There was a ton of uncertainty surrounding the future of Philadelphia entering the offseason, but one must say, Howie Roseman has done an impressive job to this point in the offseason. However, nobody worries about Howie's ability to manage the books, but it's his drafting that has everyone frightened about the trajectory of Philadelphia. Year after year Roseman has selected bust after bust, and it has left Philly in a rut with a bunch of players past their prime and only a handful of young players to build around. This has impacted two positions over the last several years more so than any other. You guessed it, the ever so disappointing receiving room and the star gazing corners.
Since Howie Roseman became general manager in 2016, the Eagles have only managed to have two wideouts reach 800 yards, and neither of those two receivers surpassed the 900-yard mark. That is just flat-out atrocious. Over the last two years, Philly has had arguably the worst receiving room in football with only one wideout eclipsing 500 yards. Of the receivers currently on the roster, only two were selected in the first two days of the NFL Draft. These two receivers are JJ Arcega-Whiteside and Jalen Reagor, who have combined for 676 yards and three touchdowns in 35 games, which is yet again flat-out atrocious. If we want to take a trip down memory lane, don't forget Howie Roseman took Jalen Reagor and JJ Arcega-Whiteside over Justin Jefferson and DK Metcalf, who both turned out to be All-Pro receivers and are only 22 and 23 years of age. To sum it all up, Philly has by far the worst receiving core in football, and Howie Roseman hasn't been able to draft a solid receiver even when they hit him on the side of the head with a beach ball. But what if I told you it gets even worse?
When many look at the Eagles’ corners over the last several years, one cannot help but be stunned at how awful they are, but everyone thought that this was fixed with the acquisition of Pro-Bowl corner Darius Slay. Slay had a spectacular 2020 campaign, and he was one of the very few consistent players last season. However, fans fail to recognize Darius Slay as a short-term solution, as he is 30 years of age. Slay was also constantly exposed against All-Pro receivers Davante Adams, DeAndre Hopkins, and DK Metcalf, as he gave up 156 yards-per-game in three contests against the top wideouts he faced in 2020. Slay is starting to regress and he only has a couple of years left in the tank, but he is still one of the best corners in the NFL. Slay himself even admitted he was unable to keep up with some of the younger athletic receivers in the NFL like he once could.
Unfortunately, the Eagles’ corner problems are much bigger than the likes of Darius Slay. The Eagles currently have six outside corners on their roster not named Darius Slay. According to Thomas R. Petersen from Breaking the Birds Youtube, of these six corners, they have nine combined NFL starts, five were undrafted, and the other was a 6th round pick. To put it simply, whoever lined up opposite of Slay in 2020 looked like they were walking in space. They would get blown off the line, juked out on double moves, or simply just get thrown to the ground.
If Philly were to enter the 2021 campaign with this current cornerback room there would be a major problem, as they are set to face at least two-star receivers almost every week. To make matters worse, the NFC East has loaded up with receivers this offseason, as it's almost like they know that's a big weakness for the Eagles. Even if Slay was to lock down the top guy, the second option would pick apart the Eagles’ other starting corner. However, the receiving room is not much better, and I'll leave it up to you to decide which position needs more work, but I think we can all agree Philadelphia is not going anywhere until they fix the receiving core and secondary.