Eagles Scouting Profile: Russell Shepard, WR, LSU

Chris Graythen

Chip Kelly loves to score, that much is well-documented. To have firepower on offense, you need weapons. The Eagles added plenty of talent in the draft, including tight end Zach Ertz, who will be a featured force on offense. However, outside of Ertz, the Eagles really shied away from adding playmakers. Shortly after the draft, the team added a pair of running backs and a wide receiver, LSU's Russell Shepard, as undrafted free agents.

Shepard, the lone rookie wide receiver in the 2013 NFL Draft haul, is an interesting player. Coming out of high school, he was considered a top quarterback prospect. He was a USA Today High School All-American in 2008 and came to LSU in 2009. He was not terribly productive in college, boasting only 570 yards and five touchdowns on 58 receptions over four years. However, he was a productive runner, adding 716 yard and five touchdowns on the ground with just 104 carries (6.9 yards per carry). A jack of all trades, there has been draft buzz that he could become a defensive back in the NFL. At 6'0" and 196-pounds, he would fit what Kelly is looking for in a bigger cornerback.

Here is what NFL.com had to say about Shepard's Pro Day (he was not invited to the Combine):

At LSU's pro day, Sheppard ran the 40-yard dash twice in 4.46 seconds. He had a 38 1/2-inch vertical, a 10-foot-2 broad jump, a 4.37-second short shuttle, a 7.09-second three-cone drill and did eight reps of 225 pounds on the bench. At the pro day, he did both wide receiver and defensive back workouts, and scouts think Sheppard's best position in the NFL could be at defensive back.

Mike's Take: You wanted a gadget guy? You got it in Shepard. The end around king of LSU is a guy without a position, but is a worthy project for Chip Kelly. As a man without a home, Shepard lined up out wide, behind center, and in pretty much every role you could ask him to take. There are rumors that some teams wanted to use him as a cornerback, but after watching tape, I believe he is more likely to be a kick returner and a gadget guy on offense. As a running back, Shepard is quick but tall and thin for the position. As a wide receiver, he has pretty horrible hands but will do damage on screens. His speed is not elite, but his field vision and quickness is valuable. If he makes the team, it will likely be as returner.

Here is a cut-up of Shepard against Auburn, Florida and Alabama:
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