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Need to Know: Points will need to soar for 2014 Redskins

Need to Know: Points will need to soar for 2014 Redskins

Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, June 25, 29 days before the Redskins start training camp.

Three and out

—I’m having a hard time figuring out how much the Redskins will pass this year. The Patriots and Saints passed about 40 times per game last year. The Seahawks and Panthers averaged about 30 pass attempts per game. The 7-9 Rams and 4-12 Bucs were in the bottom six in pass attempts while the 4-12 Browns and 4-12 Falcons were in the top three. The point is that there’s more than one way to get it done. I think that their offensive skill players dictate that they pass closer to 40 times per game than 30.

—But it’s also important to remember that Jay Gruden is not a pass-happy play caller. Of the three years he called plays in Cincinnati the Bengals were in the top 10 in the NFL is rushing attempts twice. Last year they had 25 or more rushing attempts in 11 of their 16 games.

—No matter how they do it, however, the Redskins’ offense is going to have to put up a lot of points for the team to stay competitive. The defense should be better but it’s not going to be set up to thrive in a tight, low-scoring game. They will need to put pressure on the other team to throw the ball so their pass rush can get to work. The best way to do that is to, in the words of the fight song, let the points soar. By ground or by air, the Redskins are going to have to get the ball into the end zone with great frequency. Again, there are a lot of ways to get it done but if the Redskins don’t average something near a touchdown per quarter they could be in trouble this season.

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Timeline

—It’s been 178 days since the Redskins played a game; in 74 days they play the Texans in their 2014 season opener.

Days until: Training camp 29; Preseason opener vs. Patriots 43; Home opener Jaguars @ Redskins 81

In case you missed it

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Jay Gruden at Senior Bowl: Redskins 'totally anticipate' Kirk Cousins will return in 2017

Jay Gruden at Senior Bowl: Redskins 'totally anticipate' Kirk Cousins will return in 2017

MOBILE – Jay Gruden provided a glimmer of optimism for Redskins fans freaked out about Kirk Cousins' contract situation. 

"I totally anticipate him coming back to the Washington Redskins," Gruden said. 

The Redskins coach talked from the sidelines of the Senior Bowl where he and much of the team's staff were scouting college seniors. 

Gruden explained he had texted back and forth with Cousins a few times this offseason and looked forward to watching him play in the Pro Bowl. 

Since Gruden named Cousins starter in 2015, the quarterback had passed for more than 9,000 yards and twice broken Skins franchise passing records. 

Some indications of a long term deal for Cousins land in the $120 million range, but the Washington organization also has the flexibility to use the franchise tag this season at a cost of nearly $24 million. 

MORE REDSKINS: Who else might want to trade for Cousins?

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The Final Countdown: Redskins defense can't stop Matt Stafford for 5th worst play of 2016

The Final Countdown: Redskins defense can't stop Matt Stafford for 5th worst play of 2016

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. 5 worst play of 2016

Redskins at Lions Week 7

0:22 left in Q4, Lions ball at the Redskins 18, 3rd and 10, Redskins leading 17-13

Matthew Stafford pass short left to Anquan Boldin for 18 yards, TOUCHDOWN.

More Redskins: Podcast--All eyes now on Cousins

Tandler: The Redskins had just taken the lead on a nifty 19-yard option run by Kirk Cousins with 1:05 left to play. All they had to do was keep the Lions out of the end zone but the defense was not up to the task. In fact, it was laughably easy for Stafford. The first three times he dropped back he completed passes for 23, 14, and 20 yards and just like that the Lions were in the red zone. It looked for a minute like the Redskins might hang on as two passes went incomplete. But on third down Stafford found Boldin open inside the five and the defense couldn’t get there quickly enough to keep him out of the end zone.

Related: Gruden's fate hinges on Manusky

Finlay: 65 seconds was all the 'Skins defense needed to preserve a win by holding the Lions without a touchdown. 65 seconds away from a five-game win streak, and knowing what we do now, a playoff berth. The Redskins defense couldn't stop Stafford, or Boldin, and lost in Detroit. A gut wrenching loss as the momentum on the Washington sideline seemed incredibly high just minutes before when Cousins ran in what looked like the game-winning score. 

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!