Redskins could use DeSean Jackson more on punt returns

The Washington Redskins could look to use their best offensive weapon on special teams going forward.
Alex Brandon/AP

Washington Redskins wide receiver DeSean Jackson fielded one of the New York Giants' punts in the Redskins' 20-14 Week 12 win. It's assumed that Jackson is too valuable as a wide receiver to risk on punt return, but head coach Jay Gruden may be changing his tune.

“We’ll see a little bit more of [Jackson]. I think he’s a great punt returner, historically,” Gruden said to reporters, per CBS DC. “He’s not going to do it all the time but put him back there when they’re backed up and we have a chance for a good return I think is the smart thing to do.”

Jackson has returned four punts for touchdowns in his career — all of them came when he was with the Philadelphia Eagles. Jackson has missed most of the 2015 regular season with a hamstring injury, and rookie wide receiver Jamison Crowder has served as the punt returner.

“Nothing against Crowder, but DeSean is very explosive back there and has made some big plays in his career,” Gruden said. “That’s the only reason behind it. We could see more, but it depends on whether or not he wants to do it. If he wants to do it, we’ll put him back there.”

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