Jets coach Adam Gase said he expects Crowder to catch 70-to-90 passes, Ralph Vacchiano of SportsNet New York reports. "[Crowder]'s a downfield threat," Gase said Tuesday. "We've never had a guy that can really juice it up like he can."
While it's probably a stretch to label the prized offseason acquisition as a downfield threat, Gase is accurate in his assertion that Crowder is more explosive than a typical slot receiver. The 2015 fourth-round pick produced 11.9 yards per catch and 8.0 per target in 56 games for Washington, albeit with just 14 touchdowns among 221 receptions (6.3 percent TD rate). It won't come as any surprise if Crowder responds with a career-best season after signing a three-year, $28.5 million contract that includes $17 million guaranteed, but he does have serious competition for targets playing alongside running back Le'Veon Bell, tight end Chris Herndon and wide receivers Robby Anderson and Quincy Enunwa. With no truly dominant pass catcher among the bunch, Sam Darnold figures to spread the ball around in his second pro season.
Crowder is closing in on a deal with the Jets, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.
Looking to bounce back from an injury-plagued 2018 campaign, Crowder will man the slot in New York while Robby Anderson and Quincy Enunwa take most of the snaps outside. None of the bunch is proven as a true No. 1 target, but they're each useful players with vastly different skill sets. Crowder's career marks of 11.9 yards per catch and 8.0 per target are excellent by the standards of a slot specialist. His fantasy value largely hinges on the continued development of quarterback Sam Darnold, who came on strong at the end of his rookie campaign.
Crowder finished the 2018 campaign with 29 catches for 388 yards and two touchdowns on 49 targets in nine games.
The 2015 fourth-round pick played 15 or 16 games in each of his first three seasons, catching 59, 67 and 66 passes while primarily working the slot. His role didn't change in 2018, but he struggled to find chemistry with Alex Smith (leg) early in the season, then missed seven consecutive games with an ankle injury. By the time Crowder made it back into the lineup, Colt McCoy (leg) had taken over at quarterback, soon to be followed by Mark Sanchez and eventually Josh Johnson. Now scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent, Crowder should be one of the more attractive options at his position, boasting a 67.2 percent career catch rate with 8.0 yards per target. He still has some breakout appeal ahead of his age-26 season, though it may require a change of scenery if the Redskins can't figure out their quarterback situation. Even if the breakout never happens, Crowder should find his way back toward his 2016-17 level of contribution.
Crowder (wrist) practiced fully Thursday.
Crowder quickly ditched a wrist injury that capped his practice reps Wednesday. With the issue behind him, he can take aim at an Eagles defense that has given up 8.4 YPT and 17 touchdowns to wide receivers this season.
Crowder was limited at Wednesday's practice due to a wrist injury, Les Carpenter of The Washington Post reports.
Crowder spent the meat of the 2018 campaign in recovery mode as a result of an ankle issue, but the fourth-year wide receiver has connected with whoever has been under center for the Redskins the past four games, hauling in 15 of his 22 targets for 247 yards and one touchdown. Assuming he's active Sunday against the Eagles, he should serve as Josh Johnson's No. 1 option with Jordan Reed (foot) a long shot to play and Maurice Harris and Vernon Davis both embedded in the concussion protocol.
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