You know what?
I kind of feel bad for offensive coordinator Mike Groh. Just a bit.
I’ve sat here and ripped the Eagles for their non-usage of Golden Tate since the signing, but now I really wonder if they even needed him in the first place.
Remember those stories? Everybody wrote about Tate being a slot receiver and how his skill set overlapped with Nelson Agholor and even Jordan Matthews, who was also signed in the middle of the season.
Howie Roseman poo-pooed the idea that there was redundancy in the slot. From October:
You have versatility there. All of those guys can play inside and out. That’s the excitement that our coaches have: you’re not just having one guy lined up in a particular situation and the defense knows that this guy is going to line up there. For us, that’s another part of the excitement of bringing in this guy: his inside-out versatility. It’s the same with Nelly; he has inside-out versatility. Alshon lines up inside and out. Our coaches have a game plan for all of those guys and certainly [for] our tight ends in the middle of the field and the damage that they can do. And we are going to get some guys back [from injury], too.
So we want to be multiple on offense; we want to be a handful for defensive coordinators. This guy is a heck of a player and I think our fans are going to be really excited to see him in Eagles green.
Instead of being multiple, they ended up being very singular. When Alshon Jeffery got healthy, the Eagles had a decent wide receiver group to play alongside Zach Ertz and their top draft pick from April, Dallas Goedert. The only thing missing on paper was somebody to stretch the field ala Torrey Smith, which is what Mike Wallace was supposed to do.
Tate played less than 50% of the snaps in Sunday’s loss, and Groh was asked about that at his weekly press conference, after the jump: