Quick takes on the Redskins' tight ends following a 45-41 win over the Chicago Bears:
Rookie tight end Jordan Reed has impressed the coaches not just with his athleticism, but with his talent and work ethic. Both he and Logan Paulsen, and Niles Paul for that matter, are strong workers.
I never thought Reed would take Fred Davis' place so soon, mainly because of the blocking skills he showed in college. But that work ethic vaulted him past Fred Davis. I remember thinking that it took Davis a while to get that part down. However, based on what I hear about Reed as a rookie compared to what I recall hearing about Davis from his first season, I’m not surprised one got it faster than the other.
Davis has been his own worst enemy when it comes to his career, first with the drug suspension. Can’t blame him for the injury. But if he had the same work ethic as Paulsen and Reed, then Davis would not be in the spot he is now. Yes, his ankle is still bothering him but that provides an excuse as much as anything.
Also, Davis will continue to be inactive (unless all four tight ends are active) because of his inability to play special teams. Paulsen and Paul both play special teams. Davis does not. Unless something changes, he’ll enter free agency coming off another season that leads to more questions than answers about his game. Having said all that, if his legs are healthy, Davis can still play. It's also not as if Davis has somehow changed his habits this year. It's just that the Redskins just found better alternatives.
Robert Griffin III completed all nine of his passes to Reed; he completed 9-of-20 passes to everyone else. Griffin averaged 14.9 yards per pass attempt to Reed; 8.2 yards per attempt to everyone else. Reed gained 50 yards after the catch and now has 139 for the season.
Reed set a new franchise record for yards gained by a rookie tight end with 134 yards.