At least Doug Pederson sees what we all see.
The Eagles’ wide receivers aren’t good enough.
In what was kind of an unusual admission from him, Pederson conceded Monday that the Eagles’ wide receiver play has been inadequate and the team needs to explore adding a wide receiver.
The Eagles improved to 5-4 Sunday with a win over the Bears and go into the bye week having won four of their last six games, but once again their wide receivers were non-factors.
Over the last six weeks, Eagles wideouts have just 45 catches for 426 yards and two touchdowns combined.
“At this point, something we’ll take a look at it,” he said. “We’ve got to take a look at it. It’s real. We’re a little over a game after the halfway point of our season and we have time this week to make this decisions. We’ll take a look at it.”
Alshon Jeffery has been plagued by drops, inconsistency and a lack of explosion, Nelson Agholor has been a non-factor, DeSean Jackson can’t stay healthy, Mack Hollins hasn’t caught a pass since September and J.J. Arcega-Whiteside is barely seeing the field.
The problem is the trade deadline has come and gone, so if the Eagles were going to add a player it would have to be somebody who’s not currently on a 53-man roster.
Antonio Brown is out there, but it's impossible to imagine the Eagles going in that direction.
Former Eagle Jordan Matthews is available, as is recent Steelers castoff Donte Moncreif and another former Steeler, Mike Wallace, who was with the Eagles last year but hurt all year. Greg Ward, who had an impressive preseason, is on the Eagles’ practice squad.
The Eagles thought Jackson’s return would ignite the offense, but after he missed six games — and most of a seventh — he lasted only four plays Sunday before calling it a day.
Pederson said Monday Jackson is undergoing additional tests, and there’s no word when he’ll be back.
Jackson caught two 50-yard TDs in the opener, but since he got hurt Week 2 in Atlanta, Eagles wide receivers have just one TD catch longer than six yards: Agholor's 20-yarder against the Lions.
The longest TD catch by a receiver over the last six games is Jeffery’s 6-yarder in Green Bay.
The Eagles could get away with JJAW and Hollins being non-factors if Jeffery and Agholor were crushing it. But they’ve both been disappointments. Very high-priced disappointments.
“I think overall they’ve been good, but I would say they haven’t been great,” Pederson said. “I think they would echo that. I think yesterday, Alshon had some chances and I believe he would own up to that, to make some of the catches that he missed yesterday. He’s a professional about it, and Nelly the same way. We’ve just got to continue to work with these guys. Every week’s a new week. Every week brings new challenges. … Overall, these guys have been in a position to help us win and have a lot of confidence in both those guys moving forward.”
As for Hollins and JJAW ... Hollins has now played 183 snaps the last five games without a catch. Arcega-Whiteside, the second-round rookie, hasn't caught a pass since the Lions game in Week 3.
“The ball’s going to find usually the open guy, and find the completion that way,” Pederson said. “We’ve just got to continue to work. … That’s where we are.”
Continue to work.
And continue to look.
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