Seeing the chemistry between Eagles quaterback Carson Wentz and wide receiver Jordan Matthews wasn’t hard to see.
From end zone celebrations to offseason trips together to just shooting the breeze in the locker room, the two were attached at the hip.
Until Friday afternoon, when the Eagles decided to ship Matthews and a third round pick north to Buffalo to bring in cornerback Ronald Darby.
“It’s the tough part of the business,” Torrey Smith, another of Wentz’ wide receivers said. “It’s a business and you’re the product. Him and Carson are real friends, not just football friends. It’s a tough loss for our locker room.”
Wentz, of course, is a professional and has nothing to worry about when it comes to having weapons on offense. He still has Alshon Jeffery, Smith, a surging Nelson Agholor, LeGarrette Blount, Darren Sproles, Zach Ertz and a bevy of other toys to play with when throwing the football. But the personal relationships can become very strong in a locker room, as offensive coordinator Frank Reich knows first hand.
“Jordan was a leader in that group but he wasn’t the only leader,” Reich said after practice Monday. “It was really hard for Carson. Those guys were super close. They had a really good chemistry. I think everybody in this business understands you need to be both personal and professional.”
Keeping the two seprate can be difficult, but is as necessary in the NFL as in any other career — possibly more.
“I have no doubt it happened multiple times with a trade or a cut,” Reich said, “and once you are close you are always like that. That feeling never goes away. I think back to players I was close with and one gets traded — it doesn’t fade.”
Matthews was diagnosed with a sternum chip after his first practice in Buffalo and his status is unknown.