After looking at the official list of cuts, the Redskins have 52 players on their roster.There is one spot open, perhaps for a player to be acquired in a trade or in a waiver claim.To be sure, there could be surprise or two still in waiting. And trades and waiver claims could further shake things up. But here is how it appears that it stands right now, with some quick analysis.SpecialistsIn (3):P Sav Rocca, LS Nick Sundberg, PK Billy CundiffThis was set earlier this week when Neil Rackers and Graham Gano were released and Cundiff was signed.DefenseDefensive backsCornerback (4): DeAngelo Hall, Josh Wilson, Cedric Griffin, Richard CrawfordSafety (5): Brandon Meriweather, Madieu Williams, DeJon Gomes, Reed Doughty, Jordan BernstineThe suspension of Tanard Jackson, who would have been one of the top three safeties, helped Bernstine land a spot. It is still somewhat odd that they are keeping four corners and five safeties and this is one of those areas where further moves could be made.LinebackersOutside (4):Brian Orakpo, Ryan Kerrigan, Rob Jackson, Chris WilsonInside (4):London Fletcher, Perry Riley, Lorenzo Alexander, Keenan RobinsonIt was thought to be a battle between Wilson and Markus White for the last roster spot and Wilson won it. Bryan Kehl also was a surprise release.Defensive lineIn (6): Stephen Bowen, Jarvis Jenkins, Adam Carriker, Kedric Golston, Barry Cofield, Chris BakerOffenseRunning backs(4):Roy Helu Jr., Evan Royster, Darrell Young, Alfred MorrisThe shocker of the day was the release of Tim Hightower. It was thought that the team would wait out until his knee, injured last October, got close to 100 percent.Tight ends(3):Fred Davis, Niles Paul, Logan PaulsenNo drama here after Chris Cooley was released on Tuesday.Wide receivers(7):Pierre Garon, Leonard Hankerson, Josh Morgan, Santana Moss, Aldrick Robinson, Brandon Banks, Dez BriscoeBanks will be more of a kick returner than a wide receiver so there are really six here. Briscoe beat out Anthony Armstrong for the last spot. Most thought Briscoe was the superior receiver during training camp and the preseason but there was a chance that Armstrongs special teams play could keep him on the roster.QuarterbacksIn (3):Robert Griffin III, Rex Grossman, Kirk CousinsRex Grossman was never, ever in any danger of being cut.Offensive lineIn (9):Trent Williams, Kory Lichtensteiger, Will Montgomery, Chris Chester, Tyler Polumbus, Josh LeRibeus, Jordan Black, Adam Gettis, Maurice HurtWhile none of the individual names here is a surprise the overall number is. The Redskins have kept eight offensive linemen the last two years. But they did get burned to an extent last year when a rash of injuries hit the line.
Five wins in a row – it’s almost hard to fathom considering how dire the Redskins season looked after losing to the Dallas Cowboys in September dropped Washington to an 0-2 record. Now, after winning four straight, the ‘Skins are firmly back in the NFC playoff picture and have the chance to tack on another win Sunday in Detroit. The game is indoors at Ford Field so weather won’t be an issue, kickoff is set for 1 p.m., but all the coverage starts on Redskins Kickoff at noon on CSN. These are the storylines we will be watching most:
- Hit the gas – In wins over the Cleveland Browns and Philadelphia Eagles, the Redskins got out to early 14-0 leads. Only the team then coughed up those leads, allowing both squads back into games that instead should have been blowouts. If Washington can build an early lead on the road will be a big advantage, but they need to continue to pile up points and not let the Lions hang around.
- Cage the Lions – Detroit’s offense is quite effective, in fact the Lions rank No. 12 in the NFL in points-per-game, three spots ahead of the Redskins. QB Matt Stafford is completing nearly 70 percent of his passes and has thrown 14 TDs through six games. The Redskins defense, however, has been nearly dominant in their last two games and hasn’t given up an offensive touchdown in the last seven quarters.
- No Reed option – Diagnosed with a concussion after the win in Baltimore, Redskins tight end Jordan Reed will miss the Lions game. He also missed the Eagles game, which saw the ‘Skins roll up nearly 500 yards of offense. Reed is a dynamic threat at tight end, but without him, veteran Vernon Davis stepped in against Philly and had two catches for 50 yards and a touchdown. Losing Reed is a blow for the ‘Skins, but they should be able to continue to pile up yards and points without him.
- Statistically speaking – There is an interesting disparity looking at the Lions and Redskins offensive stats. Detroit is scoring more points than Washington, yet the Lions are gaining significantly less yards per game and yards per play. Jay Gruden’s squad ranks No. 2 in the NFL in yards per play, Detroit ranks 14th. Washington is tied for 5th in yards per game, the Lions are 18th. Obviously, Sean McVay’s offense is moving the ball better than Detroit, but red zone issues have been consistent for the Redskins. The numbers point to an explosion of touchdowns, could this be the week?
- No (big) mistakes – Last week against the Eagles, the Redskins defense stifled Carson Wentz and held Philly’s offense mostly in check. The sole reason that game was close were big plays – a pick-six touchdown by Malcolm Jenkins after intercepting a Cousins pass and a kick return touchdown. Defensively, the Redskins have significantly improved at eliminating big plays. Against Detroit, special teams and the offense must focus on not giving up big plays or turning the ball over.
Numbers & Notes:
- Opposing offenses have been able to run on the Redskins, but Detroit comes into the game with just the 26th best running attack in the NFL.
- Ryan Kerrigan will make his 87th consecutive start on Sunday – tied for third most among active NFL linebackers. Kerrigan has never missed a start in his career.
- Against Philadelphia, Matt Jones ran for 135 yards, a career high, and the most Redskins rush yards since Alfred Morris went for 139 against the Vikings in November 2013.
- Dustin Hopkins has made 15 field goals this season – 1st in the NFC and tied for first in the NFL.
- On punt returns, Jamison Crowder and the Redskins are averaging 18.8 yards-per-return, which ranks 1st in the NFL.
- The Redskins offense ranks 1st in the NFL with the fewest amount of 3 & Out drives.
- If Kirk Cousins passes for 300 yards on Sunday, that will mark his 15th game with 300 passing yards, and he will take second place in Redskins history for most 300-yard games, moving past Joe Theismann.
Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates or click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTunes or press play below.
The NFL has fined Redskins tight end Vernon Davis $12,154 for his jump shot touchdown celebration against the Eagles.
Source says Vernon Davis was fined $12,154 for unsportsmanlike conduct - the penalty for shooting the ball like a jumpshot after his TD.— Mike Jones (@MikeJonesWaPo) October 21, 2016
So, if you're keeping score… Shooting a J after touchdown ($12k) costs you more than shooting an arrow into the crowd ($9k).— Mike Jones (@MikeJonesWaPo) October 21, 2016
The league had previously fined cornerback Josh Norman $9,115 for pantomiming shooting a bow and arrow after an interception. He said he'd try a beer drinking celebration this week.
On the day Davis was flagged excessive celebration, Jay Gruden told the media that he'd just gone over sample film of illegal celebrations with his players and didn't see anything resembling Davis' jump shot.
The Redskins have ruled Jordan Reed out again for Sunday's matchup with the Lions. Davis is expected to start in his place.
MORE REDSKINS: Doctson could return from IR in Week 15