LAST August I preached patience for our WR’s, yet by seasons end even I’d bailed on Nelson Agholor. I didn’t practice what I’d preached to you all and that is blatant hypocrisy on my part.
I’ve said on a few occasions that Eagles fans need to be better fans, and this time that also applies to me. I need to step-up my game, and be a better fan.
Agholor was drafted in the first round of the 2015 Draft, and had a dismal rookie season. Fans were already murmuring “bust” by the time Training Camp opened in 2016. So I stepped in and said that our WR’s (him included) weren’t beyond help.
I said that the Eagles receivers needed time. Time to learn good habits, and possibly UN-learn bad ones. I implied that this would take patience on the fan’s part. Yet a couple months later, I myself was throwing him under the bus, as much as anyone. It was a despicable thing for a fan to do. It was downright hypocritical. It was also damned unfair.
When Agholor first got here, who were the WR’s he could look up to for help honing his craft? Second year men Jordan Matthews, and Josh Huff, that’s who. Matthews and Huff got a year under Jeremy Maclin and (starter for some reason) Riley Cooper. Matthews played the slot and Huff hardly played at all in 2014. So there were no mentors in 2015 for Agholor. Same goes for 2016 when we traded for Dorial Green-Beckham.
Now in 2017 we’ve added Alshon Jeffrey and Torrey Smith. These are veterans that both Agholor and Matthews can learn from. They have on-field mentors to teach them good habits. (I also felt that former WR coach Greg Lewis was doing that, but the organization needed a fall guy for 2016, and Lewis drew the short straw.)
The result so far is that everywhere I turn, all I read is positive things about what competition is bringing out of Agholor. I watched Matthews on the news the other night, and the competition is already sharpening his demeanor. I’m not one to read much at all into OTA’s, but I’ll admit, I like what the competition is doing for the mental side of things.
I said all that, to say this: I had no business bailing on Agholor so early. Agholor (and even Matthews now) is getting the help I prescribed less than a year ago. The only fair thing to do is rally around them, and root for their success for as long as they wear midnight green. So I will do just that.