During his three-year career, RGIII has had one superlative season and been a bust in the other two. In fact, his trajectory is headed down in a major way courtesy of his atrocious campaign of a year ago when he was the team’s quarterback for the majority of the snaps in just seven games, earning a demotion from head coach Jay Gruden. Did we mention he was benched for journeyman Colt McCoy? A McCoy injury resulted in Griffin being reinserted into the starting line-up but he failed to show much improvement over the season’s final three games. Injuries have robbed RGIII of his dynamic playmaking ability rushing the football and he has major work to do when it comes to reading defenses and making sound decisions in the pocket. And reading between the lines, it does not appear that Gruden is sold on his signal caller, making another mid-season benching a definite possibility. Add it all up and RGIII is a slot pull for 2015 but after two shoddy seasons, at least you can snag him for a fraction of his value from previous years.
The line on Morris entering the 2014 season was that he would see a decline in his usage due to head coach Jay Gruden’s preference for using a committee approach at the running back position. However, Morris only saw his touches decrease by three to 282 allowing him to once again top 1,200 total yards while making his way to the end zone eight times. He also saw his role as a pass catcher out of the backfield increase, reaching career highs with 17 receptions for 155 yards. Entering the final year of his rookie contract, Morris will once again lead the Redskins rushing attack although the team protected itself against Morris not re-signing by selecting Matt Jones in the 3rd round of this year’s draft. His presence clouds Morris’ fantasy value as does uncertainty regarding how effective the team’s offense will be. With the Washington offense operating at its peak in 2011, Morris hit pay dirt 13 times but he has just 15 touchdowns over the past two years as the team has struggled in that area. Since we expect Morris to approach 280 touches once again this season and for the offense to rank middle of the pack, he projects as a solid, high end RB2 with decent upside.
With Alfred Morris entering the final year of his rookie contract, the Redskins used a 3rd round pick in this year’s draft to add depth to the position, acquiring Florida’s Matt Jones. At 6’2″ and 231 pounds, Jones has the size required to handle heavy touches as a starter but his measurables and collegiate production don’t indicate that he has major upside as a pro. However, that was the same narrative that followed Morris to the pros when he left Florida Atlantic in 2012. Look for Jones to unseat Silas Redd and Chris Thompson to earn the backup and pass catching role behind Morris this season. While Jones doesn’t rate as a high caliber handcuff due to Morris’ ability to handle a heavy workload, he is a mid-tier dynasty prospect based on Morris’ contract situation.
There are certain players that you end up holding your nose as you add them to your fantasy roster and Djax fits squarely into that group. By season’s end, he should net out at about 60 receptions for 1,000 yards and 7-8 touchdowns. However, it’s the inconsistency that always frustrates his owners and last season was no different as he accumulated 130.1 of his 152.9 (or 85%) fantasy points in eight of his 15 games. In the other seven games, he averaged 3.3 PPG. If you can live with the inconsistency, consider Djax as a mid-tier WR2.
As the top dog in the Redskins passing attack in 2013, Garcon posted a career year with 113 receptions for 1,346 yards and five touchdowns. However, the addition of DeSean Jackson prior to the 2014 season put a huge dent in his production as he played second fiddle to Djax, watching his target count plummet from 184 to just 105 as he caught 68 passes for 752 yards and three touchdowns. In 2015, the Redskins have vowed to give him a larger role in the team’s passing attack but we’re not buying that will result in a return to his glory days. Barring a Djax injury, Garcon’s upside is likely 1,000 yards and 5-6 touchdowns. Thought of as a big play machine, he has topped six touchdowns just twice during his seven year career. He rates as a somewhat intriguing WR4.
Signed to a lucrative four year, $16-million contract after producing four reasonably solid years in Arizona, Roberts was something of a disappointment during his first year in Washington. Playing almost exclusively out of the slot, Roberts caught just 36 of his 73 targets for 453 yards and a pair of touchdowns, easily his worst production since his rookie season in 2010. His usage went down as the season progressed with Roberts seeing just 22 targets over the final seven games of the season. He also offered little as a punt and kick returner. In addition, new general manager Scott McCloughan used a 4th round pick on Jamison Crowder, a diminutive slot receiver who doubles as a punt returner. With a guaranteed salary of $2.75-million, Roberts’ roster spot is all but guaranteed. Unfortunately for him, his playing time isn’t.
Drafted in the 4th round of this year’s rookie draft, Crowder will battle fellow wide receiver Andre Roberts for playing time as a slot receiver and kick returner. Since new general manager Scot McCloughan brought in Crowder and inherited Roberts, we like Crowder’s chance of winning that battle. However, with uncertainties at quarterback and a pair of solid veterans in DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon in starting roles, Crowder is waiver wire material in redraft leagues. He rates as a lower tier prospect in dynasty formats.
The Redskins used a 5th round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft to acquire Grant. Stuck behind a slew of veteran pass catchers, Grant’s selection was questionable to begin with and, not surprisingly, he failed to produce as a rookie, catching just seven of his 15 targets for 68 yards. Given his lack of size (6’0″ and 199 pounds) and speed (4.6 40 yard time), we don’t view Grant as much of a prospect. Not helping matters is that the team’s new management regime won’t hesitate in replacing Grant with players they choose to bring in.
There was a time when Reed rated as a potential top five fantasy tight end. However, after just two seasons in the league, most pundits have moved that notion to the rearview mirror as a result of his inability to stay healthy with Reed missing 12 of a possible 32 games. Not helping matters is that Reed failed to get in sync with Robert Griffin III last season, catching 18 of 23 targets for 131 yards in the six games they started together. When Colt McCoy played most of the games, Reed caught 24 of his 31 targets for 242 yards in four games. While Reed still possesses more than enough talent to emerge as a difference maker at tight end, his injury history and lack of chemistry with expected starter RGIII moves him down to upper tier TE2 status. Not helping matters is that his lack of size (6’3″ and 245 pounds) make him a less than ideal red zone threat, as evidenced by his inability to score in 2014.