Eagles

Jefferson, Gandy-Golden headline potential NFL Draft WR options for Eagles

The 2020 NFL Draft is right around the corner and the Philadelphia Eagles will look to upgrade at wide receiver in what is a stacked class at the position.

Howie Roseman didn’t make a splash in the start of Free Agency with numerous starting wide receivers making the move. However, the Eagles did not sign any of them while also losing Nelson Agholor to the Oakland Raiders in the process.

The Eagles ranked 16th in the NFL last season with 253.9 receiving yards per game with tight ends Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert finishing first and second respectively in receiving yards. Running back Miles Sanders ranked third on the team while No. 1 receiver Alshon Jeffery was fourth with 490 yards in 10 games played.

Agholor’s loss leaves the Eagles thin at wideout with Jeffery’s future still undetermined as well as DeSean Jackson coming off a serious injury in 2019. J.J. Arcega-Whiteside disappointed in his rookie campaign while Greg Ward impressed despite only playing seven games.

All in all, the Eagles have to build at the wideout position and after missing in Free Agency, Roseman will have numerous chances to draft receivers this Spring.

Here’s a closer look at one receiver in each round the Eagles should consider:

First: Justin Jefferson, LSU

Justin Jefferson will be one of a possible five wide receivers taken in the first round of the NFL Draft after a successful career at LSU. The defending National Champion broke out in 2019, totaling 1,540 yards on 111 catches with 18 T.D.’s. His four touchdowns in the first half of LSU’s Peach Bowl romp over Oklahoma capped off a strong campaign for Jefferson who is doubled his production for the Tigers.

Standing at 6-feet-1, Jefferson is a quick receiver who has the ability to beat cornerbacks off the break. He showed good instinct and awareness in tight spaces last season and could play both inside and outside for the Eagles.

Second: Denzel Mims, Baylor

A bigger option in the second round, Denzel Mims is coming off an impressive season at Baylor in 2019.

After seeing his yards drop in 2018, Mims recorded his second 1,000 yard season for the Bears, finishing with 1,020 yards and 12 T.D.’s. Showing good size at 6-feet-3, 215 lbs, Mims brings more collegiate experience to the table than Jefferson and is all-around more physical.

His quickness off the snap could hurt him right away in the NFL, but his catch radius was one of the best in college football. Mims could also become a solid blocker with good size and strength behind him.

Third: Tyler Johnson, Minnesota

One of the best at his position over the last two seasons, Tyler Johnson ended his career at the University of Minnesota in style.

Johnson registered his second-consecutive 1,000 yard season, racking up 1,318 yards and 13 T.D.’s. He helped the Golden Gophers to an 11-2 record in 2019 and a win over Auburn University in the Outback Bowl. A tall figure at 6-feet-2, Johnson broke numerous school records last season and will now look to make an immediate impact in the NFL.

He was one of the best at adjusting to passes in mid-air while also showing rare ball skills. His top-end speed may not be compare to several starters in the NFL, but his possession should find him a good home and career.

Fourth: Collin Johnson, Texas

One of the biggest wide receivers prospects in this draft, Collin Johnson’s physical ability speaks far more than his final statistics at Texas.

Standing at 6-feet-6, Johnson never recorded a 1,000 yard season in the Big 12, but was a big target for Sam Ehlinger over the last two seasons. A hamstring injury only saw Johnson play in seven games in 2019, but he made an impact down the stretch for the Longhorns.

His physicality helps him get off the jam in college and should help him at the next level. He is an above-average blocker too and could be a dangerous redzone threat for the Birds in 2020.

Fifth: Isaiah Coulter, Rhode Island

Despite being only a two-year starter at the University of Rhode Island, Isaiah Coulter could be a nice addition later in the NFL Draft.

Improving his production by over 400 yards and six touchdowns in 2019, Coulter is a shifty receiver who brings good side at 6-feet-3. In what was a dismal season for the Rams, Coulter was one of the few bright spots and will now look to carry that over to the NFL.

Coulter remains raw in some areas, but showed good effort and skill down field and could benefit from learning from DeSean Jackson and possibly Alshon Jeffery at the position.

Sixth: Antonio Gandy-Golden, Liberty

One of the top small school receivers in the country, Antonio Gandy-Golden will be a steal for whoever drafts him.

Gandy-Golden totaled over 2,400 yards and 20 T.D.’s over the last two seasons at Liberty University and excelled against some top D1 competition. At 6-feet-4, 220 lbs, Gandy-Golden brings surprise speed to the table as he moves downfield.

His range made him one of the top underrated receivers in this class while also showing the strength to avoid tacklers after making a catch. More known for his ability out wide, Gandy-Golden will need to improve on catching over the middle, but could be a star for the Eagles if he gets the opportunity early.


You can follow Larry Henry on Twitter (@lhenry019) and e-mail him at lhenry1919@gmail.com.

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