Eagles Working Reagor to Be a Versatile Weapon
Jalen Reagor, the 2020 first-round pick of the Eagles, is one of the newer and more exciting weapons for Carson Wentz and Doug Pederson. He has blazing speed and has such an amazing mindset as he wants to prove everyone wrong about him. Since being drafted, he has said everything right and has worked his tail off to be as ready as possible for the upcoming season. At first it seemed like he was going to be the "Z" receiver behind DeSean Jackson and just basically have limited routes that are more geared toward his strengths. However, from a report from NFL Insider Adam Caplan, the Eagles will be also be playing Reagor at all the "X" receiver position to have him learn as much of the playbook as he possibly can.
Let’s dive into the pros and cons of the Eagles doing this for Reagor.
Jalen Reagor is a burner, but he has even more versatility than that. At TCU, he showed that he can go up and fight for contested catches even though he is considered short for an outside receiver; he is a strong man. He can take some of the shorter and quick routes such as slants and outs to create separation on the outside that usually would be reserved for receivers like Alshon Jeffrey or J.J. Arcega-Whiteside. Reagor has impressed the Eagles organization from the way he plays and his intelligence, so it should not be surprising that they believe he can handle diving into all the different positions on the field.
The Eagles did this exact same approach with J.J. Arcega-Whiteside last year and that clearly failed. Some guys are very good at certain positions or with certain routes that just can’t transition to other positions. We do not know whether or not Reagor can go up against NFL corners yet with more physical routes and tougher coverage. We also do not know if he will get overloaded with information and end up being like JJAW and being what could be considered a bust. In some scenarios, it is more beneficial for younger receivers to master one position before moving them around the field. Another issue Reagor can run into is that since the off-season was cut short due to the global pandemic, it didn’t allow the Eagles to get him in and guide him as much as they would want to. This is going to be an issue across the league, so for this year, it may be easier to go with simpler packages for the younger players that aren’t as familiar with the systems they are going into.
Personally, if this were a normal offseason, I would be comfortable with this move as he would have more time to learn. However, since it has been cut short, I think it might be a better idea to keep it as simple as possible this year for Reagor and the other young players until they can be in the building more and get comfortable with the playbook.