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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Still searching for a nose tackle, early depth charts

Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Still searching for a nose tackle, early depth charts

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, March 18, 40 days before the April 27 NFL draft.

Timeline

Days until:

—Offseason workouts begin (4/17) 30
—Redskins rookie camp (5/12) 55
—Redskins OTAs start (5/24) 67
—Franchise tag contract deadline (7/15) 119
—First Sunday of 2017 season (9/10) 176

The Redskins week that was

A look at some of the most popular posts of the week on CSNmidatlantic.com with some commentary.

Redskins' cap space dwindling but they have some options—It looked like the Redskins had a huge pile of cap space but Kirk Cousins’ franchise tag put a big dent in it and now their supply of available cash is dwindling. Since this was published the Redskins did add $3 million to their cap space so one option to create more is off the table. There will be some free agent options lower down the depth chart that they can add but they should focus their remaining resources on locking up Morgan Moses and Spencer Long, who are eligible for extensions.

Report: Cousins concerned about potential trade to Browns—The post right after this one on the most popular list was on a report that the Browns aren’t interested in Cousins but that other teams have inquired about a trade. The takeaway from the last few weeks of conflicting Cousins reports is that what teams and agents and players say is not necessarily in the interest of spreading the truth. Words are about trying to create leverage and send messages to the other side in negotiations. Letting the fans know what is really going on is low on the list of priorities when messages are chosen.  

RELATED: NFL Mock Draft Version 5.0

Bad grades for some Redskins FA additions—Evaluations from Pro Football Focus get paned as worthless in some circles. I’ve always thought that, like any one metric, PFF’s ratings and stats are useful if you don’t take them as the final word on a given player. Anyway, they liked the Terrelle Pryor and D.J. Swearinger acquisitions and they panned the two players signed on the D-line. What they miss is that Terrell McClain and Stacy McGee don’t have to be long-term solutions in Washington. If the Redskins can draft a couple of solid defensive linemen they could easily move on from McClain and McGee as post-June 1 cuts in 2018. Of course, given the team’s long-standing reluctance to draft defensive linemen early, that scenario is problematic.

Examining the Redskins updated depth chart—Defense—It’s too early to do a depth chart but that never stops me (I also drew up an offensive depth chart). Although much of it is in dry erase marker and not Sharpie, it is still useful to see how things are evolving. The one alarming thing that jumps out is that if the season started today the starting nose tackle would be Phil Taylor. The good news is that he’s a former first-round draft pick. The bad news is that he hasn’t played in an NFL game since 2014. And, yes, the topic will keep coming up until the Redskins draft some linemen and get a long-term solution at nose tackle. 

Despite need for D-linemen, Redskins cut Ricky Jean-Francois—Francois wasn’t a nose tackle but he was a reasonably effective end when he rotated into games. The team decided to cut him loose. The move saved the team $3 million in cap space and it also got rid of a player who was vocally critical of the organization in the wake of the firing of Scot McCloughan. While the move could be justified on the basis of productivity compare to his cap hit, his outspoken nature, especially recently, made the decision a whole lot easier for the Redskins.

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

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In case you missed it

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Top selling jersey in Virginia and Maryland is not a Redskin or Raven

Top selling jersey in Virginia and Maryland is not a Redskin or Raven

Virginia and Maryland may be Washington Redskins/ Baltimore Ravens country, but their fans are not buying their jerseys. That is at least for the month of May. 

NFLShop.com released their top jersey sales for May 2017 on Thursday morning and the un-retired Marshawn Lynch was the top seller for the nation in the 31-day span. Even if his return does not pay off on the field for the Oakland Raiders, it paid off in terms of sales. 

In the same release, NFL Shop revealed the top jersey per state in the same month and it was not a Washington Redskin or Baltimore Raven at the top of the list for Virginia and Maryland. Instead, it was Super Bowl LI MVP Tom Brady. 

Brady, a five-time Super Bowl champion, was the top seller in 17 different states, the most of any player.

The latter is not that surprising, but Brady owning Virginia and especially Maryland is. 

In terms of the Top 25 overall, there are no Redskins or Ravens making the list. Overall Brady was No. 2, followed by Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott. The first rookie, DeShaun Watson, came in at No. 5.

There may be a multitude of reasons for the Brady-love, aside from the typical bandwagon fans, but it does make one think which jersey are you confident in buying?

