Jamison Crowder an excellent 2016 breakout candidate
On Wednesday, Washington Redskins beat reporter Rich Tandler stopped by the Pro Football Focus show hosted by Mike Clay on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio (10 a.m. ET weekdays – Sirius 210 & XM 87). Tandler talked about the Redskins’ backfield, Kirk Cousins, rookie wide receiver Jamison Crowder and more. You can find Tandler on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.
Don’t Count On Matt Jones As A Sneaky DFS Play
Redskins rookie running back Matt Jones (hip) returned to a limited practice on Wednesday, and this has sparked some talk in DFS circles about Jones being a sneaky option for the wildcard slate. Jones was inactive for the past two weeks, but before that, he totaled 50 touches over his last three active games. Despite Jones’ larger role toward the final stretch, Tandler is skeptical that he can make an impact this weekend.
“He was inactive against Dallas,” Tandler said of Jones. “I think he would be inactive even if the game meant something. He wasn’t moving around well in practice last week. I wouldn’t rule him out for Sunday but he probably won’t be a full practice participant today.”
In the Redskins’ past two games without Jones, Alfred Morris has played 67 snaps, Pierre Thomas has played 49 snaps and Chris Thompson has played 27 snaps. Morris rushed for over 100 yards in the season finale. If the game gets out of hand for the Redskins, Tandler believes that only one of Thomas or Thompson will be the beneficiary.
“Still a question if Gruden wants to go Pierre Thomas or Chris Thompson. Thomas has the hot hand but Thompson has been steady and good in pass protection.”
Jones Might Not Hold The Dynasty Value Some Are Assigning To Him
With Morris set to hit unrestricted free agency, many believe that Jones is in line for a lead back role in 2016 in what has all of the sudden become a very efficient Redskins offense. However, Jones has struggled with fumbles and pass blocking so far in his rookie season. Overall, he has graded out as just 65th-“best” out of 68 running backs with 25 percent of their team’s snaps or more. Tandler is also skeptical that Jones will grab the job.
“He seems to do better on pitches and with a head of steam. The straight power running plays this team is trying to adapt to, he doesn’t quite seem to know where to go. Where he’s been really valuable is in the screen game. He’s going to need an offseason and training camp to see what develops.”
Keep An Eye On Jamison Crowder
Crowder finished the regular season ranked 37th among wide receivers in receptions, and since DeSean Jackson returned to the lineup, it has been Crowder who leads the Redskins’ receivers in total snaps. The PFF team feels a breakout coming for the rookie in his sophomore 2016 season, but does Tandler agree?
“Yeah. He’s more of a quickness and angles kind of guy, and the more he plays, the more he’ll pick up on that. He did break the Redskins rookie record for receptions, beating out Art Monk. They really like his work ethic. I don’t think they’re going to bring in anybody to challenge him. I think that’s a good choice for breakout player.”
Is Kirk Cousins The Real Deal?
With Cousins set to hit free agency this offseason, Tandler weighs in on the team’s longterm plans for the quarterback.
“There’s still talk of Cousins being the first one in the building, last one out. Nobody spends more time in the film room, meeting, practice. If it’s a matter of work being able to build on what he’s done in these last 10 weeks, when he’s really come on, I think he’ll make it. But the Redskins have to decide what they’ll have to commit to him with his contract up. I think they’re going to go with him at least for the next couple of years.”
The Redskins entered 2015 with the same inside linebackers as they exited 2014 with — Keenan Robinson and Perry Riley Jr. Both players struggled again in 2015, like they did in 2014, before injuries sent both players to the bench for several weeks. In their place, Will Compton has looked better at inside linebacker than any Redskin since London Fletcher. With Riley close to returning from injury, and Robinson’s role uncertain, Tandler updates us on the current inside linebacker situation.
“Robinson’s decline plays a role — dealing with missed tackles and injuries. Compton is a starter, there’s no question. He’s going to finish out the year. Next to Compton, Mason Foster is the guy right now but Perry Riley could supplant him if he practices.”