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Need to Know: RG3 the hot topic in the Redskins' week that was

Need to Know: RG3 the hot topic in the Redskins' week that was

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, August 23, six days before the Washington Redskins play the Baltimore Ravens.

Read and react: A look at the week that was

Griffin says he’s the best, Internet implodes—America took to psychoanalyzing Robert Griffin III after he said he believes he’s the best quarterback in the league. Of course the remarks were taken out of context. But that didn’t matter. For the next several days, Griffin’s comment led off talk shows and much cyber ink was spilled discussing the fourth-year quarterback.

RG3: ‘It’s just unfortunate’—What Griffin said came out on Monday. On Tuesay he addressed a group of media members that was mostly local and—oh, never mind, let’s just stop here and move on to actual football matters.

Things go downhill for Griffin vs. Lions—Griffin wasn’t very good on Thursday in the Redskins’ second preseason game, although it must be noted he didn’t get much help from his offensive line. Griffin dropped back to pass eight times and was hit on six of those, including a final one that apparently induced a concussion. Griffin had looked much improved in training camp compared to 2014 and he was OK in the Redskins’ preseason opener. But a lot of the positive of the positive perception and energy created over the last few weeks vaporized in the course of those eight plays

Gruden says Griffin will start when he recovers—It appears that Griffin’s concussion is on the mild side (keeping in mind that any concussion is serious) and it looks like he will be able to play against the Ravens on Saturday. Jay Gruden said that regardless of when Griffin is ready to play he will return to the starting job. Which, of course, is the logical thing to do since you planned on Griffin being the starter since February and it would be the height of dysfunction to abandon your plan after 16 snaps that didn’t go well. But, of course, some fans and some in the media are advocating starting Cousins or McCoy.

Hayward heads to IR—The hits just keep on coming to the Redskins’ special teams. After losing stalwarts Niles Paul and Logan Paulsen to season-ending injuries last week they took another blow when Adam Hayward suffered a torn ACL covering a kickoff late in the first half against the Lions. His absence, both in terms of the talent lost and the leadership void, will make it difficult to turn the Redskins’ special teams around.

Redskins trade for TE Carrier—After they lined tackle Tom Compton up at tight end for several snaps against the Giants, you had to figure the Redskins needed to do something at tight end with the departures of Paul and Paulsen leaving the oft-injured Jordan Reed as the only experienced tight end. They sent a 2017 fifth-round pick to the 49ers for Derek Carrier, who doesn’t have a ton of experience with just 16 games and nine receptions on his NFL resume. His role is to be determined. Hopefully he can be a backup and handle spot starts when Reed is sidelined.

Timeline

—Former Redskins quarterback Sonny Jurgensen was born on this date in 1934. Former Redskins quarterback Rex Grossman was born on this date in 1980

Today’s schedule: Practice 1:30; availability with Jay Gruden and players after practice

—It’s been 238 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be 21 days until they play the Dolphins at FedEx Field.

Days until: Preseason Redskins @ Ravens 6; final cuts 13; Redskins @ Giants Thursday night 32

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Redskins offseason questions: Can Kirk Cousins take the next step in 2017?

Redskins offseason questions: Can Kirk Cousins take the next step in 2017?

The good news for the 2016 Redskins was that they didn’t collapse after winning the division the previous season as has been their pattern in the past. The bad news was that they didn’t take the next step and improve from a franchise that can compete to make the playoffs into one that is playing multiple postseason games year in and year out.

That work begins right now for Jay Gruden, Scot McCloughan and the players. In the coming weeks, Redskins reporters Rich Tandler and JP Finlay will examine the biggest questions facing the Redskins as another offseason gets rolling.

RELATED: #RedskinsTalk podcast: Is Kirk too nice?

Will Kirk Cousins take the next step in 2017?

Finlay: The better question might be what constitutes the next step for Cousins? And going one step further, will it be with the Redskins? Answering the second part first, Cousins will be the 'Skins quarterback in 2017. Taking the next step is trickier, since the passer has thrown for more than 9,000 yards in the last two seasons.

For me, Cousins can still get much better, particularly in the red zone. If the Redskins scored at the same pace they pile up yards, this team would have won 11 games in 2016. 

In 2016, Cousins ranked 3rd in the NFL in passing yards, yet outside of the Top 10 in TDs with 25. To really enter the next phase of his career, Cousins needs to lead an offense that scores more, and that means 30+ touchdowns. He can do it. 

Tandler: I don’t look at the next step for Cousins being about numbers. Sure, maybe he can throw for 5,000 yards and 30-plus touchdowns on year. But being a top quarterback is more than that.

I want to see him go into Seattle next year and rally the Redskins from a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter. I want to see him go into a playoff game and, unlike what happened against the Packers after the 2015 season, will the team to a win when the Redskins aren’t playing their best and when a QB like Aaron Rodgers is on the other side. I want to see him glare at a lineman who missed an assignment and correct a receiver who went the wrong way on a route.

To be sure, he has led the team to some comeback wins and he has played very well in some key games, like the division-clinching win in Philadelphia in 2015. But a top-flight quarterback can’t essentially negate one of those with a play like the season-ending pick against the Giants. Sure, any quarterback is going to have an off day. But you have to have more pluses than minuses on the ledger.

Cousins has been a starter for just two years so maybe he can develop into a top-shelf quarterback. Putting up good stats is part of the picture but he won’t be there until he elevates and motivates those around him. Maybe he can take that next step but until he does there is no way of knowing if he will. 

More offseason questions: 

What are reasonable expectations for Josh Doctson?

— Will there be a surprise salary cap cut?

— Should the Redskins defense switch to the 4-3?

— Is Spencer Long the answer at center?

— How many D-linemen do the Redskins need?

— Should the Redskins draft another QB? 

— With Sean McVay gone, will the Redskins run the ball more?

— Can Cravens handle the transition to safety? 

— Will the Redskins re-sign Pierre Garçon? 

— Will Rob Kelley be the lead running back in 2017?

— Defense in the first round?

— Will they make a change at left guard?

<<<LOOKING AT REDSKINS DRAFT PROSPECTS>>>

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN and @Rich_TandlerCSN for live updates or click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTuneshere for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

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Some good news from Redskins Park: Josh Doctson running, catching football (VIDEO)

Some good news from Redskins Park: Josh Doctson running, catching football (VIDEO)

There hasn't been much good news out of Redskins Park lately, as the team deals with pending free agency for QB Kirk Cousins and others combined with rumors of infighting among the front office. So video of 2016 first round pick Josh Doctson running and cutting comes at a great time for beleaguered 'Skins fans. 

Doctson posted the video to his Snapchat account. When he last spoke after the Washington season ended, Doctson made clear he was feeling much better and that '100 percent health' is his main goal this offseason.

His rookie year, however, was a different matter.

The receiver out of TCU missed all but the first two games of the year. Even in those games, he played a very reduced role. Drafted 22nd overall, he had just two catches all year as an obscure Achilles' injuries landed him on the injured reserve. His plight could not be figured out by a slew of doctors and specialists, and the team finally decided to sit down their prized rookie.

A breakout year in 2017 would serve Jay Gruden's squad well, as the team stands to lose DeSean Jackson and/or Pierre Garçon to free agency. It looks likely the 'Skins will lose at least one of their starting WRs, and losing both is a distinct possibility. That could result in more than 2,000 receiving yards leaving the Redskins offense, and the team will need Doctson to pick up a good chunk of that production.

<<<LOOKING AT REDSKINS DRAFT PROSPECTS>>>

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!