DK Metcalf, the Seattle Seahawks’ star wide receiver the Philadelphia Eagles could have drafted but didn’t, made the Eagles miserable on Monday night. Metcalf had a career game, making 10 catches for 177 yards in the Seahawks’ 23-17 win over the Eagles.
Metcalf has been a superstar since the moment he stepped onto an NFL field, so his great game shouldn’t surprise anyone. His Monday night performance had a little more juice behind it than normal. Metcalf played with a chip on his shoulder thanks to a compliment from Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz that might have been misunderstood.
Schwartz compared Metcalf to Megatron
It appears this all started before the game with a conversation between Schwartz and Metcalf. According to Schwartz, he was complimenting Metcalf by comparing him to Megatron, AKA the great Calvin Johnson. Schwartz was with Johnson in Detroit, and says he told Metcalf that he’s the closest thing to Megatron that he has seen.
That’s an incredible compliment, but Metcalf’s side of the story is different.
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“One of the defensive coaches came up to me and kinda made me mad that he was like ‘I was in Detroit with Megatron, but you’re not there yet.’ In my mind I’m not trying to be Megatron, I’m trying to be me. I had a little chip on my shoulder the whole game.”
Later that night, Metcalf couldn’t resist getting in one more dig at Philly.
How did it really go down?
So did Schwartz tell Metcalf that he’s the best wide receiver since Johnson, or did he tell Metcalf that he’s not at that level yet? We can’t know, but there are two things to consider.
First, it’s hard to imagine an NFL coach walking up to a second-year wide receiver before a game and saying “you are not as good as one of the greatest wide receivers of all time, and I would know because I coached him.” Not just because it’s mean and completely unnecessary, but because Schwartz is a football lifer and knows how the minds of athletes operate.
That brings up the second point: athletes are competitive monsters who will look for bulletin board material anywhere. Even if the conversation went down as Schwartz described, Metcalf still could have taken offense to it. He even said it: he doesn’t want to be compared to Megatron because he’s just trying to be himself.
It doesn’t really matter which way it happened. Metcalf didn’t like Schwartz’s comments and decided to use them as fuel to power the best performance of his young career. The Eagles still lost, and fans are still left to wonder what the team would be like if they’d drafted Metcalf instead of JJ Arcega-Whiteside in 2019. Unfortunately, they’ll be wondering that for a long, long time.
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