Jon Gruden Has Telling Insight on Raiders WR Nelson Agholor

nelson agholor

Getty New England Patriots WR Nelson Agholor.

The signing of Nelson Agholor was one of the more under the radar moves by the Las Vegas Raiders this offseason. The former first-round pick recently finished up his rookie deal with the Philadelphia Eagles and it doesn’t seem like the team tried very hard to re-sign him. He had a couple of decent years with them but it’s hard not to think of him as a bust due to his draft status and how good he was in college.

Jon Gruden loves to try and fix former first-round picks and Agholor is his latest project. The two men actually go back as the wide receiver is from Tampa, Florida, and met the coach when he was living there. Gruden even went so far as to call out the Philadelphia media for treating Agholor unfairly.

“He is a good player,” Gruden said, per Vic Tafur of The Athletic. “You can pick up the Philadelphia Inquirer and they will probably say something different, but this guy has caught over 200 passes, he is a young guy, he has played split end, flanker and in the slot. He caught eight or nine passes in a Super Bowl and won a Super Bowl. So he’s a world champion. He’s a great person … and he can return punts.

“I trust him and I think he was picked high in the draft for a reason. A change of scenery worked for Randall Cunningham, maybe it will work for him.”

Changing scenery has worked for a number of players before and Agholor certainly does have talent. Gruden believes in him and that could give him a shot to turn things around.

Agholor Talks Gruden

Gruden has earned the reputation as one of the NFL’s biggest characters. While that might rub some the wrong way, the players on the Raiders roster right now love the coach. Agholor has a chance to praise Gruden.

“[Gruden] loves the game of football and that’s No. 1,” Agholor said. “He has a Rolodex of information of whether it be route cutups, situational, on-the-run decision making. And he doesn’t hesitate to, right off the bat, coach you. Because you can hear one thing and something else pops up and he’ll tell you, ‘This is what you do! This is what you do!’

“You run a play and he’s expecting you to think like how he thinks. And every day he’s communicating that, and I think that’s a beautiful thing.”

Gruden eats, sleeps and breathes football and that really resonates with some players. The jury is still out on whether or not he can be successful in his second stint with the Raiders but there’s no doubt that his players trust him.

“So, it’s a blessing to be in this opportunity and having a previous relationship,” Agholor said. “But at the end of the day, I chose this relationship because he knows the game, and all I want to do is learn and be a better player.”

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Raiders New WR Corps

The Raiders wide receiver corps was a dumpster fire last year but could be significantly better in 2020. Agholor joins rookies Henry Ruggs and Bryan Edwards as some of the new exciting faces that Derek Carr will be able to throw to.

Though he probably won’t ever be higher than the third or fourth option out wide for the team, he could make some plays. The Raiders desperately needed more depth at the position last year. Once Antonio Brown was cut and Tyrell Williams got hurt, the team had very few viable options to replace them. That shouldn’t be the case in 2020.

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