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20 questions in 20 days 15Can Hall become an elite playmaker?

20 questions in 20 days 15Can Hall become an elite playmaker?

By Rich Tandler and Tarik El-BashirCSNwashington.com20 questions in 20 daysAs we count down to the first game of the Redskins season, Tarik El-Bashir and Rich Tandler are going to be looking at some of the big questions facing the team and attempting to look into their crystal balls and answer them.Question 16:Can DeAngelo Hall become an elite playmaker?The background:In 2010, Hall was personally responsible for the two of the Redskins six wins. Just before halftime in the season opener against Dallas got a strip, recovery, and touchdown return for the Redskins only TD in in their 13-7 win. And later in the season in Chicago he picked off four Jay Cutler passes and returned one of them 92 yards for the go-ahead points in Washingtons 17-14 win. But last year he picked off just three passes, none of them particularly meaningful. The Redskins are putting him in the slot corner position in hopes that he can make plays like he did in 2010.Tandler:Hall has said that he hopes to be able to play like the Packers Charles Woodson in his new position. In the last three years, Woodson has intercepted 18 passes, forced 10 fumbles, recovered two fumbles and has scored five touchdowns. The Redskins would be happy with even a nice percentage of that production. Hall is the second-highest paid player on the team and since hes not a shutdown corner he has to create value for himself in the takeaway department. His ability to do so may not be up to him. If Robert Griffin III can put some life into an offense that has been largely dormant for yearsan offense more like the one Woodson plays withHall will be able to afford to gamble for takeaways and the big plays will come.El-Bashir:A week into training camp, Hall told reporters: I'm probably not a great corner, but I'm a great football player. To go in the slot gives me a chance to be a football player. Theres a lot of truth in that candid assessment, and its precisely why secondary coach Raheem Morris intends to use Hall on the inside rather than outside in coverage this season. In theory, the move will emphasize Halls strengths (athleticism, instincts) while deemphasizing his biggest weakness (one-on-one coverage). Whether it works remains to be seen. Hall has only two tackles in parts of two exhibition games and hasnt put himself in position for an interception. As his comfort level grows, though, the team hopes hell pickoff five or six passes and return to the Pro Bowl he showed in 2010.20 questions in 20 days20 Aug.20Will Jammal Brown play this year?
19 Aug.21Will Chris Cooley make the team?
18 Aug. 22Can Brandon Meriweather get he job done at safety?
17 Aug. 23Is Garon a No. 1 receiver?
16 YesterdayCan Trent Williams got from good to great?
15 TodayCan DeAngelo Hall be a defensive playmaker?
14 TomorrowCan Santana Moss regain his old form?

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Impossible to probable? Draft day slide could land Redskins a steal

Impossible to probable? Draft day slide could land Redskins a steal

For months Alabama defensive lineman Jonathan Allen was widely considered a lock to land in the top five of the 2017 NFL Draft. There was even some argument if Allen could not oust Myles Garrett from the overall No. 1 spot.

Now, just days before the NFL universe will gather in Philadelphia for Thursday's draft, it appears injury concerns could push Allen not just out of the Top 5, but out of the Top 10. 

And that could be great news for the Redskins.

Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com released his latest Mock Draft on Tuesday, and the personnel scout has Allen landing with Washington at the 17th pick. From NFL.com:

Allen could slide a little bit based on some medical concerns. He would be a steal at this point in the draft.

Allen at 17 represents an absolute steal. Many Redskins fans are optimistic that off-field red flags could send fellow Alabama defender Reuben Foster to the 'Skins at 17. For many weeks, Foster was projected to go in the Top 10, or at least the Top 15.

While Foster would be a great value for Washington, he will also enter the NFL in the substance abuse program after a diluted urine sample at the NFL Combine. That will give teams real pause, understandably.

Allen enters the league with no baggage, outside of possible issues with his shoulders, including possible concerns about arhtritis. With 22.5 sacks in his last two seasons at Bama, not to mention winning one national championship and playing for another, Allen has the exact pedigree teams dream of taking in the draft. The 'Bama big man has explained that doctors don't expect any issues with his shoulders for at least 15 years, likely well after his NFL career ends.

Add to that his 6-foot-3, 286 lbs. frame, Allen is the exact force the Redskins need to boost their defensive line. And not for nothing, he grew up about 10 minutes away from Redskins Park in Ashburn, so this would be a true homecoming story.

If Allen lasts to the 17th pick, the Redskins need to sprint - not jog, not run, sprint - to the podium and make the selection. It's rare that need and best player available sync up, but this could be that scenario. 

<<<LOOKING AT REDSKINS DRAFT PROSPECTS>>>

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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Will Christian McCaffrey last until Redskins pick at 17? Oddsmakers weigh in

Will Christian McCaffrey last until Redskins pick at 17? Oddsmakers weigh in

Certain players always shoot up projections in the weeks and months leading to the NFL Draft.

This year, Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey is one such player.

After the college football season ended four months ago, McCaffrey likely slotted as the third running back off the board behind LSU's Leonard Fournette and Florida State's Dalvin Cook. Now, most mock drafts suggest McCaffrey will come off the board after Fournette, and a few suggest the Cardinal runner could even leapfrog the former Tigers back. 

Like most things football-related, oddsmakers can offer some insight.

Released this week, Bovada.lv listed odds on draft position for Fournette and McCaffrey.

RELATED: LATEST 2017 NFL MOCK DRAFT

NFL DRAFT - Draft Position - Leonard Fournette

Over     4          -150     (2/3)

Under   4          +110     (11/10)

NFL DRAFT - Draft Position - Christian McCaffrey

Over     9.5        -150     (2/3)

Under   9.5        +110     (11/10)

Based on those numbers, it's clear Fournette still has the edge as the first RB off the board. That's not a surprise.

It is slightly a surprise that McCaffrey is expected to last until the 10th pick, or even later. Much speculation connects McCaffrey to the Carolina Panthers with the 8th pick, as the speedy runner would be a great option for Cam Newton to catch balls out of the backfield. 

More interestingly, if McCaffrey does not get picked by the Panthers, it's easy to see him dropping to at least the 14th pick when the Eagles make a selection. The teams between Carolina and Philly are largely set at RB. At No. 9 the Bengals have Jeremy Hill, at No. 10 the Bills have LeSean McCoy, at No. 11 the Saints just signed Adrian Peterson, at No. 12 the Browns have Duke Johnson and a slew of other needs, and at No. 13 the Cardinals have arguably the best pass catching RB in the NFL in David Johnson. 

Again, these are just odds. McCaffrey can certainly still be picked 8th by Carolina, or perhaps even earlier by another team. 

It is interesting, however, that the Eagles present the first true natural landing spot if McCaffrey drops from the Top 10. After the Eagles, the Colts and Ravens at 15 and 16 respectively, could make sense for the talented back as well.

All of which means it still seems unlikely for McCaffrey to make it to 17 for the Redskins to select. Though based on oddsmakers, he's not the Top 10 lock some are suggesting. 

One other note: Bovada's oddsmakers strongly expect at least three running backs to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft.

The odds are overhwelming (-$500) that more than 2.5 backs go in the first round, so expect Cook to still hear his name called Thursday night. 

RELTAED: LOOKING AT REDSKINS DRAFT PROSPECTS

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!