Projecting Receptions by Position: NFC East

JORDAN-REED

Washington Redskins

2017 Totals
Kirk Cousins: 347 completions on 540 attempts
WR Group: 182 Receptions
RB Group: 79 Receptions
TE Group: 85 Receptions

2018 Projections
Alex Smith: 350 completions on 525 attempts
WR Group: 180 Receptions
RB Group: 85 Receptions
TE Group: 85 Receptions

Kirk Cousins; out. Alex Smith; in. The checkdown master comes to D.C., and with him a propensity to target his TE’s and RB’s. The question is, how much of that was Smith and how much of it was the surrounding talent? Show of hands; how many people drafted a KC WR last year not named Tyreek Hill? None of Smith’s new WR’s have the talent of Hill, but there are at least 3 that are worth mentioning. It’s something. There’s a small drop off in talent at TE and RB from what Smith is used to, but not enough to make me concerned. With new toy Derrius Guice presumably leading the charge in the backfield and Smith’s own superior running ability over Cousins, I’d cap the projected passing attempts in 2018 at what Cousins did last year. Realistically, I see it dropping to about 525 attempts from Smith. The relatively similar weapons should lead to Smith posting around 67% completion percentage like he has the past few years, which translates to 350 projected completions.

As a group the Redskins RB’s are perfectly capable of matching what Smith left in KC. They should be utilized slightly more than in previous years, both in terms of number of carries and targets. I’d love to say the same about the TE group, but let’s face it; at this point Jordan Reed is pretty much just an urban legend young safeties and linebackers are told to scare them into eating their vegetables. There’s no doubt in my mind that a healthy Reed is targeted the same way Travis Kelce was in KC, but when was the last time Reed was actually healthy long enough to build up some momentum? Vernon Davis may be a familiar sight for Smith – not to mention surprisingly spry for a 34 year old – but it’s just not the same. A healthy TE group likely sees more receptions than what I’m projecting, but given Reed’s injury history and the variety of solid (if not necessarily inspiring) options at WR, I just can’t give them the benefit of the doubt.

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