The Redskins’ biggest play against the Saints came on a very short pass. In the second quarter, Kirk Cousins dumped a screen pass to running back Matt Jones, who picked up blocks from his linemen and receivers, and rolled 78 yards for a touchdown that gave the Redskins a lead they never relinquished.
It was the longest pass play to a Redskins running back since Larry Brown went 89 yards with a screen pass in a game against the Jets in 1972. It seems to Redskins fans that it has been that long since a screen pass worked for the team. That may be an exaggeration but the play that is a staple of Football 101 rarely seems to work for the Redskins.
Jay Gruden would like to see that change.
“They’re important, especially if you’re playing some of these pass rush teams that like to get up the field and rush,” he said. “It slows them down a little bit. We have some linemen that are very athletic and can get out in space. Last week was really our first time we had a lot of success with those screen passes and I expect us to have more as the season goes on.”
The story pointed out it's not as easy as it might look to execute a screen pass, and last week the Saints were a much friendlier matchup compared to what the Panthers will be this week. But, it sounds like the Skins would like to make it part of their offense. They certainly have the weapons as Jones proved last week. The team also has Chris Thompson as their third RB. Jones' fantasy value could really get a boost if he becomes more involved in the passing game.