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Kelly Is Making Strides

He only had three catches for 25 yards. And on a third-down reception Thursday in the Redskins' preseason opener against Baltimore, Malcolm Kelly did not run a route deep enough to extend a possession.

The second-year wide receiver, however, displayed some of the skills that could provide a major boost to the Redskins' offense. From watching Kelly, you get the sense he's the guy quarterback Jason Campbell and top wideout Santana Moss have been waiting for to help provide big plays in the passing game.

Second-year wideout Devin Thomas started ahead of Kelly in the 23-0 loss to the Ravens and is expected to battle Kelly for the position throughout the preseason. Regardless of who wins the job, both players are expected have significant roles in the offense. And if Kelly's knee holds up (he had microfracture surgery in the offseason), he could emerge as a go-to target for Campbell. "It was definitely good to see Malcolm out there doing what he does," Campbell said. "As long as he can just stay out there, I know he can help us. We need him."

By Jason Reid  |  August 16, 2009; 6:51 AM ET
Categories:  Jason Reid  
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Next: Hall, Mitchell Tangle in More Intense Practice

Comments

Kelly is better than Thomas.

Posted by: saqster | August 16, 2009 7:18 AM | Report abuse

I agree, Kelly has great hands and will go far on our team, but even I can play better than someone injured sitting on the sidelines. If he just stays in the game...

Posted by: Keiser | August 16, 2009 7:27 AM | Report abuse

hopefully he cab stay healthy enough to stay on the field and campbell makes the read fast enough to throw it

Posted by: stivic | August 16, 2009 7:29 AM | Report abuse

On at least one throw Thursday night, either Thomas ran the wrong route or Campbell completely blew the throw. Thomas has the speed to be a number one or number two, but he has got to get the route running down. Perhaps the receivers coach should give him some extra attention on route skills, if he hasn't already.

Kelly looked like he could grow into a possession receiver role (something the Redskins haven't had since Henry Ellard or Art Monk). Kelly is too slow to be a number one. But he seems to be in position, and if Campbell is able to get the ball close to him he's able to catch it.

Posted by: tkoho | August 16, 2009 8:24 AM | Report abuse

Kelly provides a big target. He's a possession receiver. Thomas can stretch the field with his speed. I think there's room for both in this offense. I just wonder about ARE. People say he'll do much better in the slot but the guy still has a habit of dropping the ball at the most inoportune times. His stats look okay on paper but the guy has killed numerous drives with his lack of focus. Plus, he is not a good punt returner any longer. I, for one, would like to see the team trade Randal El and give the other young receivers on the roster a shot at landing a spot on the roster. I was hoping they would do more to open some eyes on Thursday night, but Hagans disappointed and Mitchell just didn't get the ball. In fairness, by the time they came in, their quarterback was not getting much time to look downfield. Still,
I would be happy if the team traded away ARE and got some value out of the trade: a third or fourth round pick or a decent offensive tackle to provide more competition in camp.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | August 16, 2009 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Have they cut 80 yet?

Posted by: alex35332 | August 16, 2009 8:33 AM | Report abuse

Matthew Stafford looked good last night. Lions came back on the last play to beat the Falcons. I don't see any 0-16 in Detroit this year. Fact, they scored 27 points. That's 27 more than us this week...

Posted by: SonofNero | August 16, 2009 8:40 AM | Report abuse

Fact, they scored 27 points. That's 27 more than us this week...

Posted by: SonofNero | August 16, 2009 8:40 AM | Report abuse


Figured that out all by yourself smart guy

Posted by: jonthefisherman | August 16, 2009 8:45 AM | Report abuse

Fact, they scored 27 points. That's 27 more than us this week...

Posted by: SonofNero | August 16, 2009 8:40 AM | Report abuse


Figured that out all by yourself smart guy

Posted by: jonthefisherman | August 16, 2009 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Fact, they scored 27 points. That's 27 more than us this week...

