The consensus top three wideout in this year’s draft are Oklahoma’s CeeDee Lamb and Alabama’s duo of Jerry Jeudy and Henry Ruggs III. If the Eagles were in a position to grab one of these stars without trading assets to do so, I’d be all for it. But, that’s just not a realistic possibility, and trading up to snag one of these guys would be a mistake.
First off, this draft is absolutely loaded with WR talent. So why trade up to get one when you can get a very good one at your current draft selection? I understand Lamb, Jeudy and Ruggs are considered ‘can’t miss’ prospects, but does Carson Wentz really need one of those three to excel? He should be just fine if the team drafts LSU’s Justin Jefferson, PSU’s K.J. Hamler or TCU’s Jalen Reagor.
By not adding any wideouts in free agency, the front office clearly believes Wentz has the ability to uplift average to below average wide receivers. He did it at the end of last season, and with DeSean Jackson and Alshon Jeffery both coming back healthy, it’s not like he’ll be throwing to practice squad guys again next year.
Let’s not forget the other weapons Wentz has around him as well. He has two top 10 tight ends, a solid duo of running backs and a stout offensive line in front of him. An elite quarterback, which is what we’re paying Wentz to be, shouldn’t need much more than that to win ball games. And with all the moves Howie made to bolster the defense this offseason, Wentz should have a solid defense protecting leads for him next season as well.
At the end of the day, elite receivers are luxuries in this league, and are not essential to winning Super Bowls. Aside from Tyreek Hill last season, can you name the last Super Bowl champion who had a bonified top 10 wideout?
New England has made a living out of using under the radar guys in their receiving corps The Denver Broncos had Emanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas when they won Super Bowl 50, but neither of those guys are top 10 wideouts. The Seattle Seahawks had Percy Harvin and Golden Tate when they won Super Bowl 48, but again, neither were elite receivers at the time.
The point is, receivers don’t win chips. It’s as simple as that. Good defense, solid line play on both sides of the ball, a franchise QB and smart head coaches win Super Bowls in this league. Wide receivers help, obviously, but having a truly elite wideout should not be the number one priority in building a Super Bowl roster.
Competent receivers who are consistent are essential, which is why I still want the Eagles to draft one or two in this year’s draft. I just don’t believe moving up to snag one, when you have a smart head coach and a top 10 quarterback, would be a smart move.