Though it’s unwise to make sweeping inferences from a few offseason workouts, there were signs, as the Redskins wrapped up last week’s minicamp, that Pierre Garcon will be featured more prominently in the 2015 game plan as Coach Jay Gruden attempts to rally from his 4-12 debut as a rookie NFL head coach.
Gruden said more than once last season that he wanted to get Garcon more involved in the passing game. But it never really happened, whether as a result of free agent DeSean Jackson’s addition to the receiving corps, the revolving door at quarterback or the failure of Robert Griffin III to make timely, decisive reads.
When the Redskins got back to work this offseason, Garcon frequently lined up split out wide to the right of Griffin rather than in his customary spot to the quarterback’s left. According to wide receivers coach Ike Hilliard, it represented an attempt to diversify the offense and get players comfortable with other roles.
And both Hilliard and Gruden gushed about the work Garcon was putting in. Heading into his eighth NFL season, Garcon, who’ll turn 29 in August, didn’t miss a session of optional workouts or the mandatory minicamp.
After a #11 finish in PPR formats in 2013, Garcon was the #47 receiver last season. His targets dropped from 182 to 105, thanks to the addition of DeSean Jackson and Andre Roberts in free agency. The team is expected to run the ball a bit more this season, so we're not expecting much of a bounce-back season for Garcon.
Thursday, June 4, 2015, 1:02pm
Redskins WR Pierre Garcon appears to have switched wide receiver positions and spent the bulk of the day playing the ‘Z’ rather than the ‘X.’ He used to line up on the left, and now is split out to the right. Coaches plan to make a greater point of getting Garcon the ball, and this is part of the plan. DeSean Jackson lined up at the ‘X’ today.
After a #11 finish in PPR formats in 2013, Garcon was the #47 receiver last season. His targets dropped from 182 to 105, thanks to the addition of DeSean Jackson and Andre Roberts in free agency. The team is expected to run the ball a bit more this season, so we're not expecting a big bounce-back season for Garcon. If the team follows through with its plan to get him the ball more often, he could post WR3 numbers in PPR formats.
Redskins HC Jay Gruden discussed the drop in receptions for WR Pierre Garcon...
"I think we can get his numbers back up a little bit," Gruden said. "We missed him. With three quarterbacks playing, there was never any ideal situation, and that hurt all the receivers. Moving forward we get some stability at the quarterback position, you’ll see all the numbers go up for all the receivers hopefully. A lot of people would rather just hand it off, but I think, we need to spread it out and be diverse in what we do and get these guys these touches. These guys work extremely hard. For us not to give them opportunities to make plays down the field is silly."
Ideally, Garcon will be in the 70-80 catch range. If the Redskins are successful this season, it will be their run game that powers them. They are not a team that should drop back more than 30 times a game. However, they do have two good starting receivers and a third who is capable of 40 receptions, plus Reed who deserves his share of targets, too.
After a #11 finish in PPR formats in 2013, Garcon was the #47 receiver last season. His targets dropped from 182 to 105, thanks to the addition of DeSean Jackson and Andre Roberts in free agency. The team is expected to run the ball a bit more this season, so we're not expecting a bounce-back season for Garcon.
Friday, December 12, 2014, 6:26pm
Redskins WR DeSean Jackson (shin, questionable) took limited practice reps all week and is questionable for Week 15. Jackson looks like a true game-time decision. His return would put a big dent in the the appeal of Pierre Garcon, who had a nice Week 14. Washington plays early on Sunday.
Thursday, December 11, 2014, 6:32pm
Redskins WR DeSean Jackson (shin) took limited practice reps again Thursday. Consider him questionable for now. His return would put a big dent in the the upside of Pierre Garcon, who had a nice Week 14. Washington plays early on Sunday.
Wednesday, December 10, 2014, 6:25pm
Redskins WR DeSean Jackson (shin) took limited practice reps Wednesday. Jackson’s return early in the week is a good sign, though he’s still not able to run at full speed per HC Jay Gruden. Consider him questionable for now. His return would put a big dent in the the upside of Pierre Garcon, who had a nice Week 14.
Friday, December 5, 2014, 6:38pm
Redskins WR DeSean Jackson (shin, questionable) missed practice all week and is questionable for Week 14. The Redskins are out of the playoff race, so there’s no need to rush Jackson back other than to try to win a few games to save face. Pierre Garcon, Andre Roberts and Jordan Reed would all get a bump if D-Jax can’t play. Washington plays in the early round of games on Sunday.
Thursday, December 4, 2014, 5:59pm
Redskins WR DeSean Jackson (shin) missed practice again Thursday. Jackson was reportedly “still limping” on the sideline at practice on Wednesday, which indicates that he’s not a good bet to be able to play through the injury. The Redskins are out of the playoff race, so there’s no need to rush Jackson back other than to try to win a few games to save face. Pierre Garcon, Andre Roberts and Jordan Reed would all get a bump if D-Jax can’t play. Washington plays in the early round of games on Sunday.
Wednesday, December 3, 2014, 6:30pm
Redskins WR DeSean Jackson (shin) did not practice Wednesday. Jackson was reportedly “still limping” on the sideline at practice, which indicates that he’s not a good bet to be able to play through the injury. The Redskins are out of the playoff race, so there’s no need to rush Jackson back other than to try to win a few games to save face. Pierre Garcon, Andre Roberts and Jordan Reed would all get a bump if D-Jax can’t play. Washington plays in the early round of games on Sunday.
