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Need to Know: Five Redskins free agents who are unlikely to return

Need to Know: Five Redskins free agents who are unlikely to return

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, January 14, 61 days before the start of NFL free agency.

Five Redskins free agents who are unlikely to return

ILB Keenan Robinson—If you’d told me a year ago that he would be on a list like this one in early 2016 I would have said that you’re crazy. But a nagging injury and issues with fitting in to the defensive scheme led to him spending a lot of time on the bench this season. He could be a good player but he needs a change of scenery.

QB Colt McCoy—The Redskins need to get a younger backup quarterback with some potential. They were able to survive the downfall of Robert Griffin III because Mike Shanahan had drafted Cousins. While there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about Cousins’ future there are no guarantees. They need to get and groom a younger quarterback to be the backup and let McCoy, who will be 30 before the season starts, go to another team.

RB Alfred Morris—I’m not going to say that there’s no way Morris will be back. Perhaps there won’t be much of a market for back who has seen both his per-carry average and total rushing yards decline in each of the last four years and he and the Redskins will agree on a short-term deal. But it seems much more likely that he will find a team that emphasizes the zone-blocking scheme and move on.

TE Logan Paulsen—His season was shut down before it even started after he suffered a toe injury in training camp. There was talk that he might not have made the team had he not been injured. The team would like more speed and athleticism at the position and seem likely to move on from Paulsen, who turns 29 next month.

CB Will Blackmon—He did a decent job filling in for the injured Chris Culliver and, before that, DeAngelo Hall. Decent is fine for a guy you pick up in Week 2 of the season but not when you have the whole offseason to sift through options and find a backup to Culliver, who could miss some regular season time after tearing his ACL and MCL.

Timeline

—The Redskins last played a game four days ago. It will be about 241 days until they play another one.

Days until: NFL Combine 41; NFL free agency starts 61; 2016 NFL draft 105

In case you missed it

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New #RedskinsTalk Podcast - A.J. Francis talks Jay Gruden, Greg Manusky and Kirk Cousins

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@Francis_Sports

New #RedskinsTalk Podcast - A.J. Francis talks Jay Gruden, Greg Manusky and Kirk Cousins

Redskins defensive lineman A.J. Francis opens up to JP Finlay on what it's like to play for Jay Gruden, his pick for defensive coordinator, and the latest on Kirk Cousins' contract.

Listen below, and if you'd like to hear more from Francis, check out his pro wrestling podcast Jobbing Out Show here

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!

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Redskins set to interview new defensive coordinator candidate in Dennis Thurman, per report

Redskins set to interview new defensive coordinator candidate in Dennis Thurman, per report

The Redskins have conducted interviews with a number of candidates at defensive coordinator, but a new name emerged Thursday morning. 

Thurman played cornerback in the NFL for nine years from 1978 to 1986, recording 36 career interceptions in 137 games. The bulk of his playing career was spent with the Dallas Cowboys, but he played his final season with the then St. Louis Rams. 

In coaching since 1988, Thurman's coaching career started working with the secondary for the Cardinals before an eight-year run at his alma mater, Southern Cal. From there, Thurman came back to the pros, joining the Ravens coaching staff in 2002 working under Rex Ryan. In 2008, Thurman moved on with Ryan to the New York Jets, and in 2013, was named Jets defensive coordinator In 2014, he went to Buffalo with Ryan to serve as their defensive coordinator when Ryan was named head coach.

In four seasons as a coordinator, two in New York, two in Buffalo, Thurman's defenses ranked no worse than 19th, per Pro Football Reference.

A football lifer like Thurman likely has connections all over the league, but it's interesting to note he has worked with new Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn since 2009. The two were on staffs both with the Jets and the Bills. Another Redskins coordinator candidate Gus Bradley has often been linked with Lynn, though the two have never been on the same staff.

Meeting with Thurman will satisfy the NFL's guidelines to interview minority candidates for coordinator positions. The Rooney Rule, as it was instituted, requires NFL teams to interview minority candidates for head coaching jobs, but only suggests that teams extend the practice to coordinator positions. Washington had set an interview with Carolina's Steve Wilks, but then he was promoted internally to be the Panthers defensive coordinator and the meeting never took place. 

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!