One of the most surprising players in recent weeks has been veteran receiver Donte’ Stallworth. The Redskins gave up on him at midseason but due to injury had to re-sign him one week after parting ways. Since re-joining the team, Stallworth is making the most of a second opportunity.

In Saturday’s 33-26 loss to the Vikings, Stallworth had 59 yards and a touchdown on a season-high five catches. He now has 301 receiving yards this season — 255 of which came after the Redskins released him in November. He only missed one game then, though, as rookie Leonard Hankerson was placed on injured reserves a week later, on Nov. 14 and Stallworth re-joined the team. He has been a big contributor ever since.

“You can always do more,” said Stallworth, a ninth-year veteran. “For the most part, I think I’ve taken advantage of what I’ve been given.”

It’s the kind of opportunity he’s been waiting years for. He caught balls in only two of the Redskins’ first eight games. Stallworth had just two catches last season in Baltimore and sat out all of 2009 due to a league-imposed suspension.

His 301 yards, two touchdowns and 21 catches this season are the most Stallworth has posted since 2007, when he was a regular contributor with the New England Patriots. Set to become a free agent at season’s end, Stallworth’s productivity is coming at the right time.

He has a total of 190 yards in the past three games — which includes a 96-yard performance against the Patriots — marking his best three-game stretch since 2007.

“Even when I missed some time, I still felt like I could come out and help somebody win ballgames,” Stallworth said. “That’s all I’ve tried to do since I’ve been here.”