New Eagles running back Jordan Howard couldn’t help but smile when a reporter started to list all the talented receivers that would be around him.
DeSean Jackson. Alshon Jeffery. Nelson Agholor.
“It is going to be hard for the defense to focus on just one person,” Howard said.
Wearing a gold chain with a photo of his mom and dad in it, Howard was unable to contain his excitement about being in Philadelphia, his new home after the Eagles traded for him last week. With the Eagles, Howard will lineup behind quarterback Carson Wentz, a player that also caused him to smile when talking about.
“I’ve seen Carson Wentz and what he can do,” Howard said. “He is an MVP caliber player when he is at the top of his game.”
If Howard can produce like he has so far in his career it will go a long way in helping Wentz get back to his MVP-caliber play of 2017. Since entering the league in 2016, only two running backs have more rushing yards than the 3,938 yards Howard has gained.
“It shows I am a pretty consistent player,” Howard said. “I can get it done for a duration of time.”
The Eagles are hoping that production will carry over to Philadelphia. The team has apparently made it no secret that they were interested in Howard for quite some time, as Howard said he expected to land in Philadelphia for close to a month.
“I was knew they were going to be my landing spot. I just didn’t know when,” Howard said. “Just from what my agent had been telling me.”
Howard, who will wear No. 24, is expected to fill a number of different role with the Eagles. He will likely be their starting running back, playing on first-and-second downs. He is also their best pass blocker, something their running backs struggled with last season.
“I did meet with Duce Staley in the pre-draft process. I heard he was a pretty good pass-protector,” Howard said, “and I take pride in protecting the quarterback as well.”
The one area Howard might not be able to contribute is in the passing game, as he has been essentially a non-factor through the air so far in his career. Howard clearly felt that he lack of production in that area was due to a lack of targets as opposed to a lack of talent. The running back was quick to highlight that he didn’t drop a single pass in 2018.
Whether Howard will get a chance with the Eagles to prove he can be an impact player in the passing game remains to be seen. With one year left on his deal, it is likely he would welcome the opportunity.
What was very clear in his introductory press conference, however, that Howard is excited to be in Philadelphia.