One glaring difference between the 2017 and 2018 Eagles offense, besides Quarterback health/performance is the lack of deep threats for this year’s squad. In 2017, the likes of Torrey Smith, Nelson Agholor and even Mack Hollins seemed to provide 20+ yard plays week in and week out, where this year is just game after game of dink and dunk.
While there are absolutely other factors to contribute to this lack of explosiveness, no one can deny the lack of player on the Eagles roster that strikes fear into defenses as a guy who can hit a home run on any given play.
Nelson Agholor and Alshon Jeffery are both really good players, but they best serve as slot players and red zone targets, respectively. Agholor made big plays last year, but that seemed more a product of defenses not concentrating on him the way they are this year.
The team has a decision to make about Golden Tate this offseason, but even he can’t provide that spark the offense requires. Mack Hollins and Shelton Gibson are both guys who could develop and Agholor’s best football is possibly still ahead of him. However, there are a lot of “ifs” with this group that doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence heading into 2019.
While adding receivers is far from the number one priority this offseason, it’s something the Eagles should certainly consider. Here are some burners the Eagles could have interest in this spring.
-Marquise Brown, Oklahoma: One of the more obvious choices… “Hollywood” Brown is set to be a polarizing draft prospect. On one hand, his diminutive size will scare some teams and analysts, understandably. On the other hand, his game changing speed and smooth route running ability is hard to pass up for big-play hungry teams.
-JJ Arcega-Whiteside, Stanford: Stanford’s passing game looks more explosive than ever this year and that can be attributed in part to JJ Arcega-Whiteside’s tremendous impact on the team. The 6’3”receiver has a ton of speed for his size and his catch radius means he’s open even when he’s not. Arcega-Whiteside might be best receiver this year, and too rich for the Eagles. However, of he fell to the Birds, they would have to take a long look at him.
-DK Metcalf, Ole Miss: Ole Miss had one of the best receiving duos in college football and while DK Metcalf might not be the best prospect of the two, he fits the Eagles needs. He’s a pure athlete and the Eagles would love his big play ability.
-Parris Campbell, Ohio State: This is a guy I may end up really pounding the table for. Campbell is Ohio State’s most productive receiver in a while and his athleticism makes him dangerous on every touch. He is a guy who can be a deep threat, a yards after catch threat and can even line up in the backfield. Campbell is possibly the fastest prospect this year and the Eagles could get him in the second round.
The list of needs for the Eagles is long. However, the reload of the offense will require some speed in the receiving group.