Damaris Johnson has been flashing big-time skills early in Philadelphia Eagles training camp, being un-coverable during the individual and team drills. While he may not have the blinding speed of a guy like DeSean Jackson, he is far and away the quickest player in short, compact spaces on the team, and quickness is a trait Eagles head coach Chip Kelly covets.
Johnson has been quarterback Nick Foles‘ favorite target early in training camp, and even players on the defense have lauded his ability to get open and create separation. He has the potential and ability to be a menace in the middle of the field with his ability to be too quick for linebackers and too shifty for opposing slot corners.
There has been plenty of talk about the thin depth the Eagles now have at receiver with Jeremy Maclin going down for the season due to injury, and Riley Cooper dealing with his situation. It’s been loud enough that some are suggesting that Johnson and Jackson should start together.
I am not of this thinking. This would give the Eagles arguably the smallest duo of receivers in the league, and Johnson’s abilities are best suited inside where his quickness and various moves can be best utilized.
Johnson is exactly the type of athlete coach kelly coveted at Oregon. Quick twitch athletes like De’Anthony Thomas thrived in Kelly’s up-tempo system that spread the defense out. Johnson comes from a spread offense in college similar to what Kelly deploys, so his transition to a brand new offense should be seamless.
He has been wowing on the field so far early in August. Will he be the Eagles’ secret weapon and come September? Only time will tell.