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Need to Know: 5 thoughts on the state of the Redskins after Week 2 of OTAs

Need to Know: 5 thoughts on the state of the Redskins after Week 2 of OTAs

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, June 8, nine days before the start of Redskins minicamp.

Nickel coverage

With Week 2 of OTAs is in the books and here are five thoughts on the state of the Redskins.

—The Redskins carried eight offensive linemen last season—the five starters, swing tackle Tom Compton, and interior backups Josh LeRibeus and Adam Gettis. I think they’ll carry at least nine this year. “Depth is very important at every position, but probably none more important than the offensive line because offensive line people get dinged up quite a bit,” Jay Gruden said on Wednesday. Where will the additional roster spot come from? That remains to be seen.

—After two years of rarely seeing Robert Griffin III speaking to the media anyone other then behind a podium or in some other controlled press conference environment it was odd to see him holding court with the media out near the practice field like most players do (as in the picture with this post). I’m not sure which Griffin prefers but he seemed very relaxed in the less formal setting. This probably doesn’t mean a whole lot in the grand scheme of things but it’s a sign that things are more normal around Redskins Park.

—I talked to DeSean Jackson for the first time last week. Not that it matters, but I don’t think he’ll become a media favorite. He was very polite but very vanilla. But the important thing is for him to get it done on the field. By the way, if I was forced to guess I think he’ll be very limited in his participation in OTAs this week and will be full go for minicamp the following week. And, no, it’s nothing to worry about for the long run.

—In Richmond yesterday, Jay Gruden talked about the Patriots coming to town in August for three days of joint practices there prior to their preseason game at FedEx Field. He said that he’s not sure how much Griffin would be able to learn from Tom Brady since they wouldn’t be facing each other. However, Griffin should be able to get quite an education going up against Darrelle Revis, who is (sorry Richard Sherman) the best cornerback in the business. It will be a rare opportunity for a quarterback to dissect how Revis Island operates over an extended period of time. It will be interesting to see who gets the better of whom.

—The two punters on the team, Robert Malone and Blake Clingan, have kicked some during the OTAs that have been open to the media but neither has made much an impression. Between the two I’d have to say that Malone, who has some NFL punting experience, is the favorite. But there is a good chance that a player named “none of the above” ends up punting against the Texans in Week 1. If neither is getting the job done in the preseason, a veteran punter could be pulled off of the street.

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Timeline

—It’s been 161 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be 91 days until they play the Texans in their 2014 season opener.

Days until: Minicamp starts 9; Training camp 46; Redskins @ Eagles 105

In case you missed it

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The Final Countdown: Eli Manning goes deep for the Redskins 7th worst play of the year

The Final Countdown: Eli Manning goes deep for the Redskins 7th worst play of the year

As should be expected when a team goes 8-7-1, there were plenty of good moments and a lot of frustrating times during the Redskins’ 2016 season. Over the next couple of weeks, Redskins Insiders Rich Tandler and JP Finlay will take detailed looks at the 10 best plays of 2016 and, to present a more complete picture of the season, the 10 worst.

No. 7 worst play of 2016

Giants at Redskins, Week 17

4:02 left in Q4, Giants ball 1st and 10 at their own 31, game tied 10-10

Eli Manning pass deep left to Tavarres King pushed ob at WAS 25 for 44 yards (Will Blackmon).

Related: The Redskins week that was

Tandler: It looked like the Redskins were on the verge of saving their season. They were down 10-0 in the third quarter but they battled back to tie it up in the late going. But after lulling the Redskins defense to sleep with running plays and short passes, Manning launched one deep down the left sideline. King, who had one reception for six yards on the season coming into the game, had a step on cornerback Greg Toler and he hauled in the pass for 44 yards. Four plays later Robbie Gould kicked a 40-yard field goal to give the Giants the lead.

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Finlay: In a terrible game that led to many more questions than answers for the Redskins, this play was just a huge, huge disappointment. Washington fought back to tie up a game that they had largely been outplayed in, particulrly in the first half. Remember, the Giants had nothing to play for while for the 'Skins, a win would put them in the playoffs. The New York offense was laregly nonexistent in the second half of this game, as it became obvious Eli Manning did not want to get hit. And still, the embattled Redskins defense gave up a long pass play to a dude that had contrbuted basically nothing all season. 

10 best plays countdown

10 worst plays countdown

RELATED: 2017 NFL MOCK DRAFT 1.0

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN and @Rich_TandlerCSN 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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Report: One team Redskins need to watch out for when it comes to Kirk Cousins this offseason

Report: One team Redskins need to watch out for when it comes to Kirk Cousins this offseason

Mike Shanahan likes Kirk Cousins, both as a person and as a quarterback. The former Redskins coach has made no secret about that. Luckilly for the 'Skins, especially with Cousins staring at free agency, Mike Shanahan is no longer coaching in the NFL.

His son Kyle, however, seems highly likely to take over as San Francisco 49ers head coach. And soon.

Kyle Shanahan currently serves as the offensive coordinator for the Atlanta Falcons, and once their playoff run ends, most expect Shanahan to be named Niners head coach. 

Why should Washington fans care? Allow ESPN's Adam Schefter to explain:

Kyle Shanahan is set to become the San Francisco 49ers' head coach after Atlanta's season ends. San Francisco needs a quarterback as much as any other team in the league. If Cousins is available, the 49ers would pursue him as hard as they've pursued Shanahan.

Even if Washington tags Cousins, San Francisco could attempt to pry him loose in a trade with a package that could include this year's No. 2 overall draft pick. And if Washington doesn't want to deal now, it could have issues later.

This news should not be a shock to Skins fans, but it should be taken seriously. Remember, Kyle Shanahan was part of the Washington organization when Cousins was drafted and the duo worked together in 2012 and 2013. Most quarterbacks would love to run Shanahan's No. 1 ranked offense from Atlanta, and the guess here says Cousins would probably jump at the opportunity. 

Still, much must be worked out.

While some in the Washington front office might have questions about what the long-term value should be in a Cousins contract, the team still has some control. They can place the franchise tag on Cousins this season, like they did last season, and work until mid-summer on a multi-year deal. Or Cousins can again play on a franchise tag in 2017, like he did in 2016 and passed for nearly 5,000 yards.

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What makes Schefter's report the most interesting is the mention of the No. 2 overall pick. Observing the Redskins in 2016, it became obvious the team needs more impact players on defense, and with the second overall pick combined with their own 17th pick and eight more after that, that could deliver an immediate boost. 

Whatever boost a package of draft picks might bring in will be hard pressed to match the production of Cousins. Finding a starting quarterback in the NFL is exceptionally hard, and while Cousins has shown flashes of a special player, he has certainly confirmed he is a capable player in two seasons at the helm of Jay Gruden's offense.

Scot McCloughan and the Redskins brain trust have a few more weeks before free agency, and with it, the deadline to again place the franchise tag on Cousins. It's nearly impossible to see a scenario where Cousins hits the open market this season, but if the No. 2 overall pick comes into play, other scenarios start to seem more possible. 

RELATED: 2017 NFL MOCK DRAFT 1.0

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!