After being sidelined for eight weeks since injuring his hamstring in the season opener, DeSean Jackson made his return to the field Sunday vs. the Patriots.
Wide receiver DeSean Jackson made his much-awaited return Sunday at Gillette Stadium but wasn't able to make much of an impact in the Redskins' 27-10 defeat to the Patriots.
Check out these top photos from the Washington Redskins' 2015 Week 9 matchup against the New England Patriots Nov. 8, 2015, at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.
This was a symptom of many variables – namely the fact that Jackson hadn't played in a game since injuring his left hamstring early in the team's season opener against the Dolphins.
Jackson caught three passes for 15 yards while quarterback Kirk Cousins targeted him six times.
"Haven't been out there in a while," Jackson said. "Gotta get back to used to seeing number eleven I guess, but tough one today. We had put ourselves behind a little bit, you know, a couple turnovers early on in the game, so just gotta figure out a way not to do that and guess we could give ourselves a better shot at winning."
His return to the field might have been sooner had he not tweaked his hamstring in practice before the Week 7 Buccaneers game. Near the end of Sunday's game, Jackson jogged off the field towards the sideline gingerly but didn't mention any issues after the game, a positive note moving forward.
Redskins coaches hoped that with Jackson's presence, the run game might find more success. In 2014, the team averaged 4.73 yards per carry when he was split outside and only 3.24 when he wasn't on the field. But with an early deficit, and Jackson still finding his rhythm, there wasn't a noticeable benefit right away as the Patriots held the Redskins to 37 yards on the ground.
All of that will take time as he gets back up to speed and becomes used to the pace of the offense.
"I think he's missed a lot of time," head coach Jay Gruden said. "No. 1, just getting lined up in the huddle and transferring the play calls to the field to the execution. It wasn't quite there for us. And we didn't have a lot of opportunities either really. And they had a good plan for him, but we just didn't make any plays, and he caught a couple balls late. But, we just made nothing really happen on offense unfortunately to give him some opportunities."
Jackson seemed aware of this, too. Though, he was on the field for 49 of the offense's 58 snaps, a good sign that promises to carry more explosiveness as the season progresses.
"I definitely will want [the ball] a lot more. You know, being able to be a big-play player and do some things to help my team win," Jackson said. "But, once again, being a big-play receiver, you don't always get the looks you want to get because the defense, the plays, the quarter, you never know how it goes. You have to stay ready."