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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Pressure on Gruden, Galette confident

Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Pressure on Gruden, Galette confident

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, June 24, 33 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp in Richmond on July 27.

Timeline

The Redskins last played a game 174 days ago; they will open the 2017 season against the Eagles in FedEx Field in 78 days.

Days until:

—Franchise tag contract deadline (7/17) 23
—Preseason opener @ Ravens (8/10) 47
—Roster cut to 53 (9/2) 70

The Redskins week that was

Pressure Points: Focus is on Jay Gruden like never before—So you lost two coordinators and your top two wide receivers? Well, the Redskins gave him a two-year contract extension because they think he can deal with problems like those. Gruden will be cut zero slack.

Post-minicamp 53-man roster projection, offense—Sure, there will be plenty of lip service about everyone having a chance of making the 53-man roster. But this cake is very nearly baked. But the real competition in training camp will be for the 10 practice squad spots. I picked 25 offensive players to make it and I’m confident that 23, maybe 22 of the picks will be right. There seems to be more questions on defense (roster projection here) but even on that side of the ball, few jobs are truly up for grabs.

Redskins in a no-lose situation with confident Galette—We haven’t seen Junior Galette practicing in the spring before. Two years ago, he wasn’t with the team yet and last year he was held out so he could rehab his torn Achilles. That means we don’t have much comparison to make but he did look good. Next step is to do it with the pads on.

Snyder 'THRILLED' with ruling that should protect Redskins name—The legal part of the fight to get the Redskins to change their name is over after the recent Supreme Court ruling. They will not lose their trademark protection, which would effectively force them to change the team. However, it seems likely that the political and social battle will go on.

Is a Redskins-Cousins deal not only possible but probable?—One analyst thinks that the Redskins have too much to lose to not get a deal done by July 17. I think he’s right but I’m not sure if I’ll go along with his odds. 

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerCSN and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Redskins depth chart preview: Wide receiver

Redskins depth chart preview: Wide receiver

Over the next few weeks, Rich Tandler will take another position-by-position look at the Redskins’ 2017 depth chart as the team enjoys some R&R ahead of training camp. Some positions are easy to handicap. Others have moving parts and, thus, are more complex.. So who’s in? And who’s in trouble?

Up today…

Position: Wide receiver

On the roster: Terrelle Pryor, Josh Doctson, Jamison Crowder, Maurice Harris, Ryan Grant, Robert Davis, Brian Quick, Kendal Thompson, James Quick, Matt Hazel, Levern Jacobs, Zach Pascal

Locks: Pryor, Crowder, Harris, Doctson

A year ago, the wide receiver group was being touted as one of the best, if not the best, in the NFL. This year, after the free agency departures of Pierre Garçon and DeSean Jackson, not so much.

Pryor will be the nominal No. 1, although it’s hard to call a guy who has one season as a receiver and just barely over 1,000 yards (1,007 to be exact) on his stat sheet a true No. 1. But that is what he wants to be and the Redskins will give him the opportunity to do so.

RELATED: True or false: Kelly Redskins leading rusher

We all know the trials and tribulations of Doctson’s rookie year. Should expectations for him be like those for a rookie? Few receivers start out of the gate quickly as it is a difficult position to learn. Or should more be expected out of him since he did spend a year attending meetings and getting in some practice time and some snaps in games? For his part, he is staying quiet and working hard, a good approach in his situation. He didn’t make any spectacular plays in offseason practices but he also didn’t have any major errors.

Crowder will stay in the slot for the most part, although he will occasionally move outside when Pryor and/or Doctson aren’t in the game. Along with tight end Jordan Reed, Crowder could benefit from being the familiar face that Kirk Cousins has to throw to. It would surprise nobody if Crowder ended up being the team’s leader in receptions and receiving yards.

