Eagles Offensive Tackle Lane Johnson recently joined the NFL Network's "Good Morning Football." On the show he couldn't stop talking about the Eagles rookie receiver DeVonta Smith.
“His change of direction, his ball skills. He doesn’t say a whole lot, but he does show a whole lot of what he’s capable of. When you have a guy that high caliber, he does nothing bring guys along in the receiving corps.”Lane Johnson on DeVonta Smith
DeVonta has already impressed the team enough to garner a nickname: "Slim Reaper." He will likely be the Eagles' number 1 receiver this season. That will allow him to continue where he left off after winning the Heisman Trophy in college.
DeVonta played at Alabama this past season and had one of the most impressive seasons for a wide receiver in recent memory. Alabama blew out Ohio State to take the National Championship this past college football season. In the championship game, DeVonta had 12 receptions for 215 yards and 3 touchdowns. It was a master class; no Ohio State defender could stay with him.
NFL defenses will provide a much greater challenge for DeVonta, but if he proved anything in college, he's up to the task. The Eagles receiving corps were pitiful last year, to put it bluntly. The Eagles went 4-11 last year and finished last in the NFC East. They will be hoping to improve that this year, and it starts with their receivers. The addition of DeVonta Smith is a huge upgrade over anybody on the roster last year.
The Eagles will be hoping that he becomes not only a good receiver but a great one. He showed elite skill in college that suggests he could become one of the best receivers in the league. Based on Lane Johnson's impressions from training camp, it appears he's well on his way.