The Eagles will look to replace DeSean Jackson in May's draft, but the new player may not fit his predecessor's mold. Chip Kelly appreciates size and he could look to spend a pick on a big receiver that could be better in the redzone and as a blocker than Jackson. If the Eagles pass on taking a wide receiver in the first two rounds, Indiana's Cody Latimer could be an intriguing option for a team that appreciates size, speed and blocking.
A high school football and basketball star from Dayton, OH., Latimer committed to Indiana in 2011. His freshmen season saw him play in eight games (two starts) and he collected 12 catches for 141 receiving yards and two touchdown before missing the final three games with a hernia surgery.
He returned in 2012 and caught 51 passes for 805 yards and six touchdowns in 12 games (10 starts). He was selected to the All-Big Ten second team by the media for his efforts. His senior season was a dominant one, as he produced 72 receptions for 1,096 yards and nine touchdowns after starting all 12 games. He was once again selected to the All-Big Ten second team. He has the distinction of having caught at least one pass in all 32 games that he appeared in with the Hoosiers.
Weight: 215 lbs
Arm Length: 32 5/8"
Hands: 9 5/8"
Bench Press: 23 reps
Did not paticipate in any other drills at Combine. The following are numbers from his Pro Day.
40: 4.39 seconds
Vertical Jump: 39 inches
Latimer's speed at his Pro Day does not show up on tape, but he is still very quick and can get open with his burst. He has very good size for the position as he is both tall and thick. He carries his frame well and is aggressive with the ball in the air, which is likely an ode to his time as a basketball player. He is a dominant blocker and may be the best blocking wide receiver in the class. He finishes blocks and he has some nastiness to his game.
He was used on bubble screens a lot at Indiana and fits very well as a West Coast offense possession receiver. He has very strong hands and will win by either going up and grabbing the ball or ripping it away from a defender. He will sell out for passes out of his reach. He also possess great concentration in crowds and can make a contested pass into a catch.
Latimer is not elusive and runs upright, which sometimes leads to rounded routes. He is a bit stiff and does not sell his routes all that well. As previously mentioned, his Pro Day speed rarely shows on tape, which likely led his coaching staff to keep him in medium range routes. He makes a lot of contested catches, so it would be nice to see him get more separation. There were games last season where Latimer disappeared against schools like Indiana State and Navy.
The Eagles seem to be infatuated with size, speed and blocking. Luckily, Latimer has all three and could be had in the third round. He would be an interesting replacement in the slot for Jason Avant, who could also rotate with Riley Cooper on the outside and serve as insurance for both Arrelious Benn and Jeremy Maclin. The Eagles have already scheduled a visit with Latimer, which means they at least admire the player. If the Eagles pass on a wide receiver early on in the draft, Latimer would be a great pickup in the third or fourth round.