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Need to Know: Five key questions that will impact the Redskins' draft

Need to Know: Five key questions that will impact the Redskins' draft

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, April 17, 21 days before the NFL draft.

Nickel coverage

The draft does not happen in a vacuum. Future plans for veteran players impact draft day decisions. Here are the top five questions about their current team the Redskins need to answer before next month’s NFL Draft:

Do they plan on signing Brian Orakpo long term? If they are, there is no need to bring in a pass rusher with one of their top picks. If they are going to let him walk after playing under the franchise tag this year they should try to maneuver into position to take Orakpo’s replacement.

How long will Ryan Clark play? I have heard him say he’d like to go for two or three more years. He is, however, under a one-year contract and he will be 35 before the Redskins’ bye week this coming season. How soon will they need to replace him?

Will Kirk Cousins play out his rookie contract in Washington? Cousins has two years left on his rookie contract. If they don’t plan on trading him this offseason or next they are set at backup quarterback until 2016. But if the talk that they aren’t interested in trading him is just some sort of smokescreen, they will need to consider taking a late-round QB to develop as a backup.

Can Tyler Polumbus start for another year? Many Redskins fans will cringe at this thought but Chris Cooley recently said that he was the second-best offensive lineman on the team last year and that it wouldn’t be a disaster if he was the starting right tackle in 2014. If the Redskins agree they can take their time in trying to replace him. If they want to try to upgrade immediately, a high draft pick is the only option at this point.

How much of his contract will DeAngelo Hall play out? Hall will be 31 by the time the season is halfway over and nobody really expects him to play out all four years of the contract he signed before free agency started. His base salary jumps from $1.25 million this year to $4 million in 2015. Will a 32-year-old corner be worth that much? They can always use depth a cornerback but how much they need this year might depend on Hall’s future status.

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Timeline

—It’s been 109 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be about 143 days until they play another one.

Days until: First veteran minicamp 12; NFL Draft 21; Training camp starts 97

In case you missed it

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Report: Redskins to interview former Raiders defensive coordinator

Report: Redskins to interview former Raiders defensive coordinator

The Redskins have set up another interview with a candidate to fill their vacant defensive coordinator position.

According to the Washington Post, Jason Tarver, the defensive coordinator of the Raiders from 2012-2014, will meet with the organization. The date of the interview is not known.

Related: Redskins offensive coordinator resume: Matt Cavanaugh

Before joining the Raiders, Tarver coached in college for five years before the 49ers hired him as a quality control coach. He worked his way up to become the outside linebackers coach, a position he held from 2005-2010. Scot McCloughan was the GM of the 49ers while Tarver was coaching there.

After a year as a defensive coordinator in the college ranks at Stanford, Tarver was hired as the Raiders’ defensive coordinator. He was a defensive assistant for the 2015 49ers and he was out of football last season.

More Redskins: The Redskins week that was

The Redskins have announced interviews with former Browns head coach Mike Pettine and ex-Jaguars coach Gus Bradley. It was reported earlier today that they also will meet with Rob Ryan, most recently the Bills’ defensive coordinator.

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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Redskins plan to interview Rob Ryan for defensive coordinator, per report

Redskins plan to interview Rob Ryan for defensive coordinator, per report

Plenty of Redskins fans wanted the team to interview Rex Ryan for defensive coordinator.

Well, a report shows they aren't talking to Rex, but instead, his brother Rob, according to Albert Breer of MMQB

Rex Ryan's track record as a defensive coordinator is very impressive.

Rob Ryan's track record as a defensive coordinator is, uh, less impressive. 

In 12 seasons as a coordinator, first in Oakland and then with Cleveland, Dallas and New Orleans, Rob Ryan has two Top 5 finishes in yards allowed. He also has finished 31st out of 32 teams in the league in yards allowed three times.

Below is a chart from Pro Football Reference showing his defensive ranks from 2004 when he became coordinator in Oakland all the way through his last job as a coordinator in New Orleans in 2015.

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The results aren't pretty.

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It should be noted that in 2016, Rob Ryan served as assistant head coach in Buffalo on his brother Rex's staff.

That team's defense finished 19th in yards allowed. 

Gus Bradley and Mike Pettine have interviewed with the Redskins for their vacant defensive coordinator opening.

Washington is also reported to have reached out to Wade Phillips, who took the same position with the Rams, and Steve Wilks, who took the same position with the Carolina Panthers. Internally, outside linebackers coach Greg Manusky also seems to be under some consideration for the position, and a report last week linked former 49ers head coach Jim Tomsula with the Washington defense.

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