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Redskins to ride 'hot hand' between Pryor, Doctson

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  • By Jeremy Bergman NFL.com
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Terrelle Pryor came to the nation's capital on a one-year deal this offseason with hopes of being a bona fide No. 1 receiver finally catching balls from a franchise quarterback. Halfway into the season, things have not gone as planned.

Pryor saw 11 targets in his first game with the Skins, but has since averaged around 4.4 targets and 2.4 catches per contest. His latest outing was his least involved of the campaign, a two-catch, 14-yard dud in Washington's Monday night loss to the Eagles.

A more telling sign of Pryor's growing irrelevance in the Redskins offense: Pryor was on the field for only 30 offensive snaps (47 percent), narrowly edging out Ryan Grant and falling way behind second-year wideout Josh Doctson.

Is Jay Gruden demoting the under-performing receiver, as Pryor's snaps and targets suggest? According to him, it depends on the game script.

"We'll see how it goes moving forward," Gruden told reporters Wednesday, per ESPN. "Right now we wanted to get Josh in there a little bit more and see how he did. Josh did some good things, some things we need to clean up, same with Terrelle every week. Just going to continue to coach those guys up, try to play the hot hand, play the guys who are fresh and go from there."

The "hot hand" comment means Washington has a competition on its hands at the X receiver position. Gruden elaborated that it is unlikely they would move Doctson, the shorter target at six-foot-2, over to Jamison Crowder's Z position.

None of Washington's wideouts are on pace to eclipse 600 yards receiving. So on an offense dictated by Chris Thompson, the do-it-all third-down back, no receiver is safe, but no one is doomed. Instead, Pryor and the Redskins' air attack are in a holding pattern.

"It's not like we're losing faith in anybody," Gruden said. "We have faith in all our receivers to win one-on-one matchups and run the right coverage, run the right routes and all that stuff and make plays when the ball is distributed to them.

"It's just a matter of trying to get everybody happy here. It's hard. They're all worthy of playing, but they all have to wait their turn and be patient and when their number is called, produce."

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