Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeVonta Smith entered the 2021 NFL Draft fresh off winning the Heisman Trophy at Alabama. He entered the league and had a solid rookie season. Heading into this year, he is the Eagles No.1 wide receiver and will look to further cement that notion.
Smith was targeted 104 times by quarterback Jalen Hurts, and there were times where Hurts just missed him and didn’t throw. If Hurts and Smith were able to connect even 15 of those times, he easily goes over 1,000 receiving yards on the year or maybe even close to 1,200.
2021 season statistics & fantasy finish
Fantasy: Smith collected 185.6 fantasy points for an average of 10.9 points per game in a PPR league. In a standard scoring league he scored 121.6 points for an average of 7.2 points per game in a standard scoring league.
Stats: In his rookie season he caught 64 passes for 916 yards and three touchdowns. He also averaged about 14 yards per reception.
Eagles offseason moves
The Eagles went out on draft day and traded for Tennessee Titans wide receiver A.J Brown to pair with Smith. They were also able to sign former New York Giants cornerback James Bradberry to play alongside Darius Slay. Along with acquiring Brown, they drafted a pair of Georgia defenders in lineman Jordan Davis and linebacker Nakobe Dean who fell into the third round with an injury.
2022 best case scenario
The best case for him this year is that Hurts improves and can connect with Smith on more passes. If that happens, the second-year pro will eclipse 1,000 yards and could even get double-digit touchdowns. Smith was the third receiver drafted in the 2021 draft, but with a good year, he becomes the second best in the draft class.
2022 worst case scenario
Hurts doesn’t improve as a passer and fails to connect with Smith more resulting in him getting the the same numbers from last year. With Brown in the fold as well, he takes some targets away from Smith. The Eagles ran a simple passing attack last season, and if that doesn’t change. Even in year two of a the Eagles offense, the team struggles offensively.
Smith will achieve his best case scenario because Hurts should become a better receiver. With Brown in the fold, it draws attention away from defenses to help Smith take another step. The Eagles passing attack should not be as simplistic as it had been in the past, which helps the entire offense not just Smith.