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Tandler's Tweetbag: When do the Redskins go back to work?

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Tandler's Tweetbag: When do the Redskins go back to work?

Here are some good questions I have received on Twitter (@Rich_TandlerCSN) that deserve a response of more then 140 characters. Feel free to hit me with questions any time.

From @skinsrockflair: Hi Rich. Have you heard anything on [cornerback Chase] Minnifield as far as rehab or expectations that he could play next year?

Normally we do not get rehab updates on players who are on injured reserve. While the doctors and trainers monitor the progress of the rehab process the coaches are not focused on players who will be unable to play this year. Unless a player happens to drop by the locker room while it is open to the media as Fred Davis did last week we just don’t get any updates. We will find out more about Minnifield when conditioning and OTA’s start in the spring.

From @P_Hazard: Will CB Pat Lee be a more likely target for Redskins than Stanford Routt?

The Raiders cut starting cornerback Patrick Lee in order to bring cornerback Ron Bartell off of the revocable IR list. Whenever a starting defensive back hits the market, Redskins fans ask about whether or not their team will be interested. And while it’s possible that the Redskins will take a look at Lee, who has played in 40 NFL games with eight starts in four NFL seasons with the Packers and Raiders, it would be surprising to see the Redskins sign him. They seem to be of the mind that while their secondary is bad they aren’t going to get any substantial help by singing players who were cut by bad teams. So, as they did with Routt, who was released by the Chiefs a couple of weeks ago, they are likely to bypass the opportunity to sign Lee.

From @AndyMoneybags: When does the team resume practice? The usual wed? That’s a lot of time off...

Certainly, the Redskins look like a team that could use some more work. Even if they need to rest their bodies, one would think they could benefit from additional film and meeting time. But a mental break from the game can be just as important as a physical break. And even if Mike Shanahan thought otherwise and wanted to work the team during the bye he couldn’t. The CBA requires five days off during the bye so they are off Wednesday through Sunday. They will report to Redskins Park tomorrow for meetings and perhaps a light practice (we don’t yet have a media schedule). They will be off on Tuesday, another CBA requirement, before starting preparation for the Eagles in earnest on Wednesday.

From Trey_DavisIII: hey Mr. Rich. What do you think the chances of Tanard Jackson coming back to the team this off season is? It would help.

I got a few questions about Jackson both about this year and next. And while the door isn’t closed to him returning to the Redskins it will be a very tricky path. Jackson can’t set foot in an NFL facility until August 30, 2013 at the earliest. He can apply for reinstatement then but there is no guarantee that he will be allowed to come back. So the Redskins would be foolish to rely on his return to fill a hole at safety. They will have to make other plans and if Jackson can return he might serve as added depth. Another possibility is that they may simply release him and clear his $700,000 salary off of the books.

                        


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Redskins bring former starting center back to active roster

Redskins bring former starting center back to active roster

The Redskins officially brought Kory Lichtensteiger back to the active roster, and while the move is now for depth, it could have other ramifications down the road. 

The move is on the NFL's transaction report for Saturday. To make room for Lichtensteiger, the team released defensive lineman A.J. Francis. 

Dealing with injuries up and down the line of scrimmage, Lichtensteiger's return could give the offensive front more flexibility. When Lichtensteiger got injured Week 3 and sent to the injured reserve, third-year pro Spencer Long stepped in and performed well at center. Last week in Arizona, Long sustained a concussion.

That injury opened the door for John Sullivan, who will start this week in Philadelphia with Long ruled out. Sullivan was brought in as a backup to Long once Lichtensteiger was put on IR. With Long now in the NFL concussion protocol, the Redskins need another center should Sullivan get hurt. Alas, Lichtensteiger's return from the IR. 

Left guard Shawn Lauvao also sustained an injured groin, and that's where things could get interesting. Long is capable of playing guard, as is Lichtensteiger in a pinch. Should Lauvao's injury persist, Lichtensteiger might be able to help there.

Against the Eagles, the plan certainly appears to be second-year man Arie Kouandjio starting in place of Lauvao. Kouandjio made one earlier start this season - Week 4 against Cleveland - and the results were mixed.

If Kouandjio stumbles and Lauvao needs more time, Lichtensteiger's return to the roster gives Jay Gruden and Bill Callahan more flexibility, especially when Long returns from injury.

In fact, once the team has Long, Lichtensteiger and Sullivan healthy, there could be a bit of a logjam roster-wise on the offensive line, but considering all the injuries, bumps and bruises that are part of O-line life by the last four games of the season, the Redskins staff likely won't mind figuring that out. 

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates or click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTunes, here for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

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Redskins vs Eagles Preview: 5 things to know as Washington gets desperate

Redskins vs Eagles Preview: 5 things to know as Washington gets desperate

Losers of two straight games and for the first time in a month outside of the playoff picture, a desperate Redskins squad travels to Philadelphia for a 1 p.m. game on Sunday. All the action kicks off on CSN with Redskins Kickoff at noon, but to get ready for the action, here are five storylines to watch:

  1. Getting back to good, or at least decent - Two weeks ago the Redskins seemed like a dangerous playoff squad with a strong offense and an improving defense. After two straight losses where Joe Barry's defense has given up 62 total points, the questions are mounting for Washington. Can the defense get stops on 3rd down? Generate a turnover? The good news for the Redskins is that the Eagles are struggggggling. Their offense has not score more than 15 points in three straight weeks. 
  2. Feed the fat one - After giving Rob Kelley just 28 carries in the last two games, Washington offensive coordinator Sean McVay owned up to the Redskins lack of run game, "I definitely feel like I could’ve been more patient on some of those early down and distances where you get a little bit pass-heavy. And that’s something that as a decision-maker and as a coordinator, I have to do a better job." In a Week 6 win Kelley and Matt Jones piled up more than 200 rush yards against the Eagles. The 'Skins offense likely won't feature Jones, but expect McVay to feed Fat Rob plenty on Sunday.
  3. Playing in pain - The Redskins offense features a number of dynamic playmaking threats, but arguably the best is tight end Jordan Reed. On Thanksgiving in Dallas, Reed separated his left shoulder, and though he finished that game he was forced out of action in Arizona. Expect Reed to be back Sunday, and expect Kirk Cousins to look for him early and often. On the season, Reed has more than 600 receiving yards and five TDs.
  4. If it ain't broke - Kirk Cousins has had more success against the Eagles than any other team in the NFC East. In four career games against Philly, COusins averages 336 yards per game passing to go with a 101.3 QB rating. He's thrown 10 touchdowns against the Eagles to just two interceptions. The biggest win of his career came last year when Cousins and the 'Skins clinched the NFC East title at Lincoln Financial Field. Cousins suceeds against the Eagles, and there's no reason it should stop Sunday. 
  5. Don't fly away - Rumors are starting to circulate that the Eagles would like to bring back DeSean Jackson next season. It's well known that Jackson will probably hit free agency after this season, and if Philly did pursuit their former playmaker, it would make sense. But between now and then, Jackson has another opportunity to torch his former team and help the Skins pursue a Wild Card bid at the same time. In his past two games, Jackson and COusins have connected on deep patterns, and there's little reason to tbink the same won't happen Sunday.

Numbers & Notes

  • If tight end Vernon Davis catches three passes he will become the 12th tight end in NFL history to record 500 career receptions.
  • With two more catches, wide receiver Jamison Crowder will set a single-season career high in receptions. He caught 59 passes in 2015.
  • If the Redskins win would mark five straight victories against the Eagles for the Redskins for the first time since a six-game winning streak in the series across the 1981-84 seasons.

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates or click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTunes, here for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!