Philadelphia Eagles Cornerback Expects DeVonta Smith to Win 1-on-1 Matchups Despite Concerns About His Size

Published 05/21/2021, 4:30 PM CDT
Jan 11, 2021; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide wide receiver DeVonta Smith (6) scores a touchdown during the second quarter against Ohio State Buckeyes safety Marcus Hooker (23) in the 2021 College Football Playoff National Championship Game. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


DeVonta Smith enters the NFL as the winner of the 2020 Heisman Trophy. Awarded to the best college football athlete over the course of a year, Smith became only the 4th wide receiver in history to land the illustrious award. 

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But despite his successes at the college level, there are doubts about how the future star’s size could impact his game. Drafted 10th overall by the Philadelphia Eagles, some believe the franchise has taken a gamble by picking DeVonta. 

Standing at 6’1″ and weighing 175 lbs, questions have been asked whether the wideout can take on the physical demand of being an NFL athlete.

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But Smith’s teammate has no doubts about the wide receiver’s talents. In fact, he thinks the Heisman winner is going to leave opposition cornerbacks in the dirt come next season.

DeVonta Smith looking to prove a point

During a Twitch stream of Call of Duty Warzone, Eagles Cornerback Darius Slay was asked about his thoughts on Smith’s size.

“What’s my take on Smith’s size? I ain’t worried,” Slay said without a moment’s hesitation.

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Slay said that he has interacted with the rookie and sees him making the most of 1-on-1 matchups.

“He’s heading in the right direction. He knows what he’s talking about, he knows how to win 1-on-1 matchups, and that’s what we need from our receiving corps right now. I think he’ll win a lot of 1-on-1 matchups,” he said.

Jan 5, 2021; Tuscaloosa, AL, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide wide receiver DeVonta Smith is announced the winner of the 2020 Heisman Trophy. Mandatory Credit: Kent Gidley/Heisman Trophy Trust via USA TODAY Sports

And once Smith does that, Slay said he most certainly won’t be shocked. “I’m not going to be shocked about it. Y’all might be shocked about it.”

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The Eagles have had their fair share of issues drafting wide receivers in the past. Passing up on rookie sensation Justin Jefferson for Jalen Reagor last season is a memory still fresh in the minds of Eagles fans.

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But despite his size, Eagles fans will hope for DeVonta Smith to help rectify their mistakes of the past. Having a player of his caliber as a wide receiver should also help new starting QB Justin Fields immensely.

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The two played together at Alabama and will hope for some of that past chemistry to help each other click in the NFL.

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Shivayan Roy

754 articles

Shivayan Roy is currently an NFL writer at EssentiallySports. After completing his Masters Diploma in Journalism from the Asian College of Journalism, Roy functioned as a reporter for Goal.com and extensively covered the FIFA U-17 World Cup.

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