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Need to Know: 5 notes and quotes on the three newest Redskins

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Need to Know: 5 notes and quotes on the three newest Redskins

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, May 10, six days before the Redskins’ hold their rookie minicamp.

Nickel coverage

Five quotes and notes about the three newest Redskins:

G Spencer Long is coming off of a knee injury that ended his 2013 season prematurely. The injury was to his left PCL and MCL and his recovery is doing well. “I’m just ready to hit the ground running for rookie minicamp next week.”

OLB Trent Murphy has large hands. In fact, at 11 1/8 inches he had the biggest hands measure at the NFL Combine. “I use my hands really well against offensive linemen,” he said. “If you talk to any hat I’ve pass rushed against, they’ll talk about how good my hands are and how they can never punch or get a strike on me.”

Murphy occasionally lined up with his hand in the dirt at Stanford but he prefers to be standing up at the snap. “I guess it depends on the situational down or what scheme they’re in at the moment, but as like a stand up two-point outside backer, putting my hand down and sealing that edge, is where I’d like to be.”

OT Morgan Moses on his pre-draft talks with Jay Gruden: “We had good conversations, just sitting there and talking about football, but really just connecting on a level outside of football. With the additions that the Redskins have, I feel like it’s going to be a great year. I just want to get in there and start working right now.”

Jay Gruden on competition on the offensive line: “I think all great teams will have competition at every position and that’s what we are trying to build here. We are not discounting anybody. We are happy with the guys that we acquired in free agency. We are happy with the guys that have played here and done a lot and accomplished a lot for the Redskins. So we are not penciling anybody as starters, but we are trying to provide ourselves with great competition day one of training camp and may the best man win."

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Timeline

—It’s been 132 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be 120 days until they play the Texans in the 2014 season opener.

Days until: Rookie minicamp 6; Training camp starts 74; Preseason opener Patriots @ Redskins 89

In case you missed it

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Goal to go situations another problem area for Redskins' defense

Goal to go situations another problem area for Redskins' defense

In the third quarter of the Redskins’ Week 3 game against the Giants, New York drove to a first and goal at the Washington 10. A Trent Murphy sack and two incompletions later, Josh Brown came in and kicked a field goal.

Since then, opponents have had goal to go situations 12 times. They have scored touchdowns on every one of them.

The stop against the Giants was one of just two all year. They had one against the Cowboys in Week 2. Their opponents’ goal to go success rate is 90.5 percent. That’s the second worst in the NFL.

The failures have been costly. On Sunday, the Cardinals recovered a Kirk Cousins fumble and returned it to the Washington 10. The Redskins led 13-10 at the time and coming out of that situation with the game tied would have been large. But on third and goal at the six Carson Palmer hit Michael Floyd with a touchdown pass and the Cardinals had both the lead and the momentum.

Opponents usually haven’t had to work that hard. Teams have run 21 plays in goal to go and they have 10 touchdowns.

On Thanksgiving Day, the Cowboys got to goal to go three times. A stop on any one of them would have been a boost to the Redskins and would have changed the dynamic of the game. But Dallas was three for three.

The goal to go problems are a subset of the Redskins’ problems with red zone defense in general. Opponents have scored touchdowns on 27 of 40 red zone trips, a 67.5 percent success rate that puts the Redskins 30th in the NFL.  

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NFC East Update - Where everybody is losing except the Cowboys

NFC East Update - Where everybody is losing except the Cowboys

The NFC East was a beast for a while, but in recent weeks, the division is fading. All the teams outside of Dallas lost this weekend, and losing streaks are popping up throughout the I-95 Corridor. Here's the NFC East update:

  1. The Minnesota Vikings gave the Dallas Cowboys all they could handle last Thursday night, and yet, the Cowboys won 17-15. Dak Prescott was not impressive in Minneapolis, but Ezekiel Elliott was and the Cowboys defense did just enough to slow the Vikings terrible offense. At 11-1, Dallas has clinched a playoff berth, and with a date in New York this Sunday night, Jerry Jones' crew has a chance to avenge their only loss of the year, which came in Week 1 to the Giants.
  2. It seemed expectations met reality for the New York Giants last Sunday in Pittsburgh. Ben McAdoo's team had won six games in a row, but largely, faced poor competition. In their first tough test since the leaves started falling, Eli Manning's offense could not get going and the Giants fell to 8-4, still in possession of the first NFC Wild Card spot. Even on their win streak, the Giants didn't pass many eye tests. Beat Dallas on Sunday night and all that changes.
  3. Two weeks ago the Washington Redskins were one of the hottest teams in the NFL. Winners of two straight and with a surging Kirk Cousins, the Redskins marched to Dallas on Thanksgiving and gave the Cowboys a real test. Despite the loss, Washington still held its spot with the second NFC Wild Card. After a deflating loss in Arizona, now the 'Skins are on the outside looking in of the playoffs. Good news for Jay Gruden and company: The team can get right back in the thick of things this week in Philly, and the remaining four-game schedule looks advantageous. 
  4. While the Redskins have lost two in a row and are in danger of falling out of the playoff race, the Philadelphia Eagles have lost three in a row and look to be falling apart. Rookie QB Carson Wentz is devoid of offensive weapons to work with and the Eagles have been outscored 85-42 in their last three games. Philly can get their first NFC East win this week with the 'Skins visiting, but it will take a different effort than they've shown in the last month.

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