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This Torrey Smith stat isn’t very encouraging, but Eagles fans should still give him a chance

Don’t abandon hope.

NFL: San Francisco 49ers at Carolina Panthers Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Shortly after the Eagles officially signed Torrey Smith on Thursday, I couldn’t help but bring up this stat I originally tweeted last November.

I only also recently pointed out how Smith ranked 89th out of 93 pass catchers by Football Outsiders last season.

These stats certainly aren’t encouraging, but they shouldn’t have you writing off Smith entirely.

First, you have to take these metrics for what they’re worth, which sometimes isn’t very much. Back when the Eagles signed Malcolm Jenkins in 2014, he had terrible grades from Pro Football Focus. As a result, a number of Eagles fans were unhappy with the signing. Pretty safe to say the Eagles nailed that signing thought because Jenkins has been great for Philadelphia.

Also, the idea that the 28-year-old Smith is worse than Agholor is silly. Look at what Smith has done over his career.

2011 - 50 receptions, 841 yards, 7 TD

2012 - 49 receptions, 855 yards, 8 TD

2013 - 65 receptions, 1128 yards, 4 TD

2014 - 49 receptions, 767 yards, 11 TD

2015 - 33 receptions, 663 yards, 4 TD

2016 - 20 receptions, 267 yards, 3 TD

Smith has 20 playoff catches for 414 yards (20.7 average) and four scores. Smith is also second among active NFL players in career yards per reception (17.0). He’s only fumbled twice in his entire career.

That kind of production is certainly an upgrade on what the Eagles currently have at wide receiver, which admittedly isn’t very much.

Is Smith the savior for the Eagles? No, certainly not. But there’s reason to believe he can at least be a viable deep threat target for Carson Wentz. For the price the Eagles got him at ($15 million over three years) that’s really not bad.

Smith’s production has certainly declined over the past two seasons. But he also played with some pretty bad 49ers quarterbacks.

Smith deserves a chance to show he can get back on track with Wentz in Philadelphia. No need to write him off just yet.

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