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Mailbag: Will Morgan Moses start for the Redskins in 2014?

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Mailbag: Will Morgan Moses start for the Redskins in 2014?

I got so many good questions on Twitter and on the Real Redskins Facebook page that I decided to do a two-parter. Here's Part One from yesterday, let's get rolling to the rest of them.
@Rich_TandlerCSN what is the most exciting position battle for the #Redskins before the season starts? #RedskinsTalk

— ThePorchReport (@ThePorchReport) June 24, 2014
I think that the one that will play out in plain sight in Richmond and in the preseason games is the place kicker battle between Kai Forbath and Zach Hocker. Although Forbath has been solid on field goals in his year and a half in the NFL his kickoffs have left a lot to be desired. If Hocker can consistently boom long field goals at the Bon Secours training center and kicks off deep into the end zone he will give Forbath a run for his money. Among the "real" football players, I think there will be a lot of competition along the defensive line. I don't see any surprise cuts there at this point but they will battle it out for game day active status and playing time.

I don't see that happening to any great extent. They will let Morris do what he does best, run the football. Roy Helu and, eventually, Lache Seastrunk will catch passes. I will say that Morris probably will catch more than the nine he caught last year, perhaps enough to make the defense have to pay some attention to him. But don't look for it to become anything more than a very minor part of the offense.
@ConnorMelamed: @Rich_TandlerCSN Is there any chance Morgan Moses takes RT by week 1? #RedskinsTalk

— Connor Melamed (@ConnorMelamed) June 24, 2014
@Rich_TandlerCSN Every time Moses' comes up, Gruden goes out of his way to say how much work he needs. Is he really that bad? #RedskinsTalk

— Michael Church (@fft5305) June 24, 2014
Let's take both of the Moses questions at once here. I think that there's a slim chance that Moses starts against the Texans but I'm looking at him being the 2015 opening day starter. As far as what Gruden says about him, well, a third-round rookie offensive lineman needs a lot of work. It's simply a fact. On top of that, I get the impression that Moses is the type of player who needs to be pushed. Many rookies, high draft picks and undrafted free agents and everyone in between, come into the NFL without a clue as to the work ethic needed to be successful in the NFL. That doesn't mean they're "lazy", it means they need to take it to another level. I don't think Gruden wanted Moses to get comfortable during OTAs and minicamp, moving him from side to side and keeping the pressure on him with, among other things, his comments to the media.

I don't see any Week 1 surprises. Ryan Clark and Brandon Meriweather are the odds-on favorite to start the season at free and strong safety, respectively. I'll give Phillip Thomas a 20 percent chance of pushing Meriweather to the bench; Clark is safe. As far as Week 17, man, that's a long way off. Will they be resting their starters for the playoffs? Seriously, I'd say there is an 80 percent chance that Thomas has beaten out Meriweather for the starting job by then.
@Rich_TandlerCSN Haven't heard anything about Minnifield in OTAs or Minicamp. How is he doing? #RedskinsTalk

— Derek Childress (@Poker_Donkey) June 24, 2014
He hasn't really stood out in a good or bad way. Minnifield should be fully healthy; he had to deal with both microfracture surgery and a torn ACL as a rookie in 2012. The depth chart at CB has numbers but not a lot of high quality. There will be an opportunity for him to win a job in training camp, especially if he embraces the idea of playing special teams, something he didn't have much enthusiasm for after he made the 53-man roster last year. That got him a permanent spot on the game day inactive list.

Thanks for reading, Scott! Tell your friends. And I think you're close on the O-line. I just don't see Long starting over Chester at this point in time. He might before the season is out but I think Week 1 Chester survives.

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Need to Know: The early odds on what happens with Redskins and Cousins

Need to Know: The early odds on what happens with Redskins and Cousins

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, January 19, 98 days before the NFL draft.

Timeline

Days until:
NFL franchise tag deadline 42
NFL free agency starts 50
First Sunday of 2017 season 235

The coordinator search and more

As noted above, we have 42 days until the deadline for the Redskins to put the franchise tag on quarterback Kirk Cousins. The immediate future of the franchise is contingent this situation being handled correctly by the organization. It’s time to turn the attention and the $100 in imaginary casino chips towards what might happen with Cousins as the process unfold. We will revisit this from time to time as the various deadlines approach so consider this the early odds.

Sign before the tag deadline, $5—This seems unlikely after his rather cold response to my question immediately following the season-ending loss to the Giants when he said, “The ball’s not in my court.” He indicated that it’s up to the Redskins to tag him. It doesn’t look like he and his agent will have much of an inclination to sit down to any serious negotiations before that happens.

Let him go into free agency, $5—Yes, I know that this is out there but it makes no sense to take the chance of the possibility that he could walk with zero compensation. While there might be some logic in finding out what Cousins would be worth in a true free market in order to establish the basis for a fair contract the risk of behind left empty-handed is just too great.

Tag and trade, $20—This also has been discussed by various media types as a possibility. It would involve giving Cousins the non-exclusive franchise tag, which would let him go out and negotiate a deal with another team. The Redskins could then match that offer or choose to get compensation. The CBA calls for compensation of two first-round picks although the two teams may negotiate something less. The most frequently suggested trade partner is the 49ers and their soon-to-be head coach Kyle Shanahan but there are probably around half a dozen teams, maybe more, who could be interested. If the Redskins don’t think they will ever sign Cousins long term this could be the way to go.

Tag and sign by July 15 deadline, $30—This may be a little low for this possibility. Perhaps if the other options are off the table he will consider that he is a perfect match for Jay Gruden’s offense and that he might not be such a good fit elsewhere. There also is the possibility of injury or, for whatever reason, Cousins having a subpar season. Those thoughts could spur him to instruct his agent to get the best deal he can get in Washington.

Tag and play the season on the tag, $40—Right now, this appears to be the mostly likely scenario. They can afford the $24 million cap hit and it would get them one more year of his services. However, the prospects for him remaining in a Redskins uniform for 2018 and beyond would be very cloudy.

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In case you missed it

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

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3 of 4 Redskins named to Pro Bowl won't attend

3 of 4 Redskins named to Pro Bowl won't attend

Ryan Kerrigan, Jordan Reed and Brandon Scherff will skip next week's Pro Bowl in Orlando a team spokesman confirmed to CSN. All three players dealt with injuries late in the season, most notably Reed, and playing in the exhibition game is not in the cards. Trent Williams, however, is still slated to play in the game. 

Reed suffered a separated shoulder on Thanksgiving playing against the Dallas Cowboys. For the rest of the season, Reed played through significant pain and his production dipped.

Kerrigan played much of the season with an injured elbow and hurt his finger in the final game against the Giants. Scherff played with ankle pain and was listed on the injury report much of the season's final four games.

For Reed and Scherff, this year marked their first Pro Bowl. The recognition was deserved for both players, and shows that the guard and tight end are gaining national spotlight for their play.

Kerrigan played in the Pro Bowl following the 2012 season. He finished this year with 11 sacks, 2.5 short os his career high 13.5 in 2014. 

RELATED: 2017 NFL MOCK DRAFT 1.0

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