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Zach Pascal and the Eagles unsurprisingly agree to a one-year contract

The Philadelphia Eagles did exactly what we expected of them and signed free wide receiver Zach Pascal to a one-year contract Monday afternoon, according to an official team announcement.

bleeding green nation first wrote about it possibility inevitability long almost two weeks ago (then even earlier today). Here’s what we had to say at the time:

Nick Sirianni REALLY love Pascal.

Check out this quote from when Sirianni was the Indianapolis Colts’ offensive coordinator in 2019:

“Zach Pascal has a block on a linebacker on this play that’s unbelievable,” Sirianni said of a key run in the win over the Titans. “I said to Zach today, I hope he knows that’s the biggest compliment I can give him, I said, ‘I hope Jacob Sirianni, my son, plays football like you.” And I made it very clear to the offensive line that my son wouldn’t be built like them. So, I talked to Zach about it first and Zach was amazing on that play.

Not convinced ? Check out these connections described by my BGN Radio co-host, Jimmy Kempski:

“In his very first press conference after becoming Eagles head coach, Sirianni named Pascal among 13 players he felt he had a special relationship with during his previous coaching stops. […] Ahead of the Eagles’ final pre-season game, Sirianni said he showed the squad video cuts of the players who played in the final pre-season game on the roster bubble and somehow stamped their ticket on the final list of 53 players. Sirianni showed the team. And then finally, Pascal was an integral part of the Sirianni team.guy mentality“Theme the Eagles embraced during Sirianni’s rookie head coaching season, as documented in a great story by Zach Berman of The Athletic.”

Sirianni was Pascal’s offensive coordinator for three seasons. Additionally, Eagles passing game coordinator Kevin Patullo served as Pascal’s positional coach at Indy for two years. It’s easy to imagine the coaching staff will yearn for Howie Roseman to sign him.

This does not necessarily mean that they will get what they want. But Pascal may be exactly what the Eagles are looking for in free agency. And that’s not what most fans would probably like to see: loud, high-end volume. kind of pass-catcher.

The problem with that thought is that the Eagles might not be inclined to break the bank for a veteran receiver. To start, consider that they kicked the ball less frequently (in terms of passing game percentage) than any other team last year. If DeVonta Smith is already failing to get the regular looks he deserves, it’s hard to imagine the Eagles still devoting major resources to it. another one volume goal. The Eagles also praised Quez Watkins, indicating they don’t consider themselves barren at receiver outside of Smith.

No one denies the Eagles need to add more talent at receiver and adding Pascal would hardly be a sexy signing. He averages just 472 yards per season. But the 27-year-old would fit their budget and could very well be called undervalued. Pascal’s numbers were growing until Carson Wentz came to Indy last year. Wentz doesn’t exactly have a long history of getting the most out of his receivers as much as he does with, say, tight ends.

The idea here is that Pascal would be a bloated version of JJ Arcega-Whiteside, i.e. a very good run-blocker receiver who can contribute more than JJAW in the passing game as a legitimate complementary option to the alongside Smith and Watkins. [Plus, he could help on special teams.]

It should be noted that Pascal was not the Eagles’ first option. They reportedly chased the likes of Christian Kirk, Allen Robinson and Calvin Ridley before they got to this point. But with wide receivers barely lining up to play Jalen Hurts, the Birds had to resort to a fallback option.

The Eagles’ signing of Pascal doesn’t stop them from adding more receiver talent, whether through trade or the 2022 NFL Draft. For now, though, the newest addition projects as one of three best receivers on the team. -catchers but Pascal fits mostly in the slot with Smith and Watkins playing on the outside. Jalen Reagor is relegated to fourth receiver (at best) with Greg Ward rounding out the group.

Speaking of Reagor, Pascal shares unfortunate company with the Eagles’ 2020 first-round pick. Of 94 qualified receivers (20% minimum goals), they were the bottom two receivers in Pro Football’s “yards per course” metric. Focus in the last season Not great!

Pascal’s rank in this category in previous seasons:

2020 – 79th out of 101 receivers
2019 – 60th out of 102 receivers
2018 – 102nd out of 109 receivers

Pascal was rated more favorably by Football Outsiders’ DYAR metric outside of last year when he ranked 87th out of 91 qualifying players.

2020 – 37th out of 87 receivers
2019 – 33rd out of 80 receivers
2018 – 65th out of 79 receivers

Conclusion: this is not an exciting addition. The Eagles still need more talent at wide receiver. But the Eagles had to do Something to that position and, well, they did, so there’s this. Pascal could end up being a decent role player for this team.

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Note the signature of Zach Pascal

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