Robert Griffin III And Desean Jackson In Sync At OTAPosted on June 11, 2014 by Harvey Valentine
After missing last week's workouts with a hamstring issue, Washington Redskins wide receiver DeSean Jackson returned for the final sessions of OTAs, and was a favorite target of quarterback Robert Griffin III during the 11-on-11 portions of the workout June 11.
The pair connected on the first play, a long pass down the right sideline as Jackson got behind coverage. The pair hit on numerous passes of short, medium and long distance during the workout.
"It's good to have him back out here at practice with us, doing what he can," Griffin said. "He's excited about it. He wants to have the opportunity to go out and help his team make plays.
"But it's all predicated on what the defense gives us. And today just happened to be a day where they were giving us a lot of looks to [Jackson], and of course we're going to try and get the ball into his hands, Pierre [Garcon's] hands, some of the other guys, early and often."
Jackson, who did not speak to the media following the workout, tweaked his left hamstring during an incomplete pass play May 29. Head coach Jay Gruden said Jackson's not quite 100 percent.
"He feels good running straight," Gruden said. "It's just sometimes coming out of cuts a little bit he's still a little bit tentative and we're just watching him. But he looked good, obviously. We hoped that he could run this week. That's what our hopes were. That's why we kept him out last week.
"It was a minor deal, we thought and he thought. Once he got clearance from [head athletic trainer] Larry [Hess] and he felt good about it, he was out there running. And it's good to see him out there push it a little bit for the team and everybody else. But he did a good job today."
With Gruden's brother, Jon, watching from the sidelines, the Redskins spent some time running the no-huddle offense.
"Our coaches have said we're going huddle up and try to play smash-mouth football and we're going to go no-huddle and still play smash-mouth football, so we're doing a lot," Griffin said. "We did some no-huddle today, working that stuff in and, like I said, we'll be very multiple and we'll figure out what we do best."
Gruden said working on the no-huddle is designed to help the Redskins on both sides of the ball.
"Offensively, it's a good way to dictate tempo and keep the defenses from substituting and keep them out of their blitz packages, all that good stuff," Gruden said. "There's a reason for us, offensively, to utilize it, and there's a reason not only from a point of view on game day, but also getting our defense ready for that kind of attack on Sundays. … I'm reading everywhere that a lot of teams are doing more no-huddle, so it's good for our defense to do the work."
With the final full-team OTA set for June 12, Gruden was asked about Griffin's overall chemistry with his receiving corps.
"I'm very happy with the way it's going," Gruden said. "We're not perfect, and I don't think anybody is right now. There's been some out of route too sharp, not sharp enough, maybe a little bit short, maybe a little deep. But I think the more we watch it, the more we rep it, the more comfortable he's going to be of knowing where people are and what depths and how they're coming out of their cuts."
Here are some other notes from the June 11 OTA, which was open to the media.
• Jon Gruden met with the media afterward and, in addition to talking about his brother, he was asked about Griffin.
"He's obviously had his eyes opened to the NFL," Jon Gruden said. "I know I had my eyes opened quickly as well. I think it will make him better in the long run, mentally tougher. I think he's obviously way ahead of the game physically. Last year, he was hurt at this time. It'll be a real interesting thing to see how he likes this offense and how he performs in it. I've got a lot of confidence in him personally."
• Cornerback DeAngelo Hall was not present after suffering a minor injury to his chin.
"He just went back to Atlanta for the night," Gruden said. "You know he's a cagey veteran. He felt he wanted to be with his family today, so I let him off. He's a little bit dinged up with his chin -- hurt his chin a little bit yesterday -- but he'll be okay."
• Gruden, who has had similar experiences in the past, said he was looking forward to the joint practices with the New England Patriots in August.
"This is a great way to change it up a little bit and go against someone else and see where you are with your personnel -- see their ones against your ones, twos against their twos, threes against their threes," he said, "and it might juggle the depth chart a little bit after that."
"Monday Night Football" analyst Jon Gruden spent June 11 watching younger brother Jay Gruden's Redskins practice and chatting with GM Bruce Allen.