RICHMOND–In the Washington Redskins’ 2012 season-opener, rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III fired a 16-yard completion to the team’s recently signed high-profile free agent, Pierre Garcon. And Garcon, who ran track in college, sped 72 yards to deliver Griffin’s first NFL touchdown and jumpstart the scoring in a 40-32 victory over New Orleans.
This weekend, well outside the spotlight’s glare and with nothing at stake, the quarterback and wide receiver resumed their collaboration at the Redskins’ training camp in Richmond, where Garcon rejoined practice after sitting out nearly two weeks with a strained hamstring.
They started by casually tossing a football back and forth before practice began in earnest, while their teammates stretched. And their rapport was soon evident, with Griffin and Garcon connecting on a touchdown throw during 11-on-11 drills.
“P’s a weapon,” Griffin said of Garcon afterward. “He’s a physical receiver. It’s good to have him out there. He brings a different mindset to the game and to the practice field, and we need him.”
Though the Redskins struggled to a 3-13 record last season, the 6-foot, 216-pound Garcon led the NFL in receptions, with 113 catches. That was 43 more than he had during his most productive season with the Colts during the Peyton Manning-era.
Garcon, who sat out Thursday’s preseason opener along with DeSean Jackson (foot), didn’t take part in Saturday’s full two-hour practice. Nor did Jackson, who spent much of the time icing and elevating his left ankle in a tent that opens onto the field.
“I felt good just getting back into it slowly,” said Garcon. “I’m working my way back into it; not trying to set the world on fire the first day. Just give it time, that’s the number-one thing. You don’t want to reinjure it because that’s just setting yourself back.”
Garcon said he hoped to gradually add to his workload as the week goes on. But a hamstring injury, he noted, is nothing to rush.