Rewind to the beginning of the offseason and the release of veteran wideout Alshon Jeffery felt like a foregone conclusion. He had suffered a major foot injury that would take nearly the entire offseason to rehab, his production dropped off a cliff and rumors persisted that he and Carson Wentz didn’t get along.
The only thing that seemed like it may put a hold on the departure was Alshon’s contract. Releasing him prior to to June 1 would leave the Eagles with $25 million in dead cap and would decrease their available cap by $10 million.
Despite all the rumors and the growing dismay for Jeffery among the fanbase, Howie has gone on record numerous times throughout the offseason regarding Alshon, and he’s had nothing but great things to say about him.
The team wants him on the field in 2020, and they want him there as their No. 1 wideout. Roseman’s said that their number one goal with Jeffery is getting him healthy and ready for the season.
While Roseman hasn’t spoken publicly about Alshon for a few weeks, Eagles insider Dave Spadaro offered an interesting tidbit on how the organization feels about Alshon ahead of the 2020 campaign. In an article published to the Eagles official site, Spadaro writes:
“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 yards and a touchdown. He was dominating. Having Jeffery back all the way is an important piece in the offensive puzzle for 2020.”
Of course, this is just Dave’s opinion, but what he wrote echoes what we’ve heard from Howie throughout the offseason regarding Jeffery. If he was ever going to get cut, it would’ve happened by now.
It’s easy to look at Jeffery’s 2019 season in a vacuum and conclude that he’s just not good anymore, but I don’t think that’s a fair assessment. He suffered numerous injuries throughout the year and he tried his best to play through them. When he suffered the Lisfranc against the Giants in week 14, the team was already down two wideouts, DeSean Jackson and Nelson Agholor. Alshon was trying to help the team, the injury bug was just too contagious on last year’s squad.
A fully healthy and motivated Alshon will help this offense. He’s still the best overall receiver on the team and he should benefit greatly from all the added speed around him.
Fans many roll their eyes at anything Alshon related, but we should be excited about the prospect of what he can bring to Doug Pederson’s offense in 2020.