Posted by: SonofNero | August 16, 2009 8:40 AM | Report abuse


Figured that out all by yourself smart guy

Posted by: jonthefisherman | August 16, 2009 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Sorry about the triple post

Posted by: jonthefisherman | August 16, 2009 8:48 AM | Report abuse

redskinhead

"I... would like to see the team trade Randal El and give the other young receivers on the roster a shot at landing a spot on the roster..."

Ask yourself if you really think Randle El has any trade value.

I don't.

There are younger, cheaper, more dynamic versions of Randle El that will get cut in about three weeks, so why give up anything for him?

The skins' FO over-reached when they added him to the team and have overpaid him as well.

Best bet?: DJ Hackett steps into the void and becomes a reliable target while Thomas/Kelly mature.

Posted by: MistaMoe | August 16, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

"Matthew Stafford looked good last night."


And Mark Sanchez did as well a couple of nights before.

The effect on Jason Campbell?: again, if another pair of rookie quarterbacks come into the league and excel (add Stafford-Sanchez to last year's Flacco-Ryan), it only raises whatever non-discussed bar the FO has set.

Campbell could perform better this year, but the team could low-ball his contract numbers and say, "Hey, there are rookies and second year players getting his numbers."

"How does he deserve elite money or elite respect?"

Posted by: MistaMoe | August 16, 2009 8:57 AM | Report abuse

"The skins' FO over-reached when they added him to the team and have overpaid him as well."

...gosh never heard that before. Thats all Vinnie knows how to do. Its akin to the "throw everything we have at the wall and see what sticks" methodology. As long as Vinnie is the GM the Skins will only be medicore at best. He is the worst evaluator of talent in the NFL. And unfortunately even after he finally gets fired, the Skins will still live with the damage he has done for many many years...just look at what the inept Wes Unseld as GM for the Wizards did and how long it took them to come back after years of bad personnel decisions. Unfortunately Vinnie=Wes. I'm afraid its going to be a long painful season for the Skins this year...and next.


Posted by: oddjob2 | August 16, 2009 9:04 AM | Report abuse

Matthew Stafford looked good last night. Lions came back on the last play to beat the Falcons. I don't see any 0-16 in Detroit this year. Fact, they scored 27 points. That's 27 more than us this week...

Posted by: SonofNero | August 16, 2009 8:40 AM | Report abuse


I guess the fact that they went 4-0 in the preseason last year is lost on you?

Posted by: jumbo5383 | August 16, 2009 9:20 AM | Report abuse

All I want for Christmas is Jason Campbell to throw the football DOWNFIELD.

Jesus dude, get over your stupid freaking dumpoffs. WE GET IT, YOU STUDIED UNDER MARK BRUNELL! BUT MARK BRUNELL COULD BE DUMPING THE BALL OFF! THROW THE BALL! THROW IT! YOU PLAY, TO WIN, THE GAME!! PLAYOFFS!?! PLAYOFFS!?! WE'RE TALKING ABOUT PLAYOFFS!?! PRACTICE? NOT A GAME? PRACTICE!

Posted by: TheTruth11 | August 16, 2009 9:22 AM | Report abuse

The truth has spoken

Posted by: jonthefisherman | August 16, 2009 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Everybody's knees alright out there?

Preseason = Power Rankings

Posted by: Yoder-lay-hee-who | August 16, 2009 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Sorry about the triple post

Posted by: jonthefisherman | August 16, 2009 8:48 AM |

No prob, smart guy.

Posted by: mack1 | August 16, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Truth,

JC won't throw the ball unless the WR is wide open, IMO. I've seen enough to say he lacks the ability to "anticipate" and throw the ball to a spot. He had time this game and wouldn't let it go. Zorn eludes to this during his 8/15 video when he says Tryon was assignment correct, needs to anticipate better, then says the QB's do too.

Posted by: 1965skinsfan | August 16, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse


If the Eagles are such a class and "winning" organization, why don't they have a Super Bowl trophy?