Jackson was streaking down the left sideline past Colts cornerback Josh Gordy when he fell to the turf and immediately grabbed his right leg. Though Gordy was flagged for pass interference on the play, it did not appear as though Gordy was responsible for Jackson’s injury.
After a brief examination on the sideline, Jackson was taken by a cart to the locker room. Jackson actually missed a few plays earlier in the game because of the injury but he never returned after being carted off. Despite being in catchup-up mode, WRs like Pierre Garcon and Andre Roberts weren't really factors. TE Jordan Reed ended up hauling in nine catches for 123 and RB Roy Helu finished with a 4-61-1 receiving ilne.
Washington is planning to start Colt McCoy over Robert Griffin III on Sunday at Indianapolis, per a team source.
While Griffin is not a part of Washington's plan for Sunday's game, he still appears to be a significant part of the Redskins' long-term plan, per another source.
Yet right now, Washington is hitting the reset button, though it might not last long, a source cautioned.
McCoy has played a game and a half of football this season, relieving Kirk Cousins in the second half of Week 7 against the Titans. In that game he threw for 128 yards, which included a 70-yard touchdown to Pierre Garcon. He started the following week in Dallas, throwing for 299 yards and an interception, while also rushing for 16 yards and a touchdown. More importantly, the Redskins beat the Cowboys, 20-17. The thing that jumps out about McCoy is his YPA, which is 10.2 on 42 attempts. This is a rather small sample size, but it is an encouraging sign for McCoy backers. The move may be good for DeSean Jackson, who had six catches for 136 yards in McCoy's start against Dallas. Jackson had a nice Week 8 game with Griffin against the Vikings, but only caught six passes for 74 yards combined in the last two games. McCoy doesn't have a bad matchup the rest of the way.
Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 2:09pm
HC Jay Gruden's calling a vanilla offense because Griffin can’t handle a more complicated scheme right now. He has to call quick-hitters in an attempt to get the ball out of the quarterback’s hands, because he’s holding on to it too long as he struggles to play with rhythm and anticipation.
Gruden couldn’t afford to have Griffin stand in the pocket and wait for things to unfold downfield on Sunday because of the fierce 49ers defense. He got sacked six times while waiting for intermediate routes to unfold. Gruden tried to spice things up by calling for the Pierre Garcon end-around/pass downfield. He also called for Griffin to take a shot downfield, but he threw into double coverage and didn’t even see Pierre Garcon wide open in single coverage, also downfield.
Jones answered many frustrating questions from fans about RGIII. Another interesting answer was that Gruden is likely very frustrated Griffin hasn't picked up more of the offense by now, which leads Gruden to say things like: they intend to start Griffin this week. Jones went on to say Gruden was hired to fix RGIII but so far that hasn't happened and while he likely feels he needs to give RGIII more time, watching this offense is a struggle. It all adds up to meaning just about everyone on the Redskins offense is a risky fantasy play, especially as we head into the fantasy playoff season.
Tuesday, November 11, 2014, 10:46am
Hankerson will play his first game this season on Sunday, after missing the first nine thanks to ACL surgery last December. Now that he’s back, the Redskins have seven receivers (unless they opt to release one of them to make room for nose tackle Barry Cofield’s return this week).
And that means someone will get less playing time. Clearly it won’t be any of the top three wideouts -- DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garcon and Andre Roberts. It's hard to imagine much changing with how they've been used and how many targets they receive. If Hankerson is comfortable in the offense, he provides the Redskins a receiver who can run routes from various positions and, at 6-foot-2, he's also their tallest. His blocking isn’t bad, either.
It could be -- and should be, if he’s right -- that Hankerson plays ahead of Santana Moss and even Ryan Grant. It’s hard to see how Aldrick Robinson would be active with Hankerson around if he couldn’t be without him on the roster.
Tuesday, November 4, 2014, 7:26pm
The 6-foot-2 Hankerson provides the receiving corps with needed size and a player who can help at multiple spots. They've used him inside and outside in the past and he improved as a blocker, which helped the run game. He's coming off a torn ACL and subsequent surgery and is in the last year of his contract. Hankerson, a 2011 third-round choice, has 81 receptions in his first three years combined, with six touchdowns. He caught 30 passes in 10 games before getting hurt last season.
With Hankerson, the Redskins have seven receivers. Pierre Garcon, DeSean Jackson and Andre Roberts have combined for 103 catches and are firmly entrenched. They also have rookie Ryan Grant, who has five catches; Aldrick Robinson, who has one catch, and Santana Moss, who has none. Though Robinson has been inactive recently, they want to keep him around, in part because of his speed.
Tuesday, October 28, 2014, 8:49pm
Washington’s receivers weren’t too happy at halftime. It doesn’t take a lot of digging to realize why. The starting three combined for seven targets in the first two quarters of Monday night’s win at Dallas. Meanwhile, the offense had produced three points.
Nobody felt it more than Pierre Garcon, who had just one ball thrown his way in the first half (resulting in a 2-yard loss). In fact, Garcon has only had 24 passes thrown his way the past five games combined. This after being targeted a combined 31 times in the first three games.
“In the first half, everybody was a little frustrated,” Redskins coach Jay Gruden said. “I know the receivers were a little frustrated. I know Pierre was frustrated because there were so many things we felt we were leaving on the table. I ... put out some fires.”
Garcon averaged around 12 targets a game last year so it's easy to see why he's frustrated. The QB play for Washington has been inconsistent and Colt McCoy was the third QB to start this season. Garcon owners may want to try and stay patient as the return of QB Robert Griffin III could help Garcon's production in the second half of the season.
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