Pierre Garcon Gives Washington Redskins Uncommon Swagger
Washington Redskins’ wide receiver Pierre Garcon (above, left) is no doubt looking to improve on his 2012 season. He was brought to Washington before the start of last season to become the main target of quarterback Robert Griffin III. Although Garcon suffered through an injury marred season due to an injured right foot, he still managed to record 44 receptions for 633 yards and four touchdowns.
Garcon has set the bar extremely high for his offensive teammates in 2013. Recently, he opined that the 2013 Redskins’ offense could become one of the best ever. While Washington has proven playmakers in Garcon, Griffin III, and running back Alfred Morris, saying that the 2013 Washington Redskins’ offense could become one of the best ever is a pretty strong statement. It’s the kind of statement not usually expected from a Redskins’ franchise with a recent history of mediocre football.
Garcon’s assessment also puts tremendous pressure on Griffin III and his wide receivers. The 2007 New England Patriots set an NFL record with 589 points during that season’s 16 game schedule. Patriots’ quarterback Tom Brady threw an NFL record 50 touchdown passes in 2007 using an offense that focused on both an intermediate and deep passing game. Washington’s offense is predicated on a strong running game, as well as an efficient intermediate passing game. The deep passing attack was not a main staple for Washington in 2012, which is necessary to make their offense even more potent than it currently is.
However, Garcon’s assessment of his offensive unit is good for the Redskins. It gives them the confidence necessary for success in the NFL. Washington averaged over 27 points per game in 2012, so there’s a basis for optimism there. Like Garcon, tight end Fred Davis’ 2012 season was limited by injury. Davis suffered a torn Achilles that ended his season prematurely. Davis’ athleticism and efficient pass catching ability illustrates his big play potential at the tight end position. Rookie tight end Jordan Reed has the athleticism necessary to complement Davis when the Redskins decide to use two tight ends. Reed’s addition gives Washington another potentially efficient weapon on offense.
Washington offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan has to become more aggressive in his approach to make Garcon’s proclamation prophetic. Shanahan employed the zone read offense, which did not afford Griffin III the opportunity to throw the deep ball often. Garcon specialized in catching the deep ball while he and quarterback Peyton Manning were members of the Indianapolis Colts. Redskins’ wide receivers Santana Moss, Aldrick Robinson and Leonard Hankerson each have the potential to provide efficiency catching deep passes. Each of them had at least two touchdown receptions covering at least 50 yards, supporting the aforementioned theory.
Asking the Redskins’ offense to match or surpass the potency of the 2007 Patriots in an effort to become one of the NFL’s greatest offenses is asking a lot. Washington would have to average close to 37 points per game to achieve New England’s record season. Nevertheless, NFL fans will have fun watching the Redskins try. That would say a lot, considering the franchise’s recent history of irrelevance.