Eagles Notes: Eagles see big role for drafted RB

Posted: April 26, 2009

LeSean McCoy already has something in common with Ricky Watters and Tony Dorsett.

The Eagles hope he has something more in common with those two running backs when his NFL career is over.

McCoy attended the same high school - Bishop McDevitt in Harrisburg - as Watters and the same college - the University of Pittsburgh - as Dorsett.

In need of a running back to serve as Brian Westbrook's understudy, the Eagles thought enough of McCoy to make him their second-round draft pick last night.

"We thought he had great quickness and was very elusive in the open field," coach Andy Reid said. "We also thought he had great vision inside the tackles and he catches the ball extremely well."

In two seasons at Pitt, McCoy ran 584 times for 2,816 yards and 35 touchdowns. He also caught 65 passes for 549 yards.

The Eagles hadn't selected a running back higher than the third round since 1994, when they took Charlie Garner in the second round.

McCoy, who turns 21 in July, said he thinks he can make an immediate contribution to the Eagles' offense, and that sounds like what Reid has planned.

"It was such a crazy day," McCoy said during a conference call. "I was waiting and waiting and waiting, then being drafted by the Eagles made it all worth it. I know I fit their system very well. In the NFL, you have the two-back systems now, and I feel like I can come in there and help Brian Westbrook."

Reid said he thinks McCoy can pick up the Eagles' West Coast offensive system quickly.

"He got a little taste of it at the college level, so it won't be completely foreign to him," Reid said. "He gives us a little depth at running back. Most likely, he'll get a lot of reps in there, so we'll see how it works out."

During McCoy's visit to the NovaCare Complex last month, Reid said the Eagles gave the running back a test on the offense.

"We were teaching him to see what he retained, and he seemed to do a nice job with that," Reid said. "I think he can handle this and contribute."

The one area upon which McCoy must improve is picking up blitzes.

"He was adequate, but he needs to get better," Reid said. "They asked him to cut block [at Pitt] more than we cut block, but that was part of their scheme. We'll ask him to stand up more."

McCoy said he has met and spoken with Dorsett, a Hall of Famer who won a Super Bowl with Dallas, and is actually close with Watters, a former star running back with the Eagles and San Francisco 49ers.

"I know Ricky really well," he said. "I called him when I was visiting Philly, and he said all positive things about the team and the city."

Reid on Brown

Reid was asked last night if he had concerns about cornerback Sheldon Brown, who publicly requested a trade Monday and has since made some strong statements about his future.

"I think he'll come in and he'll work," Reid said. "That's the kind of guy he is. He's a pro, and he'll come in and do what he has to do."

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