By Lewis Gould
Eagles Nation is still adjusting to yesterday’s Jordan Matthews-for-Ronald Darby trade.
Cornerback Darby, in transitioning from Rex Ryan’s man-heavy scheme to Sean McDermott and Leslie Frazier’s zone preference, may have been viewed as a poor fit for the Bills. However, in 2016 he actually allowed a lower passer rating (85.2) in zone that in man coverage (123.2).
After running 67.1 percent, 92.7 percent and 92.4 percent percent of his routes from the slot in his three seasons in the league, it will be interesting to see where the Bills use Matthews, as the recently-acquired Anquan Boldin (82.9 percent of his routes from a slot a season ago) appears poised to man the inside for the Bills’ passing game.
Both players will be looking to improve upon shaky 2016 seasons, where Darby allowed the sixth-most yards per coverage snap (1.63) among cornerbacks with more than 355 snaps in coverage, while Matthews was just 35th among 51 wide receivers with more than 337 routes run in yards per route run (1.64).