Have Eagles done enough to find stability at WR this year?


Good luck, Aaron Moorehead. 

The Eagles this offseason hired Moorehead as their new wide receivers coach, the latest in a long line of wide receivers coaches. In fact, he’s the fifth receivers coach in five years under Doug Pederson and he takes over a unit that has seen a similar revolving door of players. 

It’ll be up to Moorehead to help the Eagles find stability at a position where they desperately need it. His mission is similar to the one facing defensive backs coach Marquand Manuel.

In the last four seasons, because of injuries and subpar play, the Eagles have used a total of 21 different receivers! 

Some of the names, you’ve probably tried to block out of your memory. Take a look at total offensive snap counts (regular season+playoffs) of every Eagles receiver in the last four seasons: 

Nelson Agholor: 3,647
Alshon Jeffery: 2,495
Jordan Matthews: 1,355
Torrey Smith: 861
Mack Hollins: 738
Dorial Green-Beckham: 642
J.J. Arcega-Whiteside: 504
Greg Ward: 360
Golden Tate: 306
Paul Turner: 154
Robert Davis: 151
Marcus Johnson: 146
Josh Huff: 134 
Kamar Aiken: 131
Bryce Treggs: 126
Shelton Gibson: 83 
DeAndre Carter: 83
Mike Wallace: 73
DeSean Jackson: 66
Deontay Burnett: 28 
Markus Wheaton: 2 

Think about that list. Matthews is the third player on the list and he accumulated his snaps over three different stints with the team. Smith is fourth and he was here just one season. And Hollins and DGB are next! 

Over the last four years, Agholor leads Eagles receivers in catches (201) and receiving yards (2,232), while Jeffery leads receivers in touchdowns (19).  Think about this now: their best wideouts over the last four years are a former first-round pick who just had to accept a veteran minimum contract with the Raiders and an aging player who’s past his prime, injured, has a bloated contract and might not be the greatest locker room fit. 

The Eagles have been lucky to have one of the best tight ends in the NFL during this span — two of the best since 2018 — but they need more help from their receivers. 

Last season when DeSean Jackson got hurt, the Eagles desperately lacked speed and explosiveness so they went out this offseason and brought in a track team. They drafted Jalen Reagor, John Hightower and Quez Watkins and then traded for Marquise Goodwin. And they’ll get Jackson back in 2020. That’s a good start. 

But the real key when we talk about the position long-term will be Reagor. And to take it a step further, it’ll be the pairing of Reagor and Moorehead. If Moorehead can be the answer as the Eagles’ receivers coach, it should help Reagor’s development. Remember Nelson Agholor’s time in Philly. He spent five years with the Eagles and had five different receivers coaches. It’s hard to find consistency that way. 

There’s no question that Moorehead has plenty of raw talent. But there are questions about every receiver on this roster. Can DeSean and Alshon stay healthy? Does Marquise Goodwin have anything left? Is Greg Ward more than a nice story? Will JJAW rebound from a terrible rookie year? Can this year’s rookies really make an impact? 

Those are the questions awaiting Moorehead in his first season with the Eagles. 

So after Greg Lewis and Mike Groh and Gunter Brewer and Carson Walch, it’ll be up to Moorehead to turn around a position group that hasn’t been nearly as good as it needs to be. 

Moorehead has plenty of talent, but he also has an unusual offseason without OTAs to get them all ready. He has a huge responsibility to get the most out of a position that has been extremely unstable. 

It won’t be easy. 

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