Trey Quinn could be in for a big year as the starting slot receiver and No. 1 punt returner. He’s got big cleats to fill as he attempts to replace free agent departure Jamison Crowder, but Quinn, the final selection of the 2018 draft, elicited high praise from both head coach Jay Gruden and wide receivers coach Ike Hilliard for a strong spring performance.
Trey Quinn suffered a high-ankle sprain last September and spent the majority of his rookie season on IR. He's looking like the guy to man the slot in Washington this season and has already received high praise from coach Jay Gruden, as he stated "I'm ready to watch Trey Quinn jump in that slot role and dominate the position. I'm excited for him."
Quinn is someone to watch in training camp and could be a valuable late-round flier, especially in PPR formats.
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.
After the season, BuffaloBills.com writer Chris Brown said on WGR 550 the coaching staff was unable to convince Steve Johnson to buy into the team concept.
"I don't know that anybody felt on the staff thought that they could effectively get in his head, relate to him, know what he was feeling, thinking all the time" Brown said of Johnson on Jan. 3, after the team fired receivers coach Ike Hilliard. "I think it's because Stevie's just a different breed of cat.
"I don't think it's any reflection on this coaching staff. I think this coaching staff did a really good job of kind of aligning themselves with the players, where they felt they were all in this thing together and they were all allies. ...
"But I think Stevie's a hard guy to reach, and when you're trying to build a thing where it's all for one and one for all, and it's hard to reel a guy into that, it makes you wonder just where they feel they're going with him."
The article discusses how HC Doug Marrone has since reached out to Johnson to clear the air. This is a situation to keep an eye on this offseason. Johnson was the #56 WR in 2013.
A month into his second season with the Dallas Cowboys, WR Dez Bryant has become more than a well-intentioned kid who keeps getting into trouble. He's becoming more of a professional.
He understands what's required from him and what the consequences are if he doesn't live up to those requirements. He's showing up on time for meetings and practices. He knows his playbook and runs crisp routes.
Management had enough faith to clear a starting job for him by releasing Roy Williams. They also took the calculated risk of bringing in WR coach Jimmy Robinson as Bryant's new mentor. The risk was that Bryant had become close with his position coach, Ray Sherman. The calculation was that coach Jason Garrett was sure Robinson was up to the challenge.
It helps that Robinson has an impressive list of receivers who have thrived under his tutelage: Marvin Harrison, Andre Rison, Amani Toomer, Ike Hilliard, Joe Horn and the guys from Green Bay who won the Super Bowl last year, with Robinson as part of that staff.
Indeed, Robinson and Bryant have hit it off well. It's evident in the way Bryant tries to absorb every piece of advice Robinson shares with him on the practice field.