The Eagles got a big-time receiver on Thursday night.
They just didn’t draft him.
Instead, the Eagles traded the No. 18 draft pick and No. 101 (third round) to the Tennessee Titans for veteran receiver A.J. Brown.
Brown, 24, was a second-round pick back in 2019 and has become a star in the NFL. In his first three NFL seasons, Brown has 185 catches for 2,995 yards and 24 touchdowns. He was a Pro Bowler in 2020.
The 6-1, 226-pound Brown is entering the final season of his four-year rookie contract but the Eagles are giving him a major contract extension.
Brown’s new deal with the Eagles is a four-year contract extension worth $100 million, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. It includes $57 million in guaranteed money. That $25 million APY during the extension makes him the fourth-highest paid wide receiver in the NFL.
Just recently, Brown had been spotted working out with Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts. Now, he’ll get to work with him at the NovaCare Complex.
The Eagles this offseason were interested in adding a free agent receiver but prices got out of hand. They were initially going ofter Christian Kirk before Kirk — a good, not great player — got $18 million per season. They were also interested in trading for Calvin Ridley before the Falcons receiver was suspended for the entire season for betting on NFL games. The only receiver they added this offseason was Zach Pascal, a move that barely moved the needle.
But this certainly classifies as a splash.
Brown had a tremendous season in 2019 with 52 catches for 1,051 yards and 8 touchdowns. In 2020, he was a Pro Bowler with 70 catches for 1,075 yards and 11 touchdowns. He played in just 13 games in 2021 but still managed to have 63 catches for 869 yards and 5 touchdowns. The Eagles haven’t had a 1,000-yard wide receiver since Jeremy Maclin in 2014. The last player the Eagles had go over 1,000 receiving yards in a season was Zach Ertz in 2018.
With 185 receptions for 2,995 and 24 touchdowns, Brown is just one of 15 players to put up those numbers in the first three years of his career in NFL history. The others are D.K. Metcalf, Ridley, Tyreek Hill, Odell Beckham Jr., Mike Evans, A.J. Green, Hakeem Nicks, Marques Colston, Larry Fitzgerald, Randy Moss, Joey Galloway, Andre Rison, Jerry Rice and John Jefferson.
Brown played college football at Mississippi with Metcalf. Eagles fans have been clamoring for the Eagles to rectify that draft mistake. They do it instead with his former teammate.
The Eagles’ offense will now feature Brown, DeVonta Smith and Dallas Goedert as the main targets for Hurts as he enters his third NFL season.
While the Eagles used the No. 18 pick to get Brown, they used No. 15 to trade up to 13 and draft Jordan Davis out of Georgia.
Subscribe to the Eagle Eye podcast