Daily Focus: Hue Jackson can tailor Browns' offense to fit RG III
Editor’s note: Every day in “Daily Focus,” PFF analysts take the latest NFL news and translate what it really means for each team involved.
Browns HC Hue Jackson can tailor offense to fit RG III’s skill-set: It’s initial depth chart week, and that means your favorite second-overall pick is back in the news. It seemed very unlikely that a team would be willing to deal out $7 million per year for a quarterback and not name him the starter (unless you’re the Eagles), and that’s exactly what we found out from the Browns on Monday. RG III is finally back on the offensive side of the ball, and from the looks of it, has finally nailed the QB slide.
For years now, I’ve said that RG III is far from a lost cause, but it’s going to take an offensive coordinator that will tailor his offense specifically for Griffin to get the former Redskin back on track. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but Jay Gruden was clearly not that guy.
The good news is that Hue Jackson, Cleveland’s new head coach, is.
If Jackson will draw up specific plays to take advantage of the abilities of backup offensive lineman Jake Fisher like he did a season ago, then he’ll certainly get creative with all the tools RG III brings to the table. Obviously any enthusiasm should be tempered—Griffin hasn’t graded positively in a full game since 2013—but if he was flopping in the new offense so far in training camp, he would not have been named the starter this soon.
Jackson could help CLE RBs too
Our Mike Tagliere on why Jackson’s arrival should mean good things for Browns RB Duke Johnson.
Paxton Lynch a long-shot now for Broncos’ starting job? Unless Gary Kubiak is cooking up a dual-quarterback system in Denver (please let this be true), then the Broncos listing of Mark Sanchez and Trevor Siemian as co-starting quarterbacks is nothing more than kicking the can down the road. It’s obvious that Kubiak isn’t willing to give the upper hand to either quarterback this early in camp,
My main takeaway, though, is disappointment that first-round pick Paxton Lynch wasn’t listed as co-co-starting quarterback. We knew coming in that Lynch would have a steep learning curve. The offense Memphis ran a year ago lacked anything close to NFL-level sophistication. But the fact that he’s still behind a seventh-round pick from a year ago who threw more interceptions than touchdowns during his final year of college is a tad concerning. Obviously it’s irresponsible to make any statements about Lynch’s career prospects already, but if Broncos fans were hoping for him to step in and be the savior as a rookie, it seems very unlikely at this point.
Sterling Shepard living up to college grades in camp: Darian Thompson (Boise State) working with the ones at safety next to Landon Collins is far from a surprise. The Giants’ depth chart at the position was almost non-existent when he was selected in the third round. But rookie Sterling Shepard (Oklahoma) already surpassing Victor Cruz as the No. 2 receiver is sure to turn some heads. No, Shepard isn’t 6-foot-3, 215 pounds, with 4.3 speed. No, he didn’t put up eye-popping numbers at Oklahoma. But he did get consistently open from both the slot and split wide, and ended up as the third-best receiver on our big board, receiving a first-round grade.