[Editor’s Note: The information in this post is not associated with the thinking or decision-making of team executives. The information pertains to player relationships, and is not indicative of team interest.]
In 2011, the Redskins averaged 336.7 passing yards per game, good for 16th in the NFL. Of the 12 playoff teams this past season, half of them were in the Top-10, suggesting that playoff-hopeful teams need top-aerial attacks.
Obviously, a key component to that is finding or developing a top receiving threat. No Redskins receivers amassed 1,000 yards last year, and the team’s top two wide receivers (Santana Moss and Jabar Gaffney) are both north of 30.
But there is reason to believe that the Redskins can improve in 2012. If the Redskins choose to look to free agency, they have a couple potential free agents that have a personal connection to current Redskins players.
Vincent Jackson, San Diego Chargers: Jackson is a gifted athlete, a rare combination of size (6-5, 230 pounds) and speed (4.46 40-time in the 2005 Combine). He has been a major factor in the Charger’s offensive success in recent years, and will upgrade the offense by drawing constant double and triple-teams.
His connection: “VJax” was poorly recruited out of high school, and rewarded Northern Colorado for their due diligence. And during his time in Greeley, Colo., he was college roommates and good friends with current Redskins safety Reed Doughty, who was excited to see Jackson not get franchise tagged:
Marques Colston, New Orleans Saints: Colston is another absurd athlete from an obscure school, bundling a big body (6-4, 225 pounds) with great wheels (4.50 40-time in the 2005 Combine). Five of his six seasons have ended in 1,000-yard campaigns, and he is one of Brees’s favorite targets in the Bayou.
His connection: Colston is one of the few remaining alums from the deceased D-1AA Hofstra University football team. The school cut the program following the 2009 season, with only six alums left in the league, including Colston and current Redskins defensive end Stephen Bowen. The two both graduated in 2006, and have remained good friends ever since.
Former Hofstra player-turned-coach Raheem Morris also joined the Redskins coaching staff this offseason, making a reunion-scenario all the more appealing.
Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis Colts: Wayne has had a tremendous career in Indianapolis, and could be looking for a fresh situation in his first test of free agency. His career résumé boasts nearly 900 receptions and 12,000 yards, as he looks to solidify his bid for Canton.
His connection: A dozen years ago, Wayne roamed the turf at the Orange Bowl, teamed with Redskins receiver and good friend Santana Moss. Together, the pair set school records for receiving yards, and his guidance helped to set up the 2001 National Championship victory for the ‘Canes.
And the Miami receiver that came along to break all of Wayne’s records was none other than Redskins rookie Leonard Hankerson.
Let me reiterate, that none of this is to suggest that the Redskins are interested in the aforementioned players, or that the players are interested in joining the Redskins. Free agency is still one week away, and any or all of these players could be locked up before 4 p.m. on Tuesday, March 13.
It’s just nice to know that players of this caliber have friends in the Nation’s Capital.