Jalen Reagor Handling Weight Issue, Mind and Physique are in a Good Place

The Eagles WR is at a more comfortable playing weight and ready to move on from his challenging rookie season
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PHILADELPHIA - Most every NFL player has some kind of clause added into his contract, a list of do's and don'ts to protect both player and team.

Many of them, like the one in Jalen Reagor's contract, have to do with weight.

Reagor’s father, Montae Reagor, told SI.com’s Eagle Maven that the ideal playing weight for his son is 191 pounds, which is what Jalen currently weighs.

It's a weight that allows him to play quicker, faster, and stronger.

It's also a weight that Jalen had some difficulty maintaining throughout last season.

While rookie WR DeVonta Smith is perceived to be on the too-slight side at 166 pounds, Reagor sometimes went over the 193-pound weight limit they set for him, and that led to him getting fined twice for being three pounds overweight, according to a team source.

Sometimes, bigger isn't always better, a lesson that Jalen has learned after a rookie season that saw him struggle with injury and not show the explosion the Eagles saw on tape from him while at Texas Christian University.

Perhaps thinking bigger is better, Reagor showed up at the NFL Scouting Combine listed at 206 pounds despite weighing 195 pounds in his final year with the Horned Frogs.

The 11-pound weight increase negatively impacted the receiver’s combine performance, especially during the 40-yard-dash, where general manager Howie Roseman was stunned he ran a 4.47.

Reagor shed nine pounds quickly to perform for his virtual pro day. The receiver was back to 197 pounds while posting a 4.22 in the 40-yard-dash, 3.97 short shuttle, and 6.72 3-cone.

Jalen Reagor

Jalen Reagor

The Eagles always felt Reagor was one of the most explosive players in the entire 2020 NFL Draft.

If the extra weight was such a hindrance at the combine in terms of his explosiveness, imagine what even being three pounds over the playing weight Philadelphia desired impacted the role the team laid out for him.

Despite dealing with injuries, a pandemic, and a broken offense, the lack of production from Reagor became the focus of all those who questioned Philadelphia’s original selection of him 21st overall. 

"I really didn’t get hurt until I got to the NFL, so I mean the little injury bug that I had, you have to go through something to be somebody," he said. "So I feel like that was just testing my character. I feel like, me being healthy, the best ability is availability. As long as I’m healthy, I feel like everything is going to go great."

The WR is intent on putting the past in the rearview mirror and is putting action into his quest.

“I worked out with Jalen (Hurts), Quez (Watkins), (Greg Ward), just getting chemistry and doing everything that I felt personally that I didn’t do well last year," said Reagor. "Also, working on things that I can increase and do better at."

Entering his second year with a new head coach in Nick Sirianni, who specializes in coaching wide receivers, Reagor has the opportunity to become the player Philadelphia envisioned when picking him.

The Eagles did their part, putting Reagor into a better situation in 2021. He and Hurts have palpable chemistry.

The offensive system will not limit him to just the outside as the Z receiver, but in the slot as the Y receiver. And Philadelphia took the pressure off his shoulders, adding Smith to pair with his skillset.

Now, it’ Reagor’s turn to return the favor to the Eagles. 

“Just watch, Jalen is going to kill it this year,” said a person close to the receiver. “At 191 pounds, he’s in the best shape he’s ever been in the last two years. Fast and quicker than ever. His doubters fueled the hard work he put into his off-season training.”

Reagor is content with his doubters and acknowledges his critics have their reasons for their criticisms, but he’s using it as fuel to become better, and he wants to see if they keep the same energy when his sophomore season comes to a close.

"Honestly, you’re just going to see a whole lot of improvement," he said. "That’s all I can say. Incline."

Conor Myles is a contributor for SI.com’s Eagle Maven and co-host of the Eagles Unfiltered Podcast. Reach Conor at ConorMylesSI@gmail.com or Twitter: @ConorMylesSI

Ed Kracz is the publisher of SI.com’s Eagle Maven and co-host of the Eagles Unfiltered Podcast. Check out the latest Eagles news at www.SI.com/NFL/Eagles and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.