The Green Bay Packers are busy preparing for their playoff battle against the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. While the team is preparing, the Packers front office is looking for players who can help out for next season and seasons to come. The NFL free agency period won’t kick off until March 18th. But teams can currently sign players to futures contracts. Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst inked a very intriguing prospect this past week to a futures deal. He and the Packers are hoping that former CFL wide receiver Reggie Begelton can contribute for the Packers wide receivers group next season.
Reggie Begelton an Interesting Prospect for the Packers Wide Receivers Corps
Recently, one of the better Packers podcasts out there discussed the Packers wide receivers group. One of the hosts proclaimed that the Packers wide receiver group is solid and really isn’t in dire need of help. It was a curious declaration and one that we believe is wrong.
Davante Adams is one of the best wide receivers in the NFL. In the pecking order of the Packers wide receivers group, he sits at the top. There is no arguing that. But behind him, there are some questions.
Behind Adams, it can be argued that Allen Lazard sits right below Adams in the pecking order. Lazard, an undrafted free agent who Gutekunst plucked off the Jacksonville Jaguars practice squad, has been a key contributed in the Packers passing game this season. This season, he hauled in 35 receptions for 477 yards and three touchdowns. At only 24 years of age, Lazard has a lot of good football ahead of him. But after Adams and Lazard, the Packers wide receiver group is lacking and really is unknown.
Questions Behind Adams and Lazard
Entering his second season with the Packers, the Packers were hoping that Marquez Valdes-Scantling would make a jump. However, that hasn’t been the case.
In his rookie campaign, Valdes-Scantling caught 38 passes for 581 yards with two touchdown receptions. But this season, he saw his numbers slip. He ended the regular season with 26 catches for 452 yards with once again two touchdowns. Not only did he disappear during a long stretch of the season, but he appeared to deal with issues in his concentration. It is highly doubtful that the Packers are ready to give up on him. Still, he will need to start to produce or the Packers might lose faith, even with possessing blazing speed.
Valdes-Scantling isn’t the only member of the Packers wide receivers group that battled drops this season. Geronimo Allison dealt with drops throughout the season. With former Randall Cobb departed, the Packers were hoping that Allison could take over in the slot for Cobb. But with his drops issue, it was difficult for quarterback Aaron Rodgers to depend on Allison. He was one of the best blockers out of the Packers wide receivers group, but that isn’t what the Packers are paying him to do.
While Allison has lost some of Rodgers confidence, Jake Kumerow hasn’t. The former Division 3 wide receiver is a favorite of the quarterback. But his ability and talent is limited. He does have a place in the Packers wide receivers group, but at best, he is a number four wide receiver and a key member of their special teams.
Equanimeous St. Brown is a forgotten member of the offense. In 2018, his rookie season, he hauled in 21 passes for 328 yards. Like with Valdes-Scantling, the Packers were hoping he could make a jump in his second season. But instead, he suffered an ankle injury in the preseason and was lost for the season. The Packers are hoping he will be ready to go by training camp next season.
With so many questions, there is an opportunity for Begelton. Unlike a normal rookie, he will be joining the Packers with professional experience.
A Standout in the CFL
From 2013-2016, Reggie Begelton starred for the Lamar University football team. Playing at the Football Championship Subdivision level, he posted 208 receptions for 2,260 yards with 19 touchdown receptions.
When his college career was over, he made his way north of the border to play in the CFL. In his first two years in the CFL, playing for the Calgary Stampeders, he hauled in 47 receptions for 792 yards with two touchdowns. But last season, he made a jump. A jump that caught the attention of Gutekunst and the Packers scouting staff.
Begelton hauled in 102 receptions for 1,444 yards with 10 touchdown receptions. His receptions ranked second in the CFL, his receiving yards ranked third, while his touchdown receptions ranked tied for third. His numbers helped make the Stampeders passing attack one of the best in the CFL.
While the CFL is a different game than the NFL, the numbers Begelton put up can’t be dismissed. His talent can’t be denied and the Packers are hoping it can develop in the NFL.
The Scouting Report
When news of Begelton signing became public, we reached out to somebody who could give us a quick breakdown of his game.
Last Word On CFL contributor Nik Kowalski follows and reports on the CFL. He gave us a quick breakdown of what Begelton could bring to the Packers wide receivers group.
“Reggie’s a tall but lankier receiver who’s primarily been a deep threat that is able to go up and attack the ball over smaller defenders. He’s got solid hands and has a knack of finding open space in both the deep and intermediate zones, but furthermore can tack on yards after the catch with his vision and acceleration with the ball. He’s not a burner, but more a medium to long-range threat who can turn 20-yard catches into 40 yards with the YAC.”
With Valdes-Scantling struggling to become a deep threat for the Packers, Begelton has a chance to contribute for the Packers. While his roster spot isn’t a lock, his experience in the CFL has earned him a shot.
Even with the Packers having their sights set on this year’s Super Bowl, it is nice to see that the Packers scouting staff is working on the Packers future. For Reggie Begelton, he is hoping that he is a part of that future.
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