Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Philadelphia Eagles [Print without images]

Thursday, May 15, 2014
Penn State coach praises Jordan Matthews

By Andy Jasner

James Franklin gushed when asked about a pair of the newest members of the Philadelphia Eagles.

Franklin is currently the head coach at Penn State and his last coaching stint came at Vanderbilt.

Franklin coached wide receiver Jordan Matthews, taken by the Eagles with the No. 42 overall pick in the NFL Draft, as well as kicker Carey Spear, who was signed by Philadelphia as an undrafted free agent.

"I've got a man-crush on Jordan Matthews," Franklin told Comcast SportsNet's Derrick Gunn during a stop on the Penn State Coaches Caravan Tour. "I love that guy."

The 6-foot-3 Matthews holds the SEC record for career receptions with 262 among other impressive marks.

"I think the thing about him more than anything is he wants to be the best wideout," Franklin said. "Although now he's happy to be in the NFL, he won't be happy with that until he's the best guy in the NFL."

Franklin said that he thoroughly enjoyed coaching Matthews and continued with his praise.

"Now he's got the mentality, and that's what it really comes down to," Franklin said. "It's your heart, it's your desire, it's your drive. He's got the tools. That's why he was taken in the second round. What I love is he's got the other characteristics that allow guys to be successful."

Meanwhile, Spear's nickname at Vanderbilt was "Murderleg."

"This is the first time I've ever heard about his nickname, to be honest," Franklin said about the kicker's ability to hit players after his kickoffs. "Not only will he kick, but he'll run down and cover and light guys up. I'm a huge fan of Carey Spear."