Other notable jersey sales:

#6 Derek Carr -- Oakland Raiders quarterback
#11 James Conner -- Pittsburgh Steelers rookie running back 
#17 Colin Kaepernick -- San Francisco 49ers (currently unsigned quarterback)
#25 Adrian Peterson -- New Orleans Saints running back

MORE REDSKINS: Statement on Kirk was a mistake, won't impact on-field performance

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Over/under: Redskins pass catchers in 2017

Over/under: Redskins pass catchers in 2017

Our offseason over/under predictions for the Redskins rumbles on.

Today we are predicting the numbers involving the Redskins pass-catchers.

Redskins receivers/tight ends over-under

The Redskins’ receiving corps was forced to undergo some changes after top wideouts DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garçon departed via free agency.

How will their replacements do?

How will the talented holdovers perform? Redskins Insiders Rich Tandler and JP Finlay go over-under on some Redskins pass catchers stats.  

RELATED: OVER/UNDER - KIRK COUSINS

WR Terrelle Pryor, 1,000 receiving yards

Tandler: I know that a lot of people, including Finlay, are looking for a huge year out of Pryor. I think he’ll do well, but a thousand yards is going to elusive. He did go over 1K last year with the Browns with terrible QBs throwing to him. But Pryor also had the benefit of being one of few viable receivers in Cleveland. That’s not the case here. He won’t get anywhere near the 140 targets he got last year. Under

Finlay: Not sure when I said a huge year for Pyror, that seems like Tandler throwing shade, but I do think he is capable of 1,000 yards. The quantity of targets will certainly drop, but the quality should be much greater. In today's NFL, 1,000 yards is no longer the benchmark it once was. The bulk of the league deploys a pass-first offense, and the Redskins definitely do. 25 wideouts went over 1,000 yards last season, including two on the Redskins. Over 

RELATED: WHO IS NEXT AT QB FOR THE REDSKINS?

WR Josh Doctson, 6.5 touchdown receptions

Tandler: When Kirk Cousins sees how well the 2016 first-round pick can get up and high-point the ball Doctson will immediately become the favorite red zone target. I’ve predicted as many as 10 TDs for him this year. That’s bold, perhaps crazy, but I feel safe going with at least seven. Over

Finlay: 10 TDs for basically a rookie wideout is nuts. You're talking Odell Beckham/Randy Moss production. Doctson does have great size and potential for the red zone, but I need to see before I believe. Only Jamison Crowder got to seven touchdowns in 2016, and that was with Kirk Cousins throwing for nearly 5,000 yards. Under

RELATED: OFF-FIELD MISTAKES WON'T IMPACT ON-FIELD RESULTS

WR Jamison Crowder, 1,000 receiving yards

Tandler: This is the safest bet on the board. His familiarity with Cousins will make him a security blanket when the quarterback gets in trouble. He’s learning and getting better; he ticked up almost 250 yards and 2.5 yards per catch between his rookie and second seasons. And Crowder is durable. Over

Finlay: I like this one. Crowder went for about 850 yards last season, a jump of about 250 yards from his rookie season. Another year with that improvement gets him past 1,000 yards with room to spare. Early last season, Crowder was the 'Skins best receiver. He posted more than 500 yards before the Redskins bye week. In the second half of the year, the focus shifted to DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garçon, which probably wasn't a coincidence as both players demanded the ball knowing they were headed for free agency. I expect Crowder to steadily produce all season in 2017. Over

RELATED: OFFER TO COUSINS NOT NEARLY ENOUGH

TE Jordan Reed, 12.5 games played

Tandler: Although we’re hesitant to make predictions about a player’s health, the fact is that this is the only variable for Reed going into the season. If he is on the field he will produce receiving yards and touchdowns by the bushel. Injuries, not defenses, are what slows him down. He skipped OTAs to spend more time strengthening his body and the results should show. But bad luck happens so this is a tough call. He’s due for some good fortune. Over

Finlay: Tandler is setting these totals with Vegas-like precision. This one is tough. In the last two seasons, Reed has played in 26 games, making 17 starts. I would argue the more important stat is starts, because that's when Reed is actually healthy. Last season, after separating his shoulder against the Cowboys on Thanksgiving, Reed tried to gut out a few performances against the Panthers and the Eagles. He was ineffective in both, yet those count for games played. In nine starts in 2015, Reed was a monster, putting up nearly 1,000 yards and 11 touchdowns. Starts are what matter, and the Redskins should hope for at least nine of them. Under