WASHINGTON — The Redskins’ receiving corps, led by DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garcon, Jamison Crowder, tight end Jordan Reed and bolstered by top draft pick Josh Doctson, is garnering tremendous hype around NFL circles coming into 2016.
Much of this was brought on by Crowder, who recently stated his belief that his position group is “the best in the league.” Redskins personnel executive Doug Williams agreed, saying they could prove better than “The Posse” — Art Monk, Gary Clark and Ricky Sanders — one of the most hallowed receiving trios in NFL history which helped lead the Redskins to two Super Bowl wins (XXII, XXVI).
NFL.com then ranked Washington’s receiver group the second best in the league, with writer Gregg Rosenthal calling them “the deepest group.”
A typically optimistic Joe Theisman is even rosier than usual about the position group, calling receiver the “strongest position on the team.”
“I tend to agree with Doug,” Theismann told Chad Dukes on 106.7 The Fan. “And there’s always the little asterisk that goes with it, the what ifs — if this group can stay healthy, if Kirk can stay healthy — then it has a chance to rival what The Posse was all about.”
“Even my little Smurfs, the years in ’82 and 83 when we had The Smurfs out there,” he said. “I mean [Alvin Garrett] and [Virgil Seay], nobody could guard them, and of course [Art Monk] was the Hall of Famer he is.
“Yeah, I think it’s great to draw a comparison that way. I think those guys will be motivated by it, it will be something that they can shoot for. You don’t want to shy away from comparisons, you just want to hold yourself to a high standard and this gives them a chance to do that.”
Theismann also made a bold proclamation of his own.
“The wild card is certainly without question Jordan Reed. Jordan Reed is the best tight end in football,” he said. “The position doesn’t require him to block, although it’s an area in talking to him he wants to work on and get better at, but we certainly have loaded the tight end position with guys who can block. He’s the best route runner at the tight end position and probably could be one of the best route runners in all of football.”
Reed caught 87 passes for 952 yards and 11 touchdowns in his breakout 2015 season, the third of his career, ranking him fifth in receiving yards among NFL tight ends behind Rob Gronkowski (1,176), Greg Olsen (1,104), Delanie Walker (1,088) and Gary Barnidge (1,043); second in receptions behind Walker (94); and tied with Gronkowski for second in touchdowns, behind Tyler Eifert (13).
The five-year, $46.75 million extension Reed signed this offseason makes him the third highest paid player at his position in total contract value and in average annual value ($9.35 million), according to figures from OverTheCap.com. That extension could be favorable to the Redskins should Reed continue to excel and indeed prove Mr. Theismann correct.
“He makes this wide receiving corps so much more special, because he’s difficult to double inside, he’s a mismatch for everybody, and if you decide you want to double him, then you’ve got to worry about [Jackson] going down the field,” Theismann said.