2019 was a drama-filled season in Philadelphia. The drama reached its volcanic eruption when former Eagles cornerback Orlando Scandrick went on FS1's Undisputed to talk trash the team he played for the week prior to the show's taping. The drama continued when rumors started to swirl that Alshon Jeffery was anonymously giving quotes to ESPN insider Josina Anderson critiquing Carson Wentz and the Eagles offense.
After suffering a lisfranc injury in early December, Jeffery was sidelined the rest of the season. Even with a contract restructure before the start of the 2019 season, the injury paired with the anonymous complaint rumors had many fans and beat writers expecting the team to move on from the aging receiver this offseason, even if it meant eating a ton of cap space in the process.
That option appears to no longer be in the Eagles plans. Instead, team insider Dave Spadaro says he will be a big part of the team's offense in 2020.
"The plan is for Alshon Jeffery to be a major part of the offense as he recovers from his Lisfranc injury. He has to complete his rehab, of course, and Jeffery is in the course of doing so. The Eagles have made sure this offseason to get the word out that Jeffery is being counted on and Roseman has had conversations to that extent with having No. 17 in the picture. A healthy and fully focused and hungry Jeffery would be a huge boost for the offense. He eats up defensive backs and the Eagles are fully aware that the last complete game Jeffery played was at Miami, on December 1, and he caught nine passes for 137 passes and a touchdown. He was dominating. Having Jeffery back all the way is an important piece in the offensive puzzle for 2020."
Even though Spadaro expects Jeffery to be a big contributor in 2020, Jeffery might not even see the field for at least the first half of the season. Of course all injuries are different, but two Eagles (Jalen Mills, Cre'Von LeBlanc) suffered lisfranc injuries in recent season, and both missed significant time (Mills missed a calendar year, LeBlanc missed four months).
There's a slim chance Jeffery is ready for the start of the season, but given his age (30-year-old) it's more likely he would start the upcoming season either on the physically unable to perform list or injured reserve. Still, even if he is limited to eight or more games, Spadaro believes #17 will be a major contributor in a revamped Eagles offense.
The team still needs a tall redzone threat with great route-running abilities, and that is where Jeffery would come in. If teams start having their safeties handle the deep-threat receivers and have their linebackers secure Zach Ertz/Dallas Goedert, Carson Wentz will need someone like Jeffery to win those 50/50 balls to help move the chains.
When healthy, Jeffery is still one of the better redzone receivers in the league, and like Spadaro said, in his last full game Jeffery recorded nine receptions for 137 yards, so the talent is certainly still there.
Jeffery recorded 43 receptions for 490 yards and four touchdowns in 10 games last season. If he is able to return to his 2017 form (57 receptions, 789 yards, nine touchdowns), then the Eagles offense could potentially be a top-five offense in the NFL. If injuries continue to hamper him, the team will have to rely on J.J. Arcega-Whiteside to make huge progress in 2020 by turning into the tough, tall receiver the Eagles offense needs. If that doesn't happen then the offense will become much more predictable and easier for defenses to plan for.