Arrelious Benn came to the Eagles with a reputation for being injured but having great potential if he could stay healthy.
Benn lived up to only one of those reputations.
The Eagles on Friday released the 6-foot-2, 220-pound wideout who missed all of last season -- his first season with the Eagles -- after tearing his ACL early in training camp. He never got the chance to play a single snap for the Eagles
Benn had joined the team last March 15 in a trade with Tampa Bay that also brought in a seventh-round pick in exchange for a 2013 sixth-round pick and conditional 2014 pick.
Benn spent this offseason rehabbing and had hoped to get another chance to impress himself on coach Chip Kelly, who has a preference for physical receivers, but he became expendable after the team used second- and third-round picks, respectively, on wideouts Jordan Matthews and Josh Huff.
After the draft, Kelly mentioned special teams ace Brad Smith, another 200-pounder, as someone who people “really need to talk about” in terms of depth at receiver. He later mentioned Benn but seemed more enthusiastic about Smith.
“We got Brad so late [last year], how does he actually fit in, in terms of what we're doing?” Kelly said. “Had a really, really, really good offseason training and has really showed up here in the first couple of weeks in terms of where he is.”
The Eagles are now off the hook for the $1 million Benn was slated to make this season, but it’s still possible the Eagles bring Benn back at a reduced price tag to compete for a roster spot.
The Eagles also have a slew of other potential roster candidates, including Damaris Johnson, Jeff Maehl, B.J. Cunningham, Will Murphy and the 6-foot-7 Ifeanyi Momah, along with rookie free agents Kadron Boone and Quron Pratt.
Benn was a second-round pick (39th overall) of the Bucs out of Illinois, where he was once named Big Ten Freshman of the Year. He lasted just three years with Tampa Bay, never catching more than 30 passes or three touchdowns in any season.
A knee injury put Benn on injured reserve in 2012, relegating him to just eight games.