Special teams for the Washington Redskins entering the 2018 season seems to be one of the main concerns for the organization and the fans.
Pick your poison, right?
Imagine being Jay Gruden and having to pick your poison. Or being that guy who has special teams guys who can’t hold onto the ball or flip the field. What if you are that guy who has to draft replacements in order to get that job done?
Regardless of what people say, when the Redskins took Greg Stroman and Trey Quinn in the 2018 NFL Draft, it wasn’t to become an every day starter, it was to possibly compete for a special teams role in which they may both get that chance.
Only recording four punts for touchdowns in his career, Stroman was primarily known for flipping the field. Stroman had 35 returns for 397 yards and two touchdowns in his Senior campaign for Virginia Tech.
From 2014-2016, Stroman had 92 returns for 711 yards and two touchdowns. Again, people will say he’s not good at returning punts, but let’s face it, he can flip the field, doesn’t fumble, and every now and then can take it to the house.
Kick returning however is a different situation for Stroman. In 23 attempts, Stroman doesn’t have any touchdowns and has tallied just under 500 total yards, averaging around 20.8 yards per kick return.
Usually when a player is selected last in the NFL Draft, they don’t make the teams roster. However, that will be different for Trey Quinn. He finds himself falling onto a roster who needs his speed and help. Quinn can’t just make plays as a receiver, but he can make plays as a special teams returner as well.
Between splitting time at SMU and LSU, Quinn tallied just 20 yards as a punt returner on six attempts. Although he didn’t make a big splash a punt returner between the two programs he did manage to gain recognition with SMU as a kick returner in 2017.
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In 2017 Quinn had 113 yards on five returns for SMU with his longest return being 32 yards. When the final roster cuts are made, it is a very good possibility that Quinn makes the team.
What about Jamison Crowder?
Fumbles by the numbers for Jamison Crowder:
2017: Crowder had six fumbles.
2016: Crowder had two fumbles.
2015: Crowder had four fumbles.
NOTE: Not all the fumbles by Crowder were listed on special teams according to NFL’s database sheet, it just had the entire listing of fumbles from previous years.
Gruden and the Redskins want the most out of Crowder, right? Then they need to use him where his strength lies and that is being a receiver. If Crowder can simply focus on just being a receiver then Washington could see themselves having a 1,000 yard receiver for the first time since 2016 when it was Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson.
Crowder in 2016 had 847 yards on 67 receptions, third best on the team behind Jackson and Garcon. This past year, Crowder had 789 yards on 66 receptions which led the Redskins.
Special team prediction:
If everything goes well in camp for Stroman, he should be the number one punt returner but that probably won’t be his only role. As for Quinn, he will be the main kick returner for the Skins and second on depth with be Stroman.
Both guys can flip the field when returning kicks and if you’re Gruden you have to strongly consider both of them on special teams, or you would think so.
As for Crowder, look for him to be used mainly as a receiver in 2018. He may get the chances to return punts, but with his known history of fumbles his time might be up on special teams.