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Will Eagles target bigger WR in draft to replace DeSean Jackson?

NFL Media analyst Charles Davis wrote Wednesday about some of the top draft fits for the Eagles if the team was to break up with wide receiver DeSean Jackson.

Turns out it was quite the prescient bit of work.

The team cut the Pro Bowl receiver on Friday, and while Chip Kelly's offense is flexible enough to accommodate a number of different types of players, the team no doubt lost a talented playmaker and will now have to replace him -- possibly through the draft.

"This is a deep draft with wide receivers so you have a lot of options in different rounds," analyst Charley Casserly said on NFL Network. "But there may be other positions that are more valuable to them that they may have to look at with this football team, maybe on the defensive side of the ball. If there's an outside linebacker, pass rusher, a corner, a safety."

Recent mock drafts by NFL Media analysts do have Philadelphia opting for a defensive player in the first round at No. 22 overall. The release of Jackson might not completely alter their draft strategy, but they would have options if Kelly wants an impact receiver in the first round.

Among those that Davis thinks could fit the team in the first round are LSU's Odell Beckham, Oregon State's Brandin Cooks, Florida State's Kelvin Benjamin and USC's Marqise Lee. Jeremy Maclin and Riley Cooper are still on the roster, so the Eagles could be satisfied with their options in the speed-receiver department and opt to find a bigger, more physical pass-catcher through the draft.

"Replacing that speed is important but I think Chip Kelly seems to like size in his receivers," Casserly added. "You can create separation in more than one way, size being one of them."

That makes Kelly's visit to Texas A&M's pro day on Thursday that much more notable. While some might have assumed he was there to watch a quarterback he had once recruited in Johnny Manziel, the presence of receiver Mike Evans might have been the real reason he made the trek to College Station. A physically imposing receiver, Evans told CFB 24/7: Path to the Draft he also scheduled a visit to Philadelphia to meet with the team prior to the draft.

Either way, Kelly will have a number of different options he can pick from to replace Jackson. Knowing Kelly, he'll probably go the route that's least expected.

Follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter @BryanDFischer.

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