With Alex Smith coming in as the new quarterback, Washington’s offensive philosophy will certainly change. Smith is notorious for shunning the deep ball in favor of safer, lower-risk throws and limiting mistakes. Among the receivers on Washington’s roster, Smith will probably gravitate towards the likes of Jamison Crowder and Chris Thompson out of the backfield.
Pettis fits perfectly in this system, as he is used to catching passes at or near the line of scrimmage. He is not as fast as a Crowder or a Thompson, but he has the run-after-catch ability to turn five yards throws into 20 yard gains.
The Redskins were the sixth-worst team in the NFL returning punts last season. Pettis could provide consistent big play potential, and supply Alex Smith’s offense with consistently better field position than Cousins’ offense had last year.