Carson Wentz’s offseason training has begun. After taking a month off to rest his arm, the Eagles’ franchise quarterback spent Friday afternoon throwing to two wide receiver prospects from the 2017 NFL Draft: Cooper Kupp and Chad Hansen. ESPN was first to report Wentz’s workout session.
Kupp is one of the more popular wide receivers in this year’s draft class. The Eastern Washington pass catcher reportedly had a really nice week at the Senior Bowl. BGN draft writer Ben Natan profiled Kupp recently.
Cooper Kupp probably will not be a number one receiver in the NFL. The questions about his ability to play on the outside may limit his production ceiling, but his ability in the slot will make him a very viable NFL player. Assuming his flashes as a route runner become more consistent as he asked to do more in the NFL, he will be an immediate contributor. His age hurts the life of his career, but getting a pro-ready option in an offense on a rookie deal is money well spent. For the Eagles, he does not meet the need for a true number one, but he could be a significant upgrade over at least one of the current starters. Considering his age, taking him on day one would be a mistake; however, he would immediately be of great value on day two of the draft, and would start making a positive impact almost immediately.
Interestingly enough, Kupp was seen wearing Wentz’s “AO1” shirt while down at the Senior Bowl. The two players had never met before this week, but it seems a relationship has now formed there since they share the same agent. Their bond will continue if the Eagles decide to draft Kupp in April. He’s currently projected as a second round selection. Check out Kupp’s game film at Draft Breakdown and watch his highlights in the video below.
The other receiver, Hansen, played for Cal. Hansen measures in at 6-1, 185 pounds. The 22-year-old finished his college football career with 111 receptions for 1,498 yards and 12 touchdowns. CBS Sports ranks him as a third round pick. One NFL draft analyst pegs Hansen as a top-five receiver prospect in this year’s draft.
Hansen’s individual game film is available at Draft Breakdown and his highlights can be found in the video below.
Last month, Eagles executive Howie Roseman told SportsRadio 94WIP that Wentz will have some input into the Eagles’ offseason additions.
“At this point in time it’s so early in the process, the way the league rules are, you’d love to be able to bring him down and have him throw to these guys,’ Roseman said about Wentz. “It just doesn’t work that way. But I think from our perspective, we want to make sure he’s on board with some of these things. Probably more free-agency than the draft because it’s hard for him to get caught up on the draft prospects.”
The Eagles can’t bring prospects to Philadelphia for Wentz to throw to, but that doesn’t mean he can’t do it out on his own. And perhaps he’ll be a little more involved in the draft than expected if he’s able to work out with prospects the way he did with Kupp and Hansen.
Surrounding Wentz with weapons needs to be a top priority for the Eagles this offseason. Philadelphia badly needs help at receiver.
Wentz’s workout with Kupp and Hansen is just the beginning of his offseason training. The 24-year-old quarterback will soon work with quarterback guru Adam Dedeaux. There’s also been talk of Wentz getting together with his Eagles pass catchers (Jordan Matthews, Zach Ertz) some time this offseason to train together.
Wentz’s development this offseason will be critical to the team’s long-term success moving forward. Players typically make their biggest leap from Year 1 to Year 2. It seems like Wentz is more than willing to put the work in, which is a great start.