After missing last week's win over the Vikings due to his shoulder injury, DeSean Jackson returned to the field Sunday night, scoring the first of six touchdowns for the Redskins.
Both the Redskins and Packers were struggling to find success on offense in the first quarter of Sunday night's battle. But Kirk Cousins was eventually able to lead the Redskins down the field to the Green Bay 17-yard line late in the opening frame, getting into position to take an early lead.
On 3rd-and-2, Cousins gets a snap in shotgun and the offensive line bides him time to find his open receiver, veteran DeSean Jackson, around the four-yard line. Despite having defenders around him, Jackson had no issue getting the extra yards for a score. The Redskins went up 6-0 and Jackson officially marked his return after missing a game due to a shoulder injury he has been dealing with in recent weeks.
The spark he brought in his return to the team, which went on to defeat the Packers 42-24, was felt as Green Bay's secondary had no choice but to be on their heels, concerned about Jackson's speed.
"DeSean is … he's a performer. His ability to get downfield and make plays is unparalled," Vernon Davis said. "You won't find another DeSean in this league. You probably won't find another DeSean anywhere. He's fast, he's a football player. Great attitude, always come to practice with great energy and he's a good person to be around."
Jackson finished the night with four receptions for 51 yards and the touchdown. With last night's catches, Jackson now has 34 for 467 yards on the season.
Following the primetime win, the injury that kept him out just a week ago was no longer much of a concern.
"[The shoulder] feels good. I can't really feel it right now. It will probably be a little sore later on in the morning, but it's a great win [and] a great team effort," Jackson said. "Everybody pitched in and was a part of it. I'm just excited about it. [We] have a quick turnaround week. Everybody's focused on this next game coming up. It's going to be another big one. Every game from here on out is going to be a big one, so we just have to put it all together."
The offense certainly got things going in the right direction against the Packers, amassing 515 total net yards and averaging 8.3 yards per play. The distraction that Jackson brought allowed other receivers to have increased production, especially Pierre Garçon. The receiver had six receptions for 110 yards, including a 70-yard touchdown catch. The production from all over the field in the passing game with Jackson back in and Cousins having a strong performance will hopefully be the building block for many similar games to come. Jackson couldn't say enough about what Cousins was able to put together and what it could mean for the future.
Check out the top images from the Washington Redskins' offense in their 2016 Week 10 matchup against the Green Bay Packers Nov. 20, 2016, at FedExField.
"Outstanding. QB rating 145. We need him to play like that a lot more," Jackson said about Cousins' performance. "I think if we can get our guy back there playing like that, we're pretty much unstoppable like we were out there today. Everybody's eating – [Jamison] Crowder, J-Reed [Jordan Reed], I did a little something here-and-there, Pierre [Garçon] had some big catches and things of the nature. So we have to be excited about it, but we put this one behind us and keep moving forward."
Going forward includes playing again this Thursday against the Cowboys. With Jackson appearing to be full-go once again, the challenge will now become maintaining a similar offensive output down the stretch.
"It's one game. You can't put all the eggs in one basket for one game. We have to continue to come out here and put the work in every week," Jackson said. "This is going to be a quick week for us, we play another on Thanksgiving. That game means a lot for us. We see everybody winning in our division and we still have a lot of work to put in to get to where we need to get to. We know what's at stake and we know what we want to accomplish at the same time."