Welcome back to The B&G Report! Skins fans were clamoring for SPEED at the WR position all offseason. Well they got their man, with recently signed pass catcher Paul Richardson Jr! The former Seattle speedster checks in at 6’0 183 lbs, so he’s not as small as slot receiver Jamison Crowder. Many fans wanted a true number one receiver signed in Free Agency, but in my opinion the former 2014 second round pick has the potential to be just that. This Free Agent class didn’t have a true number one receiver. I don’t view recently signed Bears WR Allen Robinson, as a receiver that scares defenses with his 4.60 speed, not to say that he’s not a very good possession receiver. At $14 + million a year, I’m glad the Skins didn’t go that route. In comparison, Richardson Jr signed for nearly $6 million less a year. Fans have voiced their concerns, regarding Richard’s previouse ACL injuries. The former Seahawk will be 26 next month, so old injuries don’t concern me, after watching his 2017 film. His speed/athleticism hasn’t suffered, that’s for sure! This up in coming talent, has the opportunity to be Washington’s version of Kansas City Chiefs speedster Tyreek Hill! It will take more than speed to take Richardson’s production to the next level though, but the youngster seems up to the task. Let’s get into the 3 Things To Know About Richardson!
After watching Paul Richardson’s 2013 tape at Colorado, I walked away extremely impressed! He finished that year with 1343 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns. I also found an under utilized pass catcher in Seattle, based on his 2017 game film. I do see that his drop rate was high last year, but he also has a knack for making spectacular plays. Many players go through fumbling & drop issues early in their careers, but the good ones improve. Richardson will have a bigger role in Washington, compared to his previous role in Seattle as a third or fourth receiving option. You just can’t teach speed and this kid has it! The 2014 Draft pick ran an official 4.40 Forty Yard Dash at his combine workout, but many at the Combine had him clocked as low as 4.32! Fast forward to 2018 and this kid looks as fast as ever! NFL Analyst Bucky Brooks echoed those sentiments.
“Richardson looks like Desean Jackson the way he’s built and the way he can run, he can stretch the field as an outside receiver as well.”
-Bucky Brooks NFL Network
Richardson put together a nice 2017 season, unfortunately the rest of the Seattle offense struggled.
Football IQ and Love For Football
Richardson believes he can be more than just a deep threat. At the same time, the youngster stated he’s just “scratching the surface” of his ability. He also acknowledged, he’s looking forward to to working with Alex Smith. His coaches at Colorado and Seattle view him as a student of the game, who loves to watch film. The former Seahawk mentioned, how he already had an early jump on Alex Smith’s film. He believes that this is the perfect offense for him, with opportunities to find open spots all over the field. Richardson went on to say that after watching Redskins game film, he realized that Jay Gruden would get the best out of him. Personally I want a player who loves football, has a high football IQ and will do what it takes to help the team. So far Richardson is saying all the right things, but this is his opportunity of a lifetime and he has a chance to put up big numbers in Washington.
Now field awareness, might just be Richardson’s best attribute! His former quarterback, Russell Wilson has made a career of going off script, when plays breakdown. Richardson doesn’t get nearly enough credit for his ability to adjust on the fly. Richardson has a knack of knowing when to jump off his route, before the defense even realizes the play is compromised. One particular game in 2017, showed just how much Richardson can impact a game, as well as his potential to be a top level receiver. A close game vs Houston is where the former Colorado Buffalo shined! He went off in the tune of 105 yards receiving with 2 touchdowns that game.
In this game Richardson was simply uncover able. Wilson’s game is based on QB rollouts and boot action plays, Richardson thrived in that offense! After acquiring Alex Smith from the Chiefs, it’s become apparent per various reports that Gruden will utilize more play action and Run Pass Option packages. It’s only natural for Gruden to utilize Smith’s ability as a dual threat, but Richardson could be the key to Washington’s success in offense. Similar to Wilson, Smith will also roll out of the pocket at times to open up throwing lanes. Richardson has talent and Smith is the type of quarterback to get the best out of him! Richardson is a self professed film junky, as is Smith. It could just be the glass half full mentality in me, but I think with the potential to have; Jordan Reed (if he can stay healthy), Vernon Davis, Josh Doctson, Jamison Crowder, Chris Thompson and the future franchise running back, could dramatically change the outlook for this offense. Having a full cast clicking on all cylinders, could take a lot of pressure off the former Seahawk receiver as well. I’m envisioning Richardson having a minimal impact to start the season, but he showed in Seattle that the more reps he got, the more productive he was. Being able to find open spots all over the field is what will ultimately determine Richardson’s success in Washington. If Gruden is smart, he’ll use the Chiefs blueprint for Tyreek Hill lining up all over the field and implement that into his offense with Richardson. I for one have high hopes for the his potential, as well as the rest of this offense. If Doug Williams stays true to his word that running back will be resolved early in the Draft, this offense could be dynamic in 2018!
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