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Does It Makes Dollars And Sense For The Redskins To Let Pierre Garcon And DeSean Jackson go?

One analyst expresses surprise to Breaking Burgundy over the Redskins' apparent decision to let DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon go while offering alternatives.

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Washington Redskins appear set on not retaining free agent wide receiver Pierre Garcon. There are strong indications the same goes for DeSean Jackson as well. There's not enough PR spin in the world to make anyone believe the receiver unit, easily one of the team's strengths the past two seasons, won't take a significant hit. Sure, the Redskins are likely to add free agent help. Until they do, until we can put a name on the replacements, there's reason for at least some amount of head-scratching.

“I’m surprised they are so willing to do that [let both Garcon and Jackson go],"'s Gregg Rosenthal told Breaking during an interview at the NFL Combine. "They have [Josh] Doctson, they have [Jamison] Crowder. I would think they get in on another free agent receiver. Maybe they like the value of the guys that are out there more than paying DeSean $11 [million]. And I get it, DeSean’s third big contract so maybe you don’t want to team that gives him the third big contract. Maybe it’s smart not to go on with the 31-year old receivers.

Maybe it's smart spending less on the position. Washington spent 16.15 percent of its total 2016 salary cap on wide receivers last season, second most in the league behind Denver. Of the top five teams to spend on receivers, only Atlanta made the playoffs. Super Bowl champion New England ranks 13th, though the Patriots typically don't spend heavily on the position.

Wide receiver is the most dependant position on ether side of the ball. Even the best receivers only typically catch between 4-7 passes per game. Offensive linemen and quarterbacks are involved in every plays. Lead running backs receive between 15-25 touches. Defenders are live every play.

Yet you need options. Crowder is turning into a slot standout, but we'll see what happens if defensives aren't keying on the speedy Jackson and the durable Garcon. Doctson's rookie season was washed out by an Achilles injury. Massive upside remains, but who can say for sure if the 2016 first-round pick will thrive. Ryan Grant and Maurice are interesting, but unproven backups. They need more.

"I wouldn’t be surprised f they spend similar type of money on a Kenny Stills or a Kenny Britt," Rosenthal theorized. 

Stills is a speed-type receiver who burned brightly at times with Miami last year. Britt resurrected his career in Los Angeles despite the Rams' miserable quarterback play. Breaking Burgundy previously reported the lengthy target is on Washington's radar. The change at head coach to former Redskins offensive coordinator has apparently taken Britt out of the Rams' plans.

“He was great last year, but the Rams really don’t show any interest in keeping him, which is a little bit of a red flag," first roundRosenthal said of first-roundpick. "He was Jeff Fisher’s guy too and there was definitely a schism between Jeff Fisher and the front office. They’re running McVay’s system now and they made it clear (at the Combine) he’s hitting free agency and they don’t see him as a fit.

"If you were just judging off of 2016 play, you didn’t know anything about his off-field stuff, or is work ethic or his up and down career, I would say he is the best free agent wide receiver. Well, Alshon [Jeffery] would be one, Britt would be two just based off on how good he looked last year.”

Those are two of the top options indeed. The thing is, Jackson and Garcon aren't right there as well.

"I would put DeSean in the top 15 overall free agents that are getting out there and Garcon’s going to be in the top 25. ... They’re going to get starter money," Rosenthal said. "Tampa could be in on DeSean and Garcon.

Rosenthal also mentioned the Rams and 49ers as possibilities because McVay and Kyle Shanahan, also a former Redskins offensive coordinator, are new head coaches.

“I think the Redskins are getting a high-class problem without really having the success that you would like. With Shanahan and McVay out there as coaches, it’s like they have more competition for those ex-Redskins. Happens to the Patriots and the Seahawks, but you wouldn’t expect it to happen to the Redskins."

Getting compared to those two recent Super Bowl champions is arguably positive. That the Redskins don't have recent Super Bowl rings makes it less so. No Washington must decide if spending big dollars at wide receivers helps get them closer to that bling. Assuming Garcon and Jackson leave, it's clear they must do something.

Ben Standig is the Publisher of Breaking Burgundy and the Huddle Report's 2012 NFL Mock Draft champion. You can find him on Twitter @benstandig and on Google+.

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