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Need to Know: Redskins' restructure money already spent

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Need to Know: Redskins' restructure money already spent

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, September 5, four days before the Redskins open up their season against the Eagles at FedEx Field.

Nickel coverage

1. Pierre Garçon says that he is 100 percent healthy after missing six games last year with a toe injury and having surgery to repair a torn labrum during the offseason. It is typical for athletes to say they are “fine” when dealing with an injury when they are anything but. In this case, however, it seems that the athlete is accurate in his self-assessment. Garçon took a few days off during training camp but no more than most other veteran players. He didn’t play a whole lot in preseason but neither did Alfred Morris. Certainly something could happen along the way but for right now it looks like all systems are go for the player who helps the Redskins’ offense go.

2. The Redskins restructured the contracts of Stephen Bowen, Adam Carriker, and Barry Cofield in recent days to create some cap room. But don’t get excited about the prospects of them going after a free agent. As Bruce Allen indicated during training camp, the Redskins are restructuring deals just to be able to stay under the salary cap. During the offseason only the top 51 contracts count towards the cap. Once the season starts, the contracts of all 53 active players plus players on PUP and injured reserve and the practice squad count towards. The Redskins had some trimming to do to get in compliance with the cap and to give themselves some cushion during the season. In short, the savings from the restructures are already spent.

3. I predicted yesterday that the conversation on RG3 would turn the corner from “concerns” and other such controversies to playing in games. And what transpired during Griffin’s Wednesday press conference was in line with that. There were 19 questions asked and only two of them had to do with what has transpired since Thursday, when Dr. James Andrews cleared Griffin to play against the Eagles, i. e. the “concerns”. To be sure, many of the others dealt with returning from the injury but those would be there even if there had been total radio silence on the rehab from Redskins Park. We’re not out of the woods on the knee talk yet but we’re getting there.

4. There is injury report today even though you have probably read that most of the other teams around the league had to issue one. That’s because when a team has a Monday night game the reports go out Thursday-Saturday instead of Wednesday-Friday. The only real concern this week seems to be Brandon Meriweather, who has a pulled groin in addition to his still-recovering knee.

5. Even though Griffin has been a spectator for much of the offseason, he remains the leader of the team. He was asked if he gave the rookies any advice. After joking that people were treating him like he was a five- or seven-year veteran, he got serious.

“For the rookies, you know, I talked to the guys on our team like Chris Thompson playing running back, you are here for a reason and you’ve got to believe it. Your coaches believe in you. That’s why they drafted you. That’s why you made the team. So if you step on that field and don’t feel like you don’t belong, then it will come out and you’ll play like you don’t belong. But if you go out on that field and play like you belong and trust in yourself and trust your preparation, then you have nothing to worry about.”


Stat of the day

—Of the 53 players who are on the Redskins’ roster, 11 are new to the organization since the end of last season. A total of 17 were not on the opening 53-man roster in 2012.

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Timeline

—Redskins quarterback Billy Kilmer was born on this day in 1939

—It’s been 239 days since the last Redskins game; there are four days until the next one

—Days until: Eagles @ Redskins 4; Redskins @ Packers 10; Lions @ Redskins 17

—Today’s schedule: Player availability 11:15; Jim Haslett press conference 12:00; practice 1:00; Kyle Shanahan and Mike Shanahan press conferences after practice (approx. 3:00)

Tandler looks at the Eagles

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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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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.