Jordan Reed may have a growing role as the tight end for the Washington Redskins. He will have to battle Jamison Crowder to win that leader board.
Make no mistake about it Jordan Reed will have a new role on the Washington Redskins. The veteran tight end has more to look forward to as both Pierre Garcon (San Francisco 49ers) and DeSean Jackson (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) have new destinations. This will be the first time in three seasons that Reed will perhaps be the leading receiver on the team. He will have to battle Jamison Crowder for those honors, but with less competition, it can be done.
Perhaps I am being a little unfair to Terrelle Pryor, Josh Doctson, Ryan Grant or Brian Quick. However, at this time, Brian Quick is on the roster bubble. ESPN staff writer John Keim didn’t even list him in his top six receivers. As for Doctson, he only played two games last season as a rookie and caught two passes. He also may not even beat out Grant. Doctson needs to grow in his role before Kirk Cousins can count on him. With Pryor, he will take over the DeSean Jackson role. Meaning many deep passes.
Last season, Jackson caught 56 passes for 1,005 yards and four touchdowns in 15 games. It is not unreasonable to see Pryor increase all numbers by 10 percent. Cousins went on to say to Keim about Pryor:
Terrelle is really talented running down the field. I have been very impressed with his down-the-field skills with his speed. Being such a long strider, he can really cover ground when it doesn’t look like he is. I want to throw to him every chance I get on those deeper routes.
Grant and Maurice Harris have been getting good marks from coaches. Harris was on the practice squad before joining the 53-man roster. Last season, he was good on 8-of-11 targets for 66 yards in 129 snaps.
Give Reed all that he can handle
Jordan Reed is already exploding on the scene during minicamp. and missed week 17. He would miss the season finale because he did suffer a shoulder injury on Thanksgiving and was not the same, even though he did not have surgery.
According to CSN Mid-Atlantic’s JP Finlay, Reed looks “dominant” which is good news since he did not play during OTA’s. Finlay would go on to say: “He looked great, smooth and like a serious difference maker for the Redskins. After a TD catch in the end zone (after a previous TD had been called back) Kirk Cousins shouted about Reed, ‘He’s back baby! He’s back!”
To beat a dead horse, it’s always been a battle between Reed and himself on what he can do on the football field. In other words, can the man stay healthy? This will be his fifth year in the NFL and he has not been healthy for a full season. However, he has been dominant each and every season he has been active. He caught 45 passes and three touchdowns his rookie season, then ramped up top 50 catches one season later. He had career bests in receptions (87), yards (952) and touchdowns (11) in 2015. In 2016, Reed was on pace for 88 grabs, 915 yards and eight scores. So it’s easy to see that the tight end can put up top wide receiver numbers.
Looking at a two-man race for yards and touchdowns. You could see Reed outpacing Crowder. In Crowder’s two seasons with Washington, the receiver has averaged 63 receptions for 726 yards and five touchdowns. You can expect Crowder to keep improving his numbers and is a reliable slot receiver unless they move him out to the wing. This is possible since Doctson will probably not be ready and the Redskins will have to put a lot of faith in either Grant, Harris, or rookie Robert Davis. As for Davis, he is a sixth-round draft from Georgia State.
In any case, it’s hard to imagine anyone else but Jordan Reed ending up with the most receptions on the team. He even has a chance to score more touchdowns than anyone on the roster. However, with a low yard per catch average, look for Crowder or possibly Pryor to lead the Redskins in total yards.
Mike Valverde has been a fan of football for the last 40 years and been playing fantasy football for the last 25. He looks forward to giving you the best look at the Washington Redskins as he possibly can. You can follow Mike on Twitter at @RFLRedZone.