When the Carolina Panthers knew they were in the market for a first-round quarterback a year ago, they were careful to give him plenty of weapons.
The same could be happening in Washington, where new face-of-the-franchise Robert Griffin III could benefit from a new-look receiving corps.
The early returns have been good for Pierre Garcon and Josh Morgan in Redskins minicamp, with Garcon’s one-handed diving catch from Griffin the highlight of Tuesday’s minicamp.
“We’ve got a lot of young, good receivers. Everything is going good,” Morgan told the Washington Post. “We’re learning. We’re getting more comfortable. We’re getting better as an offense and Robert is improving every day. I’m excited about everything.”
Having a set of targets he can count on will be crucial in Griffin’s development.
The Panthers set the stage for Cam Newton’s off-the-charts rookie season by bringing in tight ends Jeremy Shockey and Greg Olsen to go with veteran wideout Steve Smith, giving the rookie plenty to work with.
The Redskins can only hope the first-day splash in free agency to bring in Garcon and Morgan, to go along with veteran Santana Moss) has a similar impact.
“I’m extremely impressed,” backup quarterback Rex Grossman said after a recent practice. “They’re definitely big-time free agents for a reason. They’ve got skills that show up on tape. Since we’ve been out here, it’s been the exact same thing.”
Of course, there’s still an element of the unknown. Neither Garcon nor Morgan has ever posted a 1,000-yard season (no Redskin did in 2011 either). Garcon’s numbers could easily be viewed as inflated by playing with some guy named Peyton Manning, while Morgan’s still carrying seven screws in his leg from last year’s broken ankle, and has been limited through OTAs.