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Need to Know: Redskins expect the best out of Morgan, Davis

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Need to Know: Redskins expect the best out of Morgan, Davis

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, November 22, three days before the Washington Redskins host the San Francisco 49ers.

Nickel coverage

Five items of interest from Redskins Park:

1. Many fans and some in the media tend to assume that if a player is benched or otherwise has his playing time cut he will simply pout and be unhappy and useless for the rest of the season. That is usually not the case. Often a player who gets a second chance goes out and tries to make the most of it. Josh Morgan and Fred Davis both could get a chance to show the Redskins what they have missed by reducing their roles this year and perhaps could put some good film down for teams shopping for free agents in 2014. "I think those guys are man enough to deal with it,” said Kyle Shanahan when asked about the possibility of the two of them being active this Monday. “We need those guys to help us this week."

2. Each day that goes by the more it looks like the Redskins will need to rely on Davis with Jordan Reed having missed both practices so far this week with a concussion. “You don’t know about a concussion,” Shanahan said. “If you’ve ever had a concussion, you really don’t know until the next day. You wake up and see how you feel and the doctors will go through their tests.” As usual with such an injury, it’s day by day, minute by minute.

3. Lance Lewis made a few nice plays running after the catch during the preseason and that earned him a spot on the practice squad. His work there—Shanahan said he liked his consistency—plus Leonard Hankerson’s knee injury landed him a spot on the 53. That’s good for his bank account; he’ll go from making the practice squad salary of $6,000 per week to making the NFL rookie minimum salary, which will be about $28,235 per week. He will be the No. 6 wide receiver on a team that usually dresses five on game day so he might not get much playing time but making it to the 53 is a start.

4. Jim Haslett said there was a “blown assignment” on the play where LeSean McCoy caught a 49-yard pass from Nick Foles to set up an Eagles touchdown last Sunday. With Ryan Kerrigan in futile pursuit of Philly’s star back, it was widely assumed that Kerrigan was in single coverage on McCoy. But, apparently, he should have had some help.

5. Nick Williams did not exactly dazzle in his NFL debut as a punt returner. He almost mishandled on kick and let another one bounce late in the game, giving the Redskins terrible field position to start their final, desperate drive to try to tie the game. Shanahan was unclear on whether or not Williams would get another chance this week. “No, I’m not going to tell you if Nick Williams is returning punts on Monday night, but good try,” Shanahan said when asked.

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Timeline

—Days until: Monday night 49ers @ Redskins 3; Giants @ Redskins 9; Chiefs @ Redskins 16

—Today’s schedule: Practice 11:50; Player availability and Mike Shanahan news conference after practice (approx. 1:15)

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Rob Jackson: “We still gotta come together”

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Redskins interview another former Chargers defensive coordinator

Redskins interview another former Chargers defensive coordinator

The Redskins continue to cast a wide net in their search for a new defensive coordinator. On Thursday, they interviewed John Pagano, who was recently let go as the defensive coordinator of the Chargers.

Pagano, the brother of Colts head coach Chuck Pagano, has been coaching with the Chargers since 2002. That year he started as a quality control coach and then he was the linebackers coach from 2005-2011. The Chargers fired defensive coordinator Greg Manusky, a current Redskins coach and another candidate to run the defense in Washington, after the 2011 season and Pagano was promoted into that job.

Related: Projecting the Redskins' roster--defense

In Pagano’s five seasons with the Chargers, the performance of the defense was respectable. In terms of total yards, San Diego was in the top 10 twice and only once were they ranked worse than 20th.

The Redskins fired defensive coordinator Joe Barry on January 5. The list of candidates they have interviewed includes Mike Pettine, Gus Bradley, Rob Ryan, Manusky, and Jason Tarver. They are expected to interview former Jets and Bills defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman on Friday.

More Redskins: Setting the odds on what will happen with Cousins

None of the candidates they have interviewed have accepted positions with other teams so they are all still in play. There is no timetable for the team to make a decision, although the sense is that the process is coming to a close and will be concluded in the near future.

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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Need to Know: How long is too long in the Redskins' defensive coordinator search?

Need to Know: How long is too long in the Redskins' defensive coordinator search?

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, January 20, 97 days before the NFL draft.

Timeline

Days until:
NFL franchise tag deadline 40
NFL free agency starts 48
First Sunday of 2017 season 233

Will Pleasant push the defensive coordinator search to a conclusion?

Is the Redskins’ search for a defensive coordinator taking too long? Joe Barry was fired two weeks ago yesterday. The Redskins have made it clear that they want to be very thorough in their search. But taking time creates problems and one just popped up. Assistant defensive back coach Aubrey Pleasant apparently has the option to follow Sean McVay to Los Angeles. But the Redskins want to hold on to him.

The problem is that they don’t want to sign Pleasant to be, say, the cornerbacks coach and tie the hands of the incoming defensive coordinator. They already would like the new guy to keep OLB coach Greg Manusky and ILB coach Kirk Olivadotti. Locking in a third position coach might made it very hard to persuade a quality coordinator to come on board.

Related: Projecting the Redskins' roster--defense

However, they can’t hold Pleasant, who is a young, energetic coach who relates well to the players, back indefinitely. Presumably McVay and defensive coordinator Wade Phillips have a bigger role in mind for him and they won’t wait forever for him to get things resolved in Washington.

But it’s not like the Pleasant situation will need to be resolved by the close of business today. We’re talking days, not hours. How many days? They could lose him due because of the Redskins’ deliberate process if it stretches into sometime early next week. I think the chances are strong that there will be a decision on the new defensive coordinator by, say, the close of business on Tuesday.

More Redskins: Setting the odds on what will happen with Cousins

I’ll wrap this up with a quick round of laying out the $100 in casino chips on the various defensive coordinator candidates. Things have changed since I did it on Monday. I’ll still make Greg Manusky the favorite but I’ll drop him down five bucks to $35. I’m downgrading Mike Pettine down to a $10 wager; I’ve heard that the organization was not impressed with his interview. I’m more than doubling the wager on Gus Bradley to $25. It’s been a few days since reports that the Chargers were pressing him for a decision and yet he remains in play. I’m going with $10 on Dennis Thurmon, who is from the school of the aggressive style of play that Jay Gruden is looking for. Rob Ryan gets not a cent and the remaining $20, including John Pagao, who interviewed yesterday, goes on the field.

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In case you missed it

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.