Zach Ertz expects more targets this year

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The Eagles made major changes to their wide receiver group this year with Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith signing as free agents and Jordan Matthews getting traded to the Bills.

That’s led to natural discussion about how the alterations will wind up impacting where quarterback Carson Wentz goes with the ball. Matthews was targeted 117 times last season, which leaves a lot of work for others now that he’s out of the picture. Their tight end thinks that’s going to mean more work for him.

Zach Ertz is coming off a year that saw him rank fifth among tight ends in catches and receiving yards while being targeted more often than anyone other than Matthews. With defenses paying attention to Jeffery and Smith on the outside, Ertz believes he’ll have more room to work in the middle of the field.

“I’ll probably have more targets with Torrey and Alshon,” Ertz said, via “I think that’s the reason you bring in those guys because [defenses] are not able to focus primarily on one area of the field, with where in the past … since [Jeremy] Maclin left, we’ve been an inside-the-numbers team.”

Ertz has closed well in the last two seasons, doubling his catch and yardage totals in November and December in comparison to the rest of the year. If he finds that level of play earlier this season, more targets should be guaranteed.