We will find out this year if Harris is an undrafted free agent find or a failed project. He looked the part in his very limited opportunities (12 targets, 8 receptions) in 2016. But more opportunities do not always lead to more productivity. Harris dealt fine with low expectations as a rookie after he was promoted from the practice squad in Week 7. Now he has a shot at being the No. 4 receiver, the first one off the bench if someone gets injured. That’s a different world and the Redskins hope he is able to handle it.

On the bubble: B. Quick, Grant, Davis

The Redskins signed Quick hoping that he could be an experienced, inexpensive guy down the depth chart. He was disappointing in offseason practices and he will need a strong training camp to stay around.

MORE REDSKINS: Redskins 53-man roster projection, defense

Grant is a favorite of Jay Gruden’s. The coach constantly praises his work ethic and versatility. On the other hand, his production — nine receptions in 16 games last year — doesn’t get mentioned much.

Davis was a sixth-round pick out of Georgia State. He has a huge learning curve and it showed in offseason practices. If he makes the team he likely will spend many weeks as the inactive sixth receiver.

Long shots: Thompson, J. Quick, Hazel, Jacobs, Pascal

Of this group, Jacobs looked the best in OTAs and he might have an opportunity as there really isn’t a natural backup for Jamison Crowder as the slot receiver. But the realistic goal for any of these players is the practice squad.

Stay up to date on the Redskins! Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerCSN and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Carr extension has some good news for Redskins but Cousins deal will still cost big bucks

Carr extension has some good news for Redskins but Cousins deal will still cost big bucks

While we await the full details of Derek Carr’s contract extension we know enough to see what effect the deal will have on the Redskins’ efforts to negotiate a new deal with Kirk Cousins.

The Carr extension has been anticipated for months. The 2014 second-round pick was going into the final year of his contract. There were strong incentives for both sides to get a deal done. Absent a deal, Carr was looking at going through the risks of the NFL season on a salary $1.1 million. The Raiders faced starting the Redskins-Cousins style franchise tag dance with Carr in 2018.

RELATED: True or false: Kelly Redskins leading rusher

It also seemed inevitable that Carr would become the highest-paid player in the game. He got there with a deal that has an average annual value (AAV) of $25 million per year in new money, $271,000 per year more than Andrew Luck got a year ago. That aspect of the deal, therefore, will not have much of an impact on Cousins. Since an AAV of around $25 million was expected, it has been baked into any talks that have taken place so far.

The Redskins may point out that Carr’s deal was an extension that leaves his 2017 salary of $1.1 million intact. That means that Carr is committed to the Raiders for six years for a total of $126.1 million in compensation, an average of a shade over $21 million per year. If the team does that, however, Mike McCartney, Cousins’ agent, likely will laugh it off. The difference is leverage. Cousins is guaranteed $24 million this year compared to Carr’s $1.1 million salary prior to the extension. The starting points are apples and oranges.

However, the Redskins could legitimately look elsewhere for a point that might work in their favor. Carr’s deal contains only (only?) $40 million fully guaranteed at signing and $70 million in total guarantees, counting injury provisions. Compare that to Luck getting $47 million fully guaranteed at signing and a total of $87 million in guarantees.

So, the bar for guaranteed money in a big QB deal went down, not up. The Redskins will add this into their calculations in their offer.

MORE REDSKINS: Redskins 53-man roster projection, defense

But, again, you can’t forget the $24 million in fully guaranteed money that Cousins already has in hand. He isn’t going to agree to a multiyear deal that pays him only (only?) an additional $16 million in full guarantees.  

While it’s good to have comparable contracts to use in negotiations, each situation is unique. Cousins’ leverage sets him apart from Carr so it wouldn’t be surprising to see him surpass the Raider in terms of total and guaranteed money even though Carr is younger and generally thought to be a notch or so better than Cousins.

The Redskins will try to grasp on to any data point they can to justify paying Cousins as little as they can. But that might save them a few hundred thousand here and there. If they want to keep Cousins they are going to have to be prepared to pay a lot of money and guarantee a lot of it up front.

Stay up to date on the Redskins! Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerCSN and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.