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Need to Know: Five possible Redskins cap casualties

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Need to Know: Five possible Redskins cap casualties

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, January 3, 67 days before the start of free agency.

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It’s a fact of life that players get cut during the offseason in order for a team to create more cap space. The presence of a new coaching staff can make for even more cap casualties. Here are five players the Redskins could consider releasing in order to create more cap room (or just to save money):

1. DE Stephen Bowen has a $4.4 million salary and a $7.02 million cap number. He ended the season on injured reserve with a knee injury after being hobbled with another knee injury in the latter part of the 2012 season. He is a team leader but his productivity does not justify his cap number. Cap savings: $1.98 million

2. G Chris Chester went from being an asset on the line in 2012 to being a liability last year. The team can find someone to do the job at right guard for less than his $3 million salary and $4.3 million cap number. Cap savings: $2.7 million

3. It’s tough to release an injured player but the Redskins face a dilemma with DE Adam Carriker. It’s still not certain that he will be able to play this season after missing last year and most of 2012 with a quad injury. It’s tough to commit a $4.7 million salary and $6.76 million in cap space to a player in his situation. Cap savings: $3.24 million

4. In the grand scheme of the NFL salary cap, $1.36 million for a player isn’t a whole lot of money. But P Sav Rocca was 29th in gross punting average and dead last in net average. Someone much younger (Sav is 40) and cheaper could get that done. Cap savings: $1.2 million

5. Again, we’re not talking about a huge amount of money here but it is hard to envision OT Tyler Polumbus starting at right tackle in 2014. And you could probably find a backup for less than the $1 million he is slated to make. Cap savings: $1 million

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Stat of the day

—In 2012 the Redskins gained 6.2 yards per offensive play, tops in the NFL. This year they averaged 5.3 per play, 18th.

Timeline

—On this date in 2001, Marty Schottenheimer signed a four-year contract to become the Redskins’ head coach

—Days until: NFL free agency 67; 2014 NFL Draft 125; 2014 Opening Sunday 247

In case you missed it

Redskins casting a wide net in their coaching search

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Final Redskins seven-round mock draft: Defense first, a surprise in the third

Final Redskins seven-round mock draft: Defense first, a surprise in the third

We’re a day away from the start of the NFL draft and all the questions surrounding the Redskins’ intentions will start to get answered when they go on the clock at about 10 p.m. on Thursday.

[More Redskins: Full Redskins Seven-Round Mock Draft]

Speaking at the team’s annual pre-draft news conference, Scott Campbell, the team’s director of college scouting, stuck with the company line when he was asked about making picks based on team needs.

“I’m going to frame the answer, and the age-old answer of ‘I’m going to take the best player available,’” he said. “And if that serves your needs, that’s a bonus.”

It would be a big “bonus” for the Redskins if a defensive lineman who can rush the passer and stuff the run was the best player on the board when their first-round pick comes up at No. 17. But it doesn’t look like the board will play out that way. That’s OK because the Redskins have plenty of needs.

In fact, it’s not hard to do a mock draft for the Redskins because they have needs at virtually every position. Certainly, some needs are more urgent than others. But once you get past the first couple of rounds there is enough doubt at each position, whether it’s immediate depth or possible free agency holes in 2018, to get that need “bonus” with every pick.

Campbell said that this is a strong defensive draft and this is reflected in these mock selections, with six of the 10 picks going to defense including the top two. The first offensive pick may surprise some but the talent was just too good at that point in the draft.

Go here to see the full seven-round mock draft.

Your comments are welcome, as always. Make them here in the comments or hit me up on Twitter and Facebook.  

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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QB run will come at NFL Draft, but when it happens matters most for Redskins

QB run will come at NFL Draft, but when it happens matters most for Redskins

Quarterbacks will come off the board in the first round of the NFL Draft Thursday night. That much is certain. Where those quarterbacks come off the board, however, matters much more for the Redskins. 

Mitchell Trubisky will be the first passer off the board, and depending on the information, he could be drafted as high as the first overall pick, and will certainly go early.

Trubisky, though, seems like the only certainty of a QB going early. Questions plague guys like Deshaun Watson and Patrick Mahomes. Those guys could all go in the first half of the draft, but they could all slide into the 20s as well. 

For Washington, the earlier quarterbacks get drafted the better. It seems highly unlikely the Redskins make a draft day trade of QB Kirk Cousins, limiting hardly any interest in a first-round passer.

The more passers that go before the 'Skins pick at 17 means the more high-quality players slide down the draft board. Look around the internet at lists of the best prospects available. Hardly any signal callers crack the Top 20, but the positional need at QB demands the position be overdrafted.

Though the Burgundy and Gold continue to slow-play contract talks with Cousins, he is under contract for 2017 and the team holds an option for 2018. That means Bruce Allen can sit in his draft room and potentially be a trade partner for a team that wants to land a QB, or just wait patiently and watch as they come off the board and send other desirable prospects closer to 17.

<<<LOOKING AT REDSKINS DRAFT PROSPECTS>>>

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