Mark Zinno: The DeSean Jackson Effect
DeSean Jackson is the newest member of the Washington Redskins. He brings game-changing speed, big play making ability and a whole lot of attitude. People have immediately jumped on “the Skins offense will be crazy good” bandwagon. Pierre Garcon has speed. Jackson has speed. Fred Davis has … well, he’s big and a match-up problem … speed not so much. But anyway, the weapons are numerous. So the Skins have catapulted back to the top of the NFC East after a 3-13 season because of DeSean Jackson. Well, I don’t buy it. And here’s why.
Let’s put aside for a moment the gang-related stuff. While that matters, for the purposes of the on the field stuff, it really doesn’t at this point. The bottom line for the Redskins is simple. This isn’t about how Jackson makes the team better. This is simply about RG3 and if he can get better. If you surround a 3rd year QB with this many offensive weapons, and he doesn’t flourish, then he never will. You think Joe Flacco looks at what the Skins have and is jealous? You bet your ass he is. Dear Lord. But the weight of the world landed on RG3’s shoulders with this signing. And now that his knee is over a full year from the surgery and he should be back to the 2012 RG3, the kid better learn how to pass from the pocket. And fast … what’s the use of having all the weapons, if you can’t get them the ball? Forget DeSean Jackson being an off the field problem, he will be a huge on the field problem if you don’t get him the damn ball!
What is RG3 lacking in the most as a QB? Ability to read defenses and pass from the pocket. That’s sort of important, don’t you think? Why have the Colts been in the playoffs the last two years with just awful talent surrounding Andrew Luck? Well, he reads defenses, has incredible pocket awareness and may be the best pure passer in the league. That’s why. This DeSean Jackson move puts Robert Griffin right in the cross hairs. The target is squarely on him. It’s now or never. If this team struggles and he plays poorly, close the book on whether or not RG3 will be a top QB in this league. He won’t be.