ASHBURN — Maybe there is another cornerback-wide receiver matchup to watch on Sunday when the Giants and Redskins play.
Wide receiver DeSean Jackson, informed of quotes by New York defensive back Janoris Jenkins that essentially called him a one-dimensional speed threat, fired back on Thursday.
“Who? Who’s that?” Jackson said. “I don’t entertain that stuff. Hopefully he’s still talking that stuff when the game time comes, though. Next question.”
Jackson’s deadpan broadened into a smile. This isn’t exactly Josh Norman and Odell Beckham, Jr. here. Thanks to a hamstring injury Jackson didn’t even play in Week 2 last year when Jenkins and the St. Louis Rams were in Washington for a game.
Jackson is hoping the same fate won’t befall him this week when the Redskins play at MetLife Stadium. He injured his left knee and has an ankle injury, too. That kept him out of practice on Wednesday and Jackson participated in a limited role on Thursday. The Redskins plan to let him run full speed on Friday and see how he reacts.
“[Jackson] needed a day to recover a little bit,” Washington coach Jay Gruden said. “He was sore, but he had a better day today. I didn’t see him running full blazing speed, but he’s running, which is a good sign. And with a sprinter like that, he needs to be full go.”
Jackson has been a force early this season, He has nine receptions on 16 targets for 142 yards. He’s averaging 15.8 yards per catch with three of those over 25 yards. It hasn’t translated into a win yet, however. And that’s frustrated Jackson. But he hasn’t lost confidence yet.
“Started off shaky, but we’ve got another opportunity to go to the Meadowlands up there, New York, Apple city, Apple state, whatever you want to call it, and shock everybody,” Jackson said. “In this locker room we feel comfortable and confident we can pull it out, but it’s going to come down to one or two plays here and there, and the first two games we weren’t able to take advantage of those one or two plays.”
Jenkins, of course, is a good player in his own right. He parlayed his stint with the Rams into a big contract in New York. Last week against the Saints he returned a blocked field goal for a touchdown and was named NFC special teams player of the week. A few Redskins players said Jenkins had little impact in last year’s win over the Rams, though. They weren’t impressed. Just some more fuel to the fire for a game that doesn’t really need any. Washington – at 0-2 – has to come away with a win if it harbors any hope of defending its NFC East title. The undefeated Giants (2-0) have a chance to put their rivals in a bad, bad place.
“This is our division we won last year and we want to redeem that. Championship’s not won right now,” Jackson said. “You can definitely help yourself out by winning as many games as you can and preparing yourself for the long haul of the season. Two weeks. We dug ourselves a hole, but it’s not that deep. As long as we take care of this one, that’s all that matters.”
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