Camp battle spotlight: Jordan Matthews vs Nelson Agholor
The battle for the slot receiver position might have a lot more to tell about the state of the Eagles receiving corps than just the 2017 season.
With Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith starting on the outside, there is no room for Jordan Matthews and Nelson Agholor. With that being said, if one of those players were to start, it would be in the slot. And right now, it seems Agholor has the upper hand.
Nelson Agholor first in as slot WR. Jordan Matthews next.
— TURRON DAVENPORT (@TDavenport_NFL) July 27, 2017
However, with Matthews is the slot, the Eagles have been able to reap the benefits. Since 2014, Matthews has led the NFL in receiving yards from the slot with 2,389 yards.
But, on the other hand, Agholor was a lethal slot receiver in college and looks a new man in the position.
Why are these two limited to the slot?
Let’s face it, they have not offered much on the outside so far in their career.
Matthews was forced to move around a lot last season and up until he got injured, he was having a good season. However, in his career, 90% of his yards have come from the slot. He is much more of a productive receiver in the slot, and much of that is due to his frame.
As for Agholor, we all know how he has been for the Eagles in the past. When he is playing on the outside, he seems to think too much. He is much more of a natural fit on the inside.
Winner of the Battle
I predict that Matthews is able to claim back his throne and win this battle. He looked to be Carson Wentz’s favorite target last season and I expect those two to build on their relationship this season.
I still expect Agholor to get his shots in the slot and outside, as the Eagles like to move their receivers around in different packages. However, if I were to place my money on one receiver getting the majority of snaps in the slot, it is Matthews.
Outlook for the rest of the team
Like forth noted, this battle will tell us a lot about the future of the Eagles receiving corps. Having just one year left on his contract, if Matthews is to win this battle and impress the Eagles, he will ultimately get a new contract.
However, with the Eagles new free agent receivers on one-year deals too, there is not enough money for all of them. Either Matthews or Agholor will likely leave the team in the coming year. Which one? Expect to have good insight after this camp battle is done.