Posted by: rickyroge | August 16, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

Jumbo,

Not sure if Sonof was writing about the fact they won, or that the QB played well? My guess is the fact he played well, and oh by the way, they won and in doing so scored 27 points. No team ever wants to lay a goose egg. Not during drills, scrimmages, preseason or regular season. To win preseason games is insignificant, but to play well while you're in there and move the team and score, that's what is important.

Posted by: 1965skinsfan | August 16, 2009 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Did anyone watch the Lions play? I'm curious how Jansen looked.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | August 16, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Matthew Stafford looked good last night. Lions came back on the last play to beat the Falcons. I don't see any 0-16 in Detroit this year. Fact, they scored 27 points. That's 27 more than us this week...

Posted by: SonofNero | August 16, 2009 8:40 AM

The fact that the Lions went 4-0 last preseason should give you insight to the logic in your reasoning. It's the 1st game of the preseason the 2nd most meaningless game of the year you can't seriously determine anything yet.

Posted by: TWISI | August 16, 2009 10:02 AM | Report abuse

Did anyone watch the Lions play? I'm curious how Jansen looked.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | August 16, 2009 9:54 AM

Falcons only got one sack, so he couldn't have played too long.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 16, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

Mistamoe,
I think you're right. The most we could probably expect from a trade of ARE is 50 cents and three old bottle caps. Still, a guy who kills drives should not have a place on this team. If ARE were 21 years old, then it is understandable, but he is at the "peaked" part of his career, and if he can't make the plays now, he never will. I know the team won't flat out cut him, so the only way my wish would come true is if they trade him.

I like Hackett. He's a bigger receiver than Randal El and he has experience playing the west coast offense. I like Marko Mitchell too, and I would like to see him on the roster as well. Hagans looked good in practice but really didn't excite in the game. He may be one of those players that practices well but plays horribly. He has been around the league long enough that he should be over the spotlight jitters, so I am thinking his problem is chronic and the team should move on. I am changing my thinking on Eloi. I thought he was a probably a practice squad candidate but he could be a kickoff returner if the team goes another way with Cartwright.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | August 16, 2009 10:05 AM | Report abuse

JC's ability to stretch the field depends on Kelly/Thomas developing into a legit #2 WR (otherwise 89 will be get lots of double teams) and the O-line doing their job (otherwise JC will be eating turf before the receiver runs his route). But yes it would be great to open it up a few times a game and look for the deep ball if we're able to open up the running game first. WCO is based on the shorter horizontal passes so that's not goin anywhere

Posted by: Notorious_LMG | August 16, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

ARE is not the problem. How many drives has he killed, compared to say, Campbell throwing the ball short? Or to Zorn calling the wrong play?

You like Hackett? How many games does he play in a season? 9 last year, 6 the year before. Less than a full season in the last two seasons.

This is preseason. ARE, like all the others you mention, is competing for a job. If the others can beat him, then good bye and thanks for the memories (even though they weren't so good).

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 16, 2009 10:42 AM | Report abuse

TE u really think ARE is competing for a job? I wish that were true but I don't

Posted by: Notorious_LMG | August 16, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

ARE is the only Redskins receiver that specializes in getting open short of the first down marker. He's been a crucial part of JC17's inflated completion percentage. Cutting ARE would be devastating to all JC17 apologists.

Posted by: Kenbeatrizz | August 16, 2009 10:50 AM | Report abuse

TE u really think ARE is competing for a job? I wish that were true but I don't

Posted by: Notorious_LMG | August 16, 2009 10:48 AM

Yes, I do. I think if the guys behind him step up and offer more than he does, then he's gone. I don't think they can do that though.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 16, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

What are the cap implications of an ARE cut?

