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Eagles draft targets at No. 14: Western Michigan WR Corey Davis

Eagles draft targets at No. 14: Western Michigan WR Corey Davis

Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan

Height: 6-foot-3
Weight: 209 lbs.

2016: 96 REC, 1,500 YDS, 15.5 AVG, 19 TD
2015: 89 REC, 1,429 YDS, 16.1 AVG, 12 TD
2014: 78 REC, 1,408 YDS, 18.1 AVG, 15 TD
2013: 67 REC, 941 YDS, 14.0 AVG, 6 TD

With 5,278 yards receiving, Corey Davis is the most prolific wideout in NCAA Division I/FBS history. He's also second all-time with 52 touchdown catches and fourth with 331 receptions. Yet, Davis accomplished all of that while playing at Western Michigan, which is sure to create some skepticism.

The level of competition Davis faced in college isn't likely to bother the Eagles, who have enjoyed a great deal of success with small-school prospects over the past couple decades. Franchise quarterback Carson Wentz looks like a star in the making, just one year removed from North Dakota State. Brian Westbrook still holds the NCAA record for all-purpose yards, 15 years after the running back's name was called in the draft. Though he arrived in a trade and played only parts of two seasons for the Eagles, Terrell Owens may be the best example of all, coming from Chattanooga to become a Hall of Fame-caliber receiver in the NFL.

Just because some athletes have made the leap doesn't mean Davis can. Still, there's more than enough evidence that the size of the school and conference or level a prospect comes from isn't necessarily relevant.

Davis dominated the competition in the Mid-American Conference from the moment he arrived, somehow only earning Offensive Player of the Year honors last season. Then again, film against visibly overmatched opponents can be misleading -- just go back and watch Marcus Smith at Louisville, running around AAC offensive linemen like they weren't even there. Sure, Davis left defenders spinning with crisp routes and made the occasional contested catch, but dropping 150 yards and 3 touchdowns on Ball State every year doesn't prove much.

Here's what we know for sure. Davis possesses prototypical size and strength at the position. While there are no official times, he appears to have average speed for his size, at worst. The first-team All-American isn't afraid to go over the middle, and can either make a defender miss or break a tackle. Davis was the focal point of Western Michigan's offense, lining up all over the place, including outside the numbers and in the slot. He's a polished route-runner for college, and given the high volume of targets, doesn't drop many passes.

None of that should change in the NFL. Davis has the build, athleticism and versatility to play professionally, and -- by all accounts -- the work ethic to excel, too. There is little not to like.

Davis did have "minor" offseason surgery on his ankle, which is why we don't have any numbers from his pro day or NFL Scouting Combine. He wasn't able to participate. The Eagles had Davis into the NovaCare Complex for an official pre-draft visit, where they were no doubt able to check up on his recovery. Since he didn't miss any games as a result, it's probably no big deal.

Perhaps of greater concern is the fact that Davis didn't exactly leap off the tape when the Broncos were facing superior opponents. For example, in nine meetings with Big Ten opponents, the 22-year-old averaged 5.8 receptions and 77.9 yards per game with five total touchdowns. It's not like Davis wasn't a presence, and those teams no doubt were better equipped to focus on containing him. Still, the numbers suggest we're not talking about an unstoppable force here.

Of course, Owens wasn't dominant from a statistical sense at Chattanooga, not even against the competition at the program's level. It's a huge part of the reason for the stigma against the mid-majors and FCS schools -- there's a lot more projecting involved.

The fact that Davis has the potential to be the first wide receiver taken in the 2017 NFL Draft says something. Mike Williams won a national championship at Clemson, and John Ross came from Washington to run the fastest 40-yard dash in the history of the NFL Scouting Combine. And here's Davis out of little, overlooked Western Michigan, quietly setting an NCAA record and rising up boards.

If guys like Owens, Westbrook and Wentz have taught us anything, maybe we should actually look at Davis more favorably rather than less for being in the conversation. Chances are, he'll continue to over-achieve as a pro as well.

