understand our game, to be able to play fast and play at a high level. He showed some of that Sunday.”

Then again, sometimes it doesn’t take time. Despite many critics saying Metcalf couldn’t run routes and was too slow in combine agility drills, he is looking very comfortable in an NFL offense, and Carroll has the utmost confidence in his rookie receiver.

“We love what he’s doing and how he’s contributing,” Carroll said before the Seahawks faced the 49ers in Week 10. “Wish he could get the ball more because he’s so capable. The crossing routes that he caught, the deep balls we’ve seen him catch, getting down the field and making plays under duress and all that, there are no restrictions on his game at all. We’ve just got to keep going.”

The Seahawks will “keep going” this week in Philadelphia with Metcalf facing a team that drafted a wide receiver before he was selected for the fourth time this season. There were eight teams total that drafted a wideout before Seattle selected Metcalf, and he told 710 ESPN Seattle’s Bob, Dave and Moore in October that he remembers exactly who they are.

“I mean, I kept track of who was drafted before me,” Metcalf sad. “You know a lot of teams picked other positions, other players before me, so it’s really just motivation for me. Back on that date, I was there, and didn’t get selected so you know… just keep going and just continue to be great and make them pay.”

Metcalf gets the opportunity to show the Eagles what he can do firsthand on Sunday, and the Seahawks get to be the object of draft envy for landing what appears to be one of the bigger steals of the 2019 draft.

Follow 710 ESPN Seattle’s Maura Dooley on Twitter.

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