No one could have predicted that Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Nelson Agholor would be the most important free-agent signing after four games.
Raider Nation quickly overlooked the addition of the former USC collegiate star, Nelson Agholor. Especially after having an underwhelming career in Philadelphia, though he earned a Super Bowl ring with them. Even still, many quickly labeled Agholor a “camp body” and not much more, not even a regular-season kind of player. We don’t blame you if you were one of those. After all, the Raiders had plenty of depth at the position and were going to roll with rookies Henry Ruggs III and Bryan Edwards, alongside the returning Hunter Renfrow and Tyrell Williams.
Alas, good drafting and free agent signings can never prepare you for every team’s Achilles’ heel: injuries. In fact, the Raiders wide receiver corps has been completely obliterated by the injury bug. It is doubtful Raiders brass could have foreseen Agholor’s 2020 production but all things considered, it’s been key for the offense.
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What do the numbers show for the Raiders’ receiver?
Against the Buffalo Bills, Agholor caught four passes from quarterback Derek Carr for 44 yards. He found the endzone once while averaging 11 yards a reception. Against the New England Patriots, Agholor notched two catches for 39 yards and averaged 16 yards per catch. The previous week versus the New Orleans Saints, it was a similar story with one catch for 19 yards. Way back in the opening game against the Carolina Panthers, Agholor found the endzone with his only catch for 23 yards.
Agholor’s not breaking yardage records but he has carved up a niche as a big-play target for Carr, sort of the role that we could have expected from Ruggs. No one is saying Agholor has the speed of the first-round pick. Rather, he is making the “big catches” and filling the void left by the Alabama standout. All things considered, Agholor will have to continue finding the endzone with so many Raiders receivers sidelined. Quite a journey in 2020 from “camp body” to a scoring threat.
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*Top Photo: Benjamin Hager/Las Vegas Review-Journal