Jason Avant, one of the NFL‘s top slots receivers during his eight years here, returned to the Eagles as a training camp coach.
Avant will work with the team’s many wide receivers this summer as part of the Bill Walsh NFL Diversity Coaching Fellowship.
Avant, 37, retired after spending the 2015 season with Andy Reid in Kansas City, but returned to the Philadelphia area and still lives there. He has been a guest on Eagles shows on NBC Sports Philadelphia and runs a trampoline park in South Jersey that is currently under wraps.
He is the fourth former Eagle to join the team in some capacity since the end of the season, after Brent Celek, Darren Sproles and Connor Barwin.
“I am so excited and grateful to be here, to help a group of very talented young players,” Avant said on the Eagles website. “I was a technical catcher. I wasn’t the fastest receiver. I wasn’t the taller guy. I was able to open up by coming out of the line of scrimmage and being precise. is what I hope to help teach these receivers. They are a very talented group. “
Aaron Moorehead is in his first year as the Eagles wide receiver coach, and Avant has known him for almost 20 years – since he was a student at Carver High School in Chicago on a recruiting trip to the ‘Illinois, where Moorehead hosted him.
“I’ve been to Michigan, but I’ve known Aaron for a long time, and he’s a great coach,” Avant said.
Avant never played for Doug Pederson, but he was with the Eagles for four years when Pederson was on Reid’s staff.
“I was a coach when I played,” Avant said. “I was the coach in the receiving room. I approached the Eagles a few months ago and at the time they didn’t know what training camp was going to be like. Then Doug and Howie (Roseman), along with Aaron Moorehead, gave me the green light and here I am. “
Avant played with DeSean Jackson for six years here. Aside from Alshon Jeffery’s rehabilitation, all of the Eagles’ other receivers are 25 years of age or younger and inexperienced. Among them, four recruits, including the 1st round pick Jalen Reagor.
“We have great vets here and we have three young draft picks, Jalen, John (Hightower) and Quez (Watkins), and I’m going to do whatever I can to help them develop their games,” Avant said. . “It’s just not about speed and movement, and they’ve got a lot of that talent. How can I help them get off the press? How can I help Aaron with his program?”
Interestingly, Reagor’s father, Montae – who ended his career with the Eagles in 2007 – was a minority coaching intern with the Eagles in the summer of 2012.
Other former Eagles who have received minority coaching scholarships with the Eagles include Correll Buckhalter, Mike Caldwell, William Fuller, Greg Lewis, Lito Sheppard, Tra Thomas and Duce Staley.
Thomas, Lewis, Thomas, Caldwell and Staley have all become full-time members of the coaching staff at various times, and Staley is now an assistant head coach in his 10th year on the Eagles coaching staff.
The confident forward spent 2006 through 2013 with the Eagles, catching 346 passes for 4,118 yards and 13 touchdowns. He ranks 14th in Eagles history for catches and 15th for yards.
Subscribe and rate the Eagle Eye podcast:
Apple podcasts / Google Play / Stitcher / Spotify / Art19
Click here to download the NBC Sports MyTeams app! Get full coverage of your teams and easily stream Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games to your device.