Which 2012 draft picks can help the Redskins through the cap crunch?

Which 2012 draft picks can help the Redskins through the cap crunch?
February 28, 2013, 11:00 am
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The Redskins have drafted 21 players in the past two years and 19 of them are still with the organization. With the possibility of some roster cuts and some free agents leaving it is time to examine the draft picks and see who might be ready to step up and start and who might be ready for an increased role. OnWednesday we looked at the 2011 draft class and today we look at 2012.

Already starters

From the 2012 draft class, Robert Griffin III (round 1) is the starting quarterback and Alfred Morris (6) is the running back.

Roles established

Kirk Cousins (4) will be the quarterback while Griffin is rehabbing his knee injury, no matter how long that takes and his backup when he returns.

Possible 2013 starters

Josh LeRibeus (3) played well at left guard late in the Week 17 Dallas game and for most of the Seattle playoff game when starter Kory Lichtensteiger went out with an ankle injury. Lichtensteiger is a free agent and LeRibeus will be a strong candidate to take his job if he departs.

Starting right tackle Tyler Polumbus is a free agent as is 2010-2011 starter Jammal Brown. That could open the door for Tom Compton (6) and Maurice Hurt (7th round 2011) to compete for the job. When Polumbus missed the Week 16 game against the Eagles it was Hurt who got the call. He was respectable in that game but Compton could have more upside.

2013 role players

Richard Crawford (7) was shaky when the played nickel back early in the year when Cedric Griffin was out with an injury. He was better late in the season when Griffin was serving a PED-related suspension. Crawford also had value as a punt returner, setting up the game-winning overtime field goal against the Ravens with a 68-yard return. The team could be confident enough in Crawford to let Griffin, a free agent, walk.

The Redskins drafted Keenan Robinson (4) in hopes that he could eventually develop into London Fletcher’s replacement. He was making some progress last year until a torn pectoral muscle he suffered on Thanksgiving in Dallas ended his season. Another year of as a situational substitute is likely in the cards for Robinson. After this season, Fletcher’s contract expires and then Robinson will either have to be ready or the team will have to find another solution.

Uncertain roles

It was somewhat surprising that Jordan Bernstine (7) not only made the opening roster but was active for the first game in New Orleans. Unfortunately he suffered a serious knee injury during that game and ended up on injured reserve. We’ll see if he can pick up where he left off.

Adam Gettis (5) was on the 53-man roster all season but he never made the game-day active list. It’s possible that the will compete with LeRibeus if Lichtensteiger leaves or he could spend another year on the bench.