Yeah, I’m without a doubt on an island with this take.
Type in “Jalen Reagor” in any search engine or any social media platform and all you’ll find is negativity. Which, to be honest, is warranted and expected.
Not only has Reagor disappointed in his first two NFL seasons, he hasn’t reached even the most minimal of expectations. The Justin Jefferson sized cloud that hangs over him is one thing, very few receivers produce at such a rapid pace in their first two seasons. But Reagor has failed to produce much of anything.
Reagor was ranked as the 118th-best wideout in football this season according to Pro Football Focus. He regressed in certain areas, which seemed impossible to do considering how anemic his rookie campaign was. In 2021, he hauled in 33 of his 57 targets for 299 yards and two touchdowns while averaging just 17.6 receiving yards per game. It was a terrible season for Reagor, through and through.
But the fact of the matter is, this organization isn’t about to give up on a 23-year-old former first-round pick. That’s a realization most fans need to comes to terms with. Cutting him saves virtually no money and there’s no trade market for the guy. The Eagles are stuck with him for at least more year.
To me, that’s a good thing.
We’ve heard the Nelson Agholor comparisons ever since Reagor entered the league and they reign true. Like Reagor, Agholor was one of the worst receivers in football during his first two seasons. The numbers say he was actually slightly worse than Reagor.
Here’s how each receiver faired in their first two seasons:
Reagor: 64 receptions, 695 yards, three receiving touchdowns in 28 games
Agholor: 59 receptions, 648 yards, three receiving touchdowns in 28 games
Agholor also posted worse PFF grades in his first two seasons, recording an abysmal 48.7 grade in his rookie season and a 52.6 mark the following year. Reagor posted a 64.0 grade as a rookie and a 56.2 grade this season.
Aside from their similar trajectories, their individual stories are eerily similar as well. Both were first-round picks with a lot of expectations and both dealt with hiccups on the mental side of the game throughout their first two NFL seasons.
We could go on all day with this comparison. The point is, Agholor deserved another year to finally solidify himself as an NFL wide receiver and he was able to achieve that. It was a never a question of physical talent with Agholor, it was about whether or not he could just put it all together. The same can be said for Reagor.
We know he has the skill set to succeed in this league, it’s just about figuring out how to put that skill set to good use. At 23 years old, there’s no reason to think these past two seasons are going to define Reagor’s career. It didn’t define Agholor’s career, and now he’s s starting caliber receiver in the NFL.
Will Reagor ever be a bonified No. 1 receiver? Probably not. But that doesn’t mean he can’t be a productive player for years to come. As it stands right now, the jury is still out on Reagor. And anyone who thinks otherwise is just getting caught up in the moment.
If he doesn’t produce next year, then yeah, maybe Reagor isn’t cut out for the NFL. But I’ve seen too many receivers pop in year three or four to completely give up on this guy right now.