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Need to Know: Knighton's new contract indicates limited interest from Redskins

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Need to Know: Knighton's new contract indicates limited interest from Redskins

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, April 8, 20 days before the NFL Draft.

Timeline

—The Redskins last played a game 89 days ago. It will be about 156 days until they play another one.

Days until: Redskins offseason workouts start 10; 2016 NFL draft 20; Redskins training camp starts 111

Hot topic

The Redskins made a late bid to try to retain nose tackle Terrance Knighton before the Patriots signed him last week. But a look at the contract that Pot Roast ended up signing with New England indicates it wasn’t a very serious effort to retain his services, at least if money was a significant factor (and it usually is).

When word that Knighton was on the move to Foxboro came out, the top-line numbers reported by the media said that Knighton got a one-year, $4.5 million deal. It appeared that the Redskins were simply substantially outbid as their offer was reported to be much lower.

But the details of the contract came out on Wednesday and, as is usually the case, the deal isn’t quite as sweet as it looked at first.

So it’s really a $1.1 million deal with incentives that could add another $3.4 million. According to Overthecap.com the 2016 cap charge is just over $2 million, meaning that only about $900,000 of the bonus money is considered likely to be earned. That means he will have to accomplish things that he didn’t accomplish in 2015 in order to collect.

Assuming that Knighton didn’t turn down more money from the Redskins, it would appear that they didn’t value him enough to at least match New England’s offer. They stuck with their original decision to go in another direction. We will see how it works out.

Fan question of the day

I’m not sure if you are in need of some professional therapy, @dafoota. I’m not qualified for that. But I would suggest that before you make an appointment with a shrink you should take a look at Morris’ stats since he had his memorable breakthrough as a rookie.

It’s rare to see such a steep, persistent decline in a player’s rushing stats. Here is the difference in the three major categories from 2012 through 2016.

If you’re concerned that he has gone to Dallas, well, look at the numbers again. Not that he can’t bounce back at the age of 27 but you also have to look at your calendar. It’s 2016. In the free agency era players can and do move from rival to rival. The Redskins did the right thing in letting him walk; it would have been counterproductive to continue to invest in a declining asset.

(Hit me up on Twitter with #NTK @Rich_TandlerCSN or here in the comments to submit a question)

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Long injury list hampers Redskins practice

Long injury list hampers Redskins practice

As Jay Gruden stepped to the podium to read the injury report, he warned, “This will be a while.”

He was right, as he rattled off one the longest injury reports of the season.

Out were G Spencer Long (concussion), S Will Blackmon (concussion), DE Chris Baker (ankle), DE Ricky Jean Francois (knee/foot), DE Anthony Lanier (lower leg), G Shawn Lauvao (groin), OT Ty Nsekhe (ankle), and S Donte Whitner (illness).

Of that group, all but Jean Francois, Lanier, and Nsekhe are starters. Between them and the limited players listed below it was difficult for the Redskin to conduct a normal practice.

“It was a challenge,” said Gruden of getting through it. “Practice was modified quite a bit today. We did more walkthrough today than we ever have on a Wednesday.”

“Sometimes you have to taper back just a hair to make it through practice, try to get the mental reps in with walkthrough and then hopefully the physical part will come maybe tomorrow. Friday we can open them up a bit.”

Limited in practice were TE Jordan Reed (shoulder), OLB Preston Smith (groin), ILB Will Compton (hip), G Brandon Scherff (ankle), and TE Derek Carrier (knee).

Reed returned to practice for the first time since suffering a Grade 3 sprain to the AC joint in his left shoulder in the game against the Cowboys on Thanksgiving. He missed the game in Arizona. While his limited participation was a good sign for his return it’ is way too early in the week to say with any degree of certainty that he will be playing against the Eagles.

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Robert Griffin III set to start Sunday for Browns vs. Bengals

Robert Griffin III set to start Sunday for Browns vs. Bengals

RGIII is finally getting another chance to play.

Plagued by injury after injury — most recently breaking a bone in his left shoulder in the Brown’s 29-10 loss to the Eagles in their season opener — the former Redskin is set to start for Cleveland against the Bengals on Sunday, ESPN’s Dan Graziano reports.

Griffin was cleared for contact last week after missing the majority of the Browns’ 0-12 season, and the team is coming off a bye week after its last loss to the Giants over Thanksgiving weekend.

In 2015, Kirk Cousins replaced Griffin as starting quarterback, and the Redskins released him at the end of the season. He signed a two-year, $15 million contract with Cleveland in March.  

In Griffin’s absence, the Browns have relied on Cody Kessler and Josh McCown, who boast a 65.5 and 54.5 completion percentage, respectively. The two combine for just 12 touchdowns this season.

Will Griffin be the key to ending the Browns’ winless season? We’ll find out Sunday.

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