Crowder: ‘It was a little weird’ not to see Garcon, Jackson at OTAs
ASHBURN | Redskins wide receiver Jamison Crowder showed up to Redskins Park in April and both DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon were gone. The two wideouts signed elsewhere in free agency and had been the team’s top receivers since Crowder was drafted in 2015.
“It was a little weird, a little different,” Crowder said.
But with Jackson and Garcon in Tampa Bay and San Francisco, Crowder is adjusting to new teammates. And while he’s played primarily in the slot throughout his career, Crowder will also see more time on the outside.
During OTAs, Crowder has spent some of the time practicing on the opposite side of the field of Terrelle Pryor.
“At the end of the day, whether you’re inside or outside, you’re running routes,” Crowder said. “That’s what a job description of a wide receiver is, to run routes and catch the ball. I don’t spend a lot of time on the outside, so I don’t put a lot of thought process into it. I just go out there and play.”
Crowder’s versatility, though, has served the Redskins well. In 2015, the former fourth-round pick had 59 receptions for 604 yards, which set a franchise record for most receiving yards for a rookie. He emerged in the slot and used his speed to blow by defenders, despite being only 5 foot 9.
Last year, Crowder had 67 receptions for 847 yards and caught seven touchdowns instead of two. Of those seven touchdowns, four of them were for more than 25 yards, making Crowder a reliable option for making a play when it was needed. Crowder also returned an 85-yard touchdown as a punt returner.
Redskins coach Jay Gruden said Crowder gets himself open because of his feel for the game, using his quickness
in and out of breaks.
“He plays a lot longer than his size,” Gruden said. “He has got really long arms. He goes up and gets balls. Sometime he plays bigger than a taller receiver because he uses his height [and] he’s got great jumping ability. Some tall guys you see, they misjudge it and they don’t jump. But Jamison, he times them perfect and makes big plays.”
Crowder has settled into a routine by now. He has spent OTAs trying to get back into the rhythm of football and further trying to improve himself.
Gruden will again be the calling plays after former offensive coordinator Sean McVay was hired to coach the Los Angeles Rams, but the move doesn’t matter to Crowder. He said he doesn’t see much of a difference and has never focused on it anyway.
Instead, Crowder has spent his time getting to know Pryor and Brian Quick, who was signed as a free agent in March. Both receivers stand 6 foot 4 and Crowder said their height adds more of a dynamic factor to the offense, with Pryor and Quick being able to go up and grab balls.
Asked if their height will help Crowder, the receiver said he thought so.
“We’ll have to see really once the season gets here,” Crowder said. “But I think with bigger targets out there, it definitely helps me out with the stuff in the middle.”
Washington Redskins receiver Jamison Crowder is expected to spend more time on the outside after years in the slot.