Goedert could be headed to big year for Eagles

Tight end Dallas Goedert knows he’s in a different place than a year ago when he was a fresh-faced, wide-eyed rookie learning his way around the Eagles locker room, much less the offense. He’s now a seasoned player who thinks that, after taking part in the team’s workouts through the spring, “The sky is the limit, honestly,” for this offensive attack. He might be right. The Eagles are loaded. And Goedert must be a part of the fun, a big part.

Goedert, you see, is the Next Big Thing in the Eagles’ offense. He’s a highly athletic, powerful pass catcher and runner who could be a devastating partner in a tight end machine teaming with Pro Bowler Zach Ertz. The Eagles spent the spring evaluating their players in various personnel groupings and sets and what they learned – well, what they thought they knew based on his rookie season and what was confirmed through an outstanding spring – is that Goedert is a stud. A stud’s stud. The kind of player who can make a difference even in an offense with a Pro Bowl tight end, terrific wide receivers and a revamped backfield.

Goedert is the new Weapon X (apologies to Hall of Famer Brian Dawkins).

“I’m comfortable in the offense and I know I’m ready for whatever role they have in mind for me,” Goedert said as the team’s mandatory minicamp ended at the NovaCare Complex. “I’m not thinking out there, like I was as a rookie. I know the offense and so I’m just able to go out and play and have fun and play fast.”

The Eagles’ first selection in the 2018 NFL Draft (49th overall, in the second round), Goedert contributed 33 receptions, 334 yards and four touchdowns in his first NFL season. He’s a huge target at 6-5 and 256 pounds and with strong hands, speed and the ability to break tackles, Goedert gives the Eagles, in reality, two tight ends who are top 10 in the NFL in talent. So, the question is this: How do the Eagles best maximize Goedert in the context of teaming him with Ertz?

“That’s one of the things we’re looking at,” head coach Doug Pederson said. “We know we have a great situation there. We have playmakers all over the offense. It really comes down to matchups and where we think we can create the most favorable situation in that particular game. Dallas is one of the players who defenses have to account for. He has skills, and we intend to use them. He’s going to play a part in the offense.”

The question, when all is said and done, is how much the Eagles can incorporate such a talented player like Goedert into a galaxy of proven players like receivers Alshon Jeffery, DeSean Jackson and Nelson Agholor, along with Ertz and even running back Jordan Howard, another key player the Eagles acquired in a March trade with the Chicago Bears? Ultimately, Goedert is talented enough to be a difference-making player. Will the Eagles find ways to feed him the football and break defenses’ backs?

As much as the other players are generating the offseason headlines, Goedert could be the factor that pushes the offense over the top. Monitoring his contributions throughout the season could very well coincide with the end zone-to-end zone success the team is having. That’s how good Goedert is, and how much he means to this offense in 2019. ••