The Washington Redskins reportedly won’t stop their top receivers from last year, Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson, from testing free agency this year.
According to John Keim of ESPN, Washington hasn’t completely given up on trying to re-sign both receivers, but it also hasn’t reached out to either to this point in the proceedings.
“The Redskins also haven’t spoken to either receiver and clearly seem content in letting them test the market,” Keim writes. “Therefore, the possibility of each leaving remains strong.”
This is somewhat surprising, though Keim notes it’s not exactly breaking news. He wrote hat the team will likely not do anything until the 2017 NFL Scouting Combine, when the receivers’ values might be more clearly defined.
Garcon and Jackson combined to haul in 135 of the 407 total receptions logged by Washington players last year. That’s a solid third of the team’s total production, and they turned those receptions into 2,046 yards and seven touchdowns.
Perhaps the Redskins feel comfortable with the progress of Jamison Crowder — he hauled in 67 catches for 847 yards and seven touchdowns — and believe second-year receiver Josh Doctson will be healthy enough to take on a prominent role.
Still, losing Garcon and/or Jackson could significantly impact the team’s offense.
Washington has plenty of cap space right now, so it’s possible they won’t lose either player in the long run. However, given the need around the league for productive receivers, it’s just as likely they’ll both be gone.
Garcon has been linked to the San Francisco 49ers and Arizona Cardinals (more on that here).
Jameis Winston’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers have been mentioned as a hot destination for DeSean Jackson, who could also be excited about a reunion with the Philadelphia Eagles.
This is going to be an interesting storyline to follow during the upcoming free agency period, which kicks off in just a couple of weeks.