Eagles happy to get receiver who slipped to No. 19

PHILADELPHIA (AP) " Seconds after the Philadelphia Eagles selected Jeremy Maclin, coach Andy Reid let Donovan McNabb know in a text message.

It probably read something like this: "Hey, big guy, we got you a playmaker!"

The Eagles landed a weapon they didn't expect for McNabb, trading up two spots to grab Maclin with the 19th pick in the NFL draft.

A star wide receiver in Missouri's high-octane offense, Maclin was expected to be a top-10 pick in many mock drafts. But he slipped several spots Saturday and the Eagles moved quickly to get him.

"I think it worked out for the best," Maclin said. "I'm a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. I can't complain going to this organization. They have all the guys in the right spots to be contenders every year. They have one of the best quarterbacks in the league. I couldn't ask for a better situation."

The Eagles then bolstered their backfield, drafting Pittsburgh running back LeSean McCoy with the 53rd overall pick in the second round. McCoy provides insurance behind the dynamic-but-injury-prone Brian Westbrook.

"The wait was worth it," said McCoy, who grew up 90 minutes away in Harrisburg. "I knew I fit their system very well. I could learn so much from (Westbrook) and I think I can help him out, as great as he is, because now in the NFL they have this two-back system."

Philadelphia sent its first-round pick (No. 21) and a sixth-round pick (No. 195) to Cleveland for the 19th overall choice.

Maclin becomes the first receiver selected by the Eagles in the first round since they took Freddie Mitchell in 2001 at No. 25. Mitchell was a bust in Philadelphia.

Maclin, a speedster listed at 6-foot and 198 pounds, caught 102 passes for 1,260 yards and 13 touchdowns as a sophomore last season. He's known for stretching the field and making big plays, but also is an effective possession receiver. Maclin is a dangerous kick returner, too.

"I think he's just a heck of a football player, and, on top of that, a quality kid," Reid said. "Very intelligent, very fast, great hands and has return ability."

McCoy, listed at 5-foot-11 and 204 pounds, has a combination of speed and size. McCoy rushed for 2,816 yards and 35 TDs in two seasons at Pitt, including 1,488 yards and 21 TDs as a sophomore last year. He also caught 65 passes for 549 yards and one score.

"He has great quickness, very elusive in the open field, great vision and catches the ball extremely well," Reid said.

McNabb, the five-time Pro Bowl quarterback, hasn't had a true No. 1 target since Terrell Owens was kicked out of town in 2005, less than a year after helping the Eagles reach the Super Bowl.

Two years ago, Philadelphia stunned McNabb by drafting his potential replacement, Kevin Kolb, with its first overall pick in the second round.

But McNabb is still the man in Philly, and he has to be excited about the additions of Maclin and McCoy.

The Eagles, who lost to Arizona in the NFC championship game, were interested in acquiring Pro Bowl wideout Anquan Boldin from the Cardinals. But they couldn't pass up the chance to get Maclin. Reid said the team rated Maclin so high on its draft board they didn't even bring him in for a visit because they expected him to be long gone.

"We thought he was going to go quite a bit higher than what he did, so this was not who we had targeted," Reid said.

Maclin joins a deep receiving corps that includes DeSean Jackson, Kevin Curtis, Jason Avant, Hank Baskett and Reggie Brown. Jackson, a second-round pick last year, led the Eagles with 62 catches and 912 yards to go with two TDs.

"We have some versatility and flexibility," Reid said.

Most draft experts predicted the Eagles would select running back Knowshon Moreno in the first round, but he went to Denver at No. 12. Others had Philadelphia taking tight end Brandon Pettigrew, but the Eagles passed on him and he went to Detroit at No. 20.

Maclin caught 80 passes for 1,055 yards and nine TDs his freshman year. He also ran the ball quite a bit, finishing with 91 carries for 668 yards and six TDs on the ground. Maclin returned three punts and two kickoffs for scores in his two seasons.

"There are a lot of things you can do with him," Reid said. "He ran a ton of reverses and all of the little gadget plays that go with it."

The Eagles have seven picks remaining on Sunday, including four in the fifth round.


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