Not one of the wide receivers for the Washington Redskins this season had an eye-popping year, at least statistically speaking.
Last year, DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon each had over 1,000 yards. The Redskins let both walk in free agency, with Garcon signing with the San Francisco 49ers and Jackson signing with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
In 2017, the Redskins‘ leading wideouts in yards were Jamison Crowder and Ryan Grant, though neither broke the 1,000-yard mark.
Still, Redskins coach Jay Gruden said Tuesday the team would “try and do everything” to resign Grant. Grant, who had 573 yards and four touchdowns, will be a free agent in March.
“I think [Grant], given the opportunities he got, he took advantage of them and played extremely well,” Gruden said. ‘H’s tough, physical and very durable and dependable.”
Gruden has always defended Grant, drawing criticism earlier in the season for playing him over prospect Josh Doctson. Even former Redskins general manager Scot McCloughan, at one point on Twitter, jokingly referred to Grant as “Ryan Gruden.”
But Grant had his best year as a pro, primarily playing the ‘Z’ position in the Redskins‘ offense. He was targeted 65 times and caught a career-high 45 passes. His 69.2 catch percentage was also a personal best.
One of the Redskins‘ need this offseason will be to find a receiver to line up opposite of Doctson. Generally speaking, Gruden said he wants a wideout who can play in multiple spots, knows the scheme and can be physical in the run game and be fast.
Gruden acknowledged that’s easier said than done.
“A lot of receivers have either the speed but not the toughness or maybe the toughness but not the speed, but we have to find that rare combination that fits in his offense, both personality-wise and competitive-wise,” Gruden said.
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