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Antonio Gibson's Role Expanding | Washington Commanders

By Adam Aniba

During a recent Commanders presser, Ron Rivera boasted about Antonio Gibson's ability as a pass catcher and the mismatch he causes for defenses.

The former Memphis Pass catcher has always been a receiver first, but has been pigeonholed in the running back role since being drafted by Washington.

New OC/Asst. Coach Eric Bieniemy brings much needed innovation to Washington's offense. Utilizing Gibson in multiple roles is something EB will tinker with.

Washington dealt with their first major injury of the offseason, when second year tight end Armani Rogers (FULL Story) went down with an achilles injury. Although Rogers was used sparingly last season, prior to his knee injury he was used in the wildcat formation under center with plans to expand his role.

With Bieniemy running the offense now, it's likely we see a large uptick in targets and snaps for Gibson. In three seasons AG has rushed for 2,378 yards on 577 attempts with 21 touchdowns. As a pass catcher, he's recorded 894 yards on 124 receptions for 5 TDs (7.2 yds per rec). Although those are better than average numbers, the former Memphis receiver has been grossly underutilized as a pass catcher.

Prior to Robinson being shot last season, Gibson was relegated to kick return duties, but that all changed with Robinson out.

Despite Gibson being a legit receiving threat, former OC Scott Turner refused to utilize Gibson's ability as a route runner and used him strictly as a check down option in the passing game (353 receiving yards in '22).

During Thursday's presser Ron Rivera was asked how imperative Gibson will be in the screen game, considering the heavy dose of screens utilized in Kansas City's offense.

"He's important and Eric (Bieniemy) has plans for him (Gibson), we're looking at creative ways to get the ball to our playmakers."

Utilizing Washington's top receivers on bubble screens will be key, but Gibson's ability to lineup all over the field gives them the flexibility to be even more creative.

Although Gibson is in the final season of his rookie deal, he seems tailor made for the new offense. His ability in the open field as a pass catcher gives Bieniemy options, which should lead to a career year for the former 3rd round pick.



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