Posted by: Kenbeatrizz | August 16, 2009 10:59 AM | Report abuse

how many receivers are we keeping, 4 or 5? Moss, Kelly, THomas are obviously locks. I'd think ARE is too, but maybe I'm wrong...I'd love to see Mitchell, Hackett step up and grab a spot too. Marko could be a good practice squad guy

Posted by: Notorious_LMG | August 16, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

"microfracture surgery' om a second year guy. This guy will never make it in the NFL. That surgery is used to extend the careers of old guys. It never holds up for more then a year or two.

They should have cut him already.

Posted by: drpolarbear | August 16, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

They should have cut him already.

Posted by: drpolarbear | August 16, 2009 11:06 AM

You cut him when you have a better prospect. Until then, you keep him.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 16, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Jason Campbell Throw the Ball Downfield!!!! ....... and then what? Kid&Play(Thomas/Kelly) can't even run the correct routes Campbell needs wideouts that get it, that give a damn about being the best instead of just going through the motions this is their second year in the system under Zorn and they still can't get it right they should know the playbook inside out but all JC has to work with concerning these two is mediocrity. The fan base some of them; continue to give JC the blues but what does he have to work with think about it, an O line that is still a work in progress and aging before our very eyes a running back(Portis) headed downhill in terms of his ability and a head coach whose got to be looking over his shoulder.

Posted by: dargregmag | August 16, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Jason Campbell Throw the Ball Downfield!!!! ....... and then what? Kid&Play(Thomas/Kelly) can't even run the correct routes Campbell needs wideouts that get it, that give a damn about being the best instead of just going through the motions this is their second year in the system under Zorn and they still can't get it right they should know the playbook inside out but all JC has to work with concerning these two is mediocrity. The fan base some of them; continue to give JC the blues but what does he have to work with think about it, an O line that is still a work in progress and aging before our very eyes a running back(Portis) headed downhill in terms of his ability and a head coach whose got to be looking over his shoulder.

Posted by: dargregmag | August 16, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Sorry about the double post.

Posted by: dargregmag | August 16, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Wow, what's up with all the ARE hate? Okay, he's not an all pro but guess what? He's the only other proven WR besides Moss that this team can count on. Let's not forget, in 2007 against the Lions when Moss was out, ARE stepped up and had over 150yds receiving and could of had more if he hadn't left the game with an injury. Amazing how some people on here are willing to get rid of a veteran for some WR's who either A. Can't stay on the field B. Don't know their routes.
Give me a break

Posted by: ga8085 | August 16, 2009 11:52 AM | Report abuse

That surgery is used to extend the careers of old guys. It never holds up for more then a year or two.
Posted by: drpolarbear | August 16, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Don't tell that to Greg Oden or Amare Stoudemire, they'd be pissed:

"There are things about this that are positive for Greg. First of all he is young. The area where the damage was is small and the rest of his knee looked normal. All those are good signs for a complete recovery from micro fracture surgery." --according to the Trailblazers team physician.
http://www.nba.com/blazers/news/Oden_Undergoes_Microfracture_S-236705-1218.html

2008–2009
Stoudemire was still the leading the team in scoring and rebounding. Stoudemire started for the winning Western Conference in the 2009 NBA All-Star Game.

Stoudemire underwent microfracture surgery on October 18, 2005.

Posted by: RomoLongballs | August 16, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

beep beep

Posted by: tafka | August 16, 2009 12:14 PM | Report abuse

talent_evaluator

"You cut him (ARE) when you have a better prospect. Until then, you keep him."

True, very true.

And you have to wonder at the skill that teams like the stillers and iggles have when they can determine a guy is past his prime and release him so he can sign a big deal and underperform elsewhere.

Example: This past season, the stillers let N Washington go--he was the guy they promoted to fill ARE's shoes--to get L Sweed on the field with S Holmes.

Skins' fan issues with ARE really are the end result of sorry talent management that overpays, over reaches for pastprime players, and underdevelopes drafted players.

We hate on ARE, but there is no developed drafted replacement.

Talent, your evaluation is right on the mark--and that's your talent.

Posted by: MistaMoe | August 16, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

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