 

Other Eagles draft targets at No. 14:
Tennessee DE Derek Barnett
Michigan DE Taco Charlton
Ohio State CB Gareon Conley
Florida State RB Dalvin Cook
Western Michigan WR Corey Davis
Alabama LB Reuben Foster
LSU RB Leonard Fournette
Alabama TE O.J. Howard
Alabama CB Marlon Humphrey
Washington CB Kevin King
Stanford RB Christian McCaffrey
Michigan State DT Malik McDowell
UCLA DE Takkarist McKinley
Wisconsin OT Ryan Ramczyk
Washington WR John Ross
LSU CB Tre'Davious White
Clemson WR Mike Williams

Tim Jernigan rocks Tim Jernigan jersey in Tim Jernigan rap video

Tim Jernigan rocks Tim Jernigan jersey in Tim Jernigan rap video

Back in April, Eagles defensive tackle Tim Jernigan began a rap career with Good Boyz Music and now he’s back with another track and video. 

In this one, entitled “Come Thru” Jernigan is wearing his No. 93 Eagles jersey for his verse, which he drops under the name Stud Muffin (h/t PhillyVoice). At one point, Jernigan is holding a black umbrella in one hand and a wad of cash in the other. 

OK then. 

Check it out, but be warned: There’s some NSFW lyrics in there. Jernigan’s verse starts around the 38-second mark. 

As PhillyVoice pointed out, Jernigan does drop a David Akers lyric in the song — “like my name David Akers or I play rugby.” That seems to be a reference to the previous line when Jernigan mentioned kicking and punting. 

While Jernigan rocked his own jersey in the latest video, back in April, in “Hustle Harder” Jernigan was wearing an old-school Grant Hill Pistons jersey. Here’s that track: 

Believe it or not, his budding rap career wasn’t one of the topics of conversation when a few reporters caught up with Jernigan back in May.

Jernigan signed a one-year, $1.25 million deal to return to Philadelphia this past offseason. That came after what has been a wild couple years for Jernigan in Philadelphia. He was traded here, became a big part of the defense, signed a huge contract, suffered a mysterious injury and then the Eagles declined his option this offseason before he returned at an extremely discounted rate. 

The Eagles this offseason also brought in Malik Jackson, who will likely take over as the starting defensive tackle next to Fletcher Cox. That, of course, was Jernigan’s old position. 

“I don’t care,” Jernigan said in May. “I believe in me. I believe in Timmy. Straight up. I believe in Timmy. I hope nobody take that the wrong way.”

He even believes enough in Timmy to wear his jersey in his rap video. 

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Bryce Harper meets some Philly sports legends at the Sixers game

Bryce Harper meets some Philly sports legends at the Sixers game

The new big man in town, Bryce Harper, went to the Wells Fargo Center on Thursday night to take in the Sixers game against the Milwaukee Bucks. He rubbed shoulders with some of the previous biggest (little) men in town.

Harper was in attendance and rang the bell prior to tip-off — something he'll surely do many times during Phillies games across the street this summer.

When Harper made his way to his seat in a suite, he was seated alongside Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz. Rhys Hoskins was also in the suite as were all of the aforementioned players' significant others. Talk about some serious Philly sports firepower right there.

And then later in the game, the Sixers shared an image of a couple of legendary No. 3s meeting in the bowels of the Center. I'd love to hear the conversation between Allen Iverson and Harper.

Eagles wide receiver Alshon Jeffery was also in the building, sitting a bit closer to the court. Rapper Meek Mill was also in the building and took a photo with A.I. Which got me wondering: What's the perfect storm of Philly sports stardom in a Rat Pack sort of way? Obviously you had Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid on the court last night. In terms of the Flyers, aside from Gritty, you'd have to go Claude Giroux or maybe a fun-loving guy like Scott Hartnell from years past? Recently retired players that could fit the bill from other teams would have to include Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins and maybe Pat Burrell just for fun. Is anyone in recent Eagles memory a bigger name than Brian Dawkins? He'd fill the fedora quotient. Nick Foles could be fun in a clean and wholesome sort of way.

My Philly sports Rat Pack would consist of A.I., Simmons, Embiid, Kendall Jenner, Wentz, Jason Kelce and Gritty. We got a good portion of that in the building last night.

Who is in your Philly sports Rat Pack?

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