The Eagles signed another Philly native this past week, Olamide Zaccheaus, adding another slot receiver to the group. Zaccheaus spoke to reporters on Wednesday and talked about the role he sees in this offense, what it’s like to re-unite with former teammates (Marcus Mariota [Falcons], D’Andre Swift [HS]), and what he’s seen from Jalen Hurts.
Zaccheaus said that he stayed patient in free agency but signing with the Eagles wasn’t something he wanted to let fall through.
“You see an opportunity like this, I just told my agent, ‘Let’s be aggressive here, let’s jump on this,’ and that’s what they did.”
Here’s what else the WR had to say:
On his role in the offense
“Part of my game is just being reliable and doing whatever the team needs me to do, whether it’s blocking, in the slot, catching passes. So that’s how I feel like I fit in the offense — whatever the team needs me to do, I’ll do. I feel very confident in what I can do, what I bring to the table. So, we’ll see what that looks like.”
On reuniting with old teammates
Zaccheaus acknowledged that having familiarity with Marcus Mariota from their time in Atlanta together will be helpful, and Mariota can serve as a bit of a bridge to better understanding Jalen Hurts and how he sees the game, and helping with communication.
The WR also grew up in the Philly area, and played with D’Andre Swift in high school.
“That’s my guy right there. We grew up together, played high school ball together, won two State Championships together. Just kept in touch throughout the years, and, I said before, everything’s happening for a reason. He’s exactly where he should be right now, and I feel the same way. It’s just a beautiful opportunity. I kind of talked to him, like just embrace it. Things happened, the nature of the business and whatever, but this is happening for a reason, and I’m glad to be back playing with him and just working with him each day.”
He went on to say that he did wait a day or two before reaching out to Swift, because he wanted to give him a little space knowing how being traded might feel initially.
On early interactions with Jalen Hurts
“His demeanor in the building is like stoic — I guess that’s the word to use —, like he has a calmness about him and it’s comforting in a way because I guess I’m kind of the same way in a sense. Just, like, go to work and I’m working for one thing, to win.
Obviously throughout the offseason, OTAs, training camp, and you know, we’ll build that chemistry on the field, but just seeing him throughout the building, how he works, he’s had the success he’s had for a reason.”
- Coming out of college, his initial scouting reports noted trouble with his hands, but in 2022 he had zero drops. Zaccheaus disagreed with those early reports, and said he’s always been able to catch, but acknowledged there were some inconsistencies that with practice over the years have improved.
- As a former undrafted free agent, the WR said that his advice to incoming UDFAs would be to be a sponge during the whole process. Zaccheaus said you have to learn quickly and you have to make the most of opportunities, and also to be consistent and find a way to pop out on film.