2008 Free Agents: Wide Receivers
By Zachary Best
Everybody’s favorite off season subject is which wide out should the Eagles bring in. Many Eagles fans are obsessed with Wide Receivers. Rumors surface about trading for Chad Johnson, then Roy Williams, and then Larry Fitzgerald. WR is clearly running away with the Poll I posted.
While I do not count out a major trade for a big name receiver this off season, I would seriously doubt that happening. I do think this team needs 1 more receiver in the mix. Before I get into who I think the Birds should pursue, I will give a short analysis of the teams receivers.
Kevin Curtis had an excellent season. There were games where Curtis disappeared, and you don’t like to see that, but overall he had a very good year. He is obviously coming back next season, and should have a big role in this offense.
Reggie Brown started off very slow, but turned it around the second half of the season. I wonder if he even got a paycheck for the first seven games, because he really didn’t show up. As McNabb got healthier he seemed to start finding Brown a lot more, and Reggie’s production picked it up. Overall it was a disappointing year for him, since he was expected to be the number 1 receiver at the beginning of the year.
After that there was almost no production from the WR position.
Jason Avant started off week 1 with a nice touch down grab, and it looked like he was going to secure that third WR spot. He then went on to be invisible for the remaining 15 games, and was a complete failure.
Hank Baskett barely played at all, except on special teams. Since he was labeled the next coming of Jerry Rice two Summers ago by everybody in the world, you would think he would play more.
Greg Lewis made an occasional appearance here and there. He had a great game against New England, but didn’t do much other than that.
There has to be more production from the bottom half of the receiving core. A guy I think that could really help is Bernard Berrian of the Bears. Berrian is a young receiver with blazing speed on the outside, and great hands. He makes a ton of acrobatic catches, and could be the field stretching player the team is lacking.
There is a chance Berrian might get franchised, but the Bears do not do use that designation very often. If he does reach free agency another obstacle is that his agent is Drew Rosenhaus. I know there is probably some bad blood still, but the Eagles just have to look past that and get a player to help the team. That DB has too many clients not to deal with him.
With Berrian in the mix, you could use Kevin Curtis in the slot for 3 WR sets similar to how New England used Wes Welker this past year. Curtis has a similar skill set to Welker, and could be great in that role. In two WR sets you could rotate Berrian, Curtis, and Brown to keep them fresh. It really would not matter who is the 1, 2, or 3 receiver. As long as they have 3 solid guys this offense can be explosive.
A guy who I think may fly under the radar a little, is D.J. Hackett from Seattle. He slowly became a very solid receiver for the Seahawks, and could be a good addition for the Eagles. He already knows the west coast offense, and would instantly become the teams third receiver.
Andre Davis is a good veteran receiver who has great speed. I think singing him would also be a solid move to make. He could probably be had for cheap(Banner special), and would make a very good 4th receiver.
Here is the list of all the top WR free agents:
Free Agent Wide Receivers
Key Restricted Free Agent WRs
|–||Jerome Mathis||Houston Texans|
|–||Nate Washington||Pittsburgh Steelers|
|–||Jerheme Urban||Arizona Cardinals|
|–||Rashied Davis||Chicago Bears|