Redskins head coach Jay Gruden knows that Terrelle Pryor Sr. can "rip it a little bit," but wants to see how he's continuing to progress at wide receiver in 2017.
While the Washington Redskins landed quarterback-turned-wide receiver Terrelle Pryor Sr. on the first full day of 2017 NFL free agency, there likely aren't plans to use him in a Wildcat formation for the upcoming year.
That was the word from Redskins head coach Jay Gruden during last week's annual NFL League Meetings in Phoenix.
"I don't think so," Gruden said when asked if Pryor would play some quarterback this season. "We might, but I think he really wants to hone in on the receiver position. He obviously can let it rip a little bit, we'll see. We'll see what he wants to do, see how much we want to expand."
The Redskins only used the Wildcat formation once last season, unveiling it in the second quarter of Washington's Thanksgiving Day matchup with the Dallas Cowboys.
On 1st-and-goal at the five-yard line, rookie running back Robert Kelley took a direct snap for a play that lost a yard. Pryor, of course, started his NFL career at quarterback and even threw for nearly 1,800 yards and seven touchdowns in 2013. But after bouncing around the league trying to grasp a coveted backup quarterback spot, Pryor made a full-time move to wide receiver in 2015.
During the 2016 season, Pryor caught 77 passes for 1,007 yards and four touchdowns. He also attempted nine passes, but Gruden wants to keep Kirk Cousins under center.
"We've got a pretty good quarterback right now," Gruden said. "I think to take Kirk out and put another guy in is kind of silly. Because actually Kirk can do that. We'll see he's a great athlete I got to figure out ways to utilize him."
Check out these photos of Terrelle Pryor.
Pryor joined the Redskins after a season under Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson, who runs a similar offensive scheme to Gruden. With fundamental similarities, Pryor should benefit from going from Jackson's to Gruden's offense in his transition.
"There is a lot of familiarities with the concepts that we run," Gruden said. "We might call it a little bit differently but the route stems are very similar. That's one of the things that attracted me to him."
While the Redskins' expect big production out of Pryor this season opposite the likes of Josh Doctson and Jamison Crowder among other young wide receivers, Gruden also acknowledged Pryor's room for growth at a position he's still learning on the fly.
"Coming out of cuts and his stance, a lot of things he can work on," Gruden said. "That's the beauty of Terrelle is that he understands that and he accepts that. He is willing to learn and get coached by [wide receivers coach] Ike [Hilliard], the talent is there we just have to keep working on him."
But the Redskins also saw firsthand last season Pryor's special makeup, as the 6-foot-4 wideout kept Josh Norman's hands full in the first half with four catches for 42 yards and a touchdown.
"We actually had him doubled, and he ran right through the double coverage and scored the touchdown," Gruden said. "You just watch him running around, and you're like, 'Golly, who's that guy?' He's a good looking guy in a uniform that's for sure. Tall, long-legged guy. You can tell he's a great competitor. He was at Ohio State, and will continue to be."