Why Alshon Jeffery is worth a look from KC Chiefs
By Grant Tuttle
Earlier this offseason, the K.C. Chiefs let Sammy Watkins walk after his contract expired and have never signed his replacement. While Chiefs general manager Brett Veach has been adamant about his love for former Kansas State standout Byron Pringle, the Chiefs might not be done adding talent to that position group.
While many Chiefs fans are intrigued by the drafting of Cornell Powell out of Clemson, the fact of the matter is that he is certainly not a sure thing. In fact, most receivers taken outside of the top two rounds have trouble making an NFL roster. Not having an X receiver is not for a lack of trying. The Chiefs whiffed on bringing in JuJu Smith-Schuster as he took more money to stay in Pittsburgh. Despite Veach’s insistence, it would appear that maybe the Chiefs aren’t as thrilled at wide receiver as they put on.
While Julio Jones has been rumored to be on the trade block, there is an easier route to competent wide receiver play across from Tyreek Hill. There are several different players in the free agency pool who the Chiefs could kick the tires on as well as names of guys that might get cut before the season begins. However, one name sits above them all who should be intriguing to Andy Reid and the Kansas City Chiefs: Alshon Jeffery.
The K.C. Chiefs should take a closer look at WR Alshon Jeffery.
Jeffery makes sense for Reid’s West Coast offense. Several years ago, the Chiefs signed another former Eagles wide receiver in Jeremy Maclin to fill a very similar role. Further, Maclin was brought in to serve the primary receiver role. Jeffery would come in as the number three guy behind Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill, and he would provide something that the Chiefs currently do not have at receiver: size.
Jeffery’s measurables are as follows: 6’3, 218 lbs. Demarcus Robinson is 6’1 and 203 pounds, Byron Pringle is 6’2 and 203 pounds, and Tyreek Hill comes in at 5’10 and 185 pounds. While there are some guys with considerable size who will likely be camp bodies and practice squad guys, they don’t have anyone outside of Travis Kelce who can go up and make plays in the red zone on a consistent basis. Jeffery is physical receiver who can catch the ball in tight windows. Further, he can make plays on the sideline on back shoulder throws or on underneath routes in the middle of the field.
While there are certainly questions about Jeffery’s ability at this stage—and his statistics show that—there are a number of factors that have played into his decline. For one, he has not been healthy. In fact, last season, Jeffery only played in seven games and started in two. In those games, he only came away with six receptions for 115 yards and one touchdown. This goes beyond injury, however. Some of the blame needs to go toward the ongoing quarterback controversy that bubbled over in Philadelphia and poor offensive play-calling from Doug Pederson, who reportedly did a lot of second guessing.
No matter how you slice it, the Chiefs could use another wide receiver. While Hill, Pringle, Mecole Hardman, and Robinson form a capable bunch of receivers, they lack a player like Jeffery. In the situation that K.C. offers with Mahomes under center, Andy Reid leading the team, and a revamped offensive line, Jeffery could be a great candidate for a comeback.