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Need to Know: Stallworth already on the bubble?

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Need to Know: Stallworth already on the bubble?

RICHMOND—Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, July 30, nine days before the Redskins open their preseason against the Titans.

Is Stallworth running out of time?

Donte Stallworth was a late free agent arrival for the Redskins this year. He came to minicamp in mid-June to try out for the team. He did well enough to get a roster spot.

But things have not gone well for him here in training camp. He suffered a pulled hamstring on Friday, the second day of practice. That put him out of Saturday’s session and he was still a spectator when practice resumed on Monday.

If his injury lingers on much longer you have to think that it will start to affect his chances of making the team. His odds were somewhat long to begin with. The top four receivers are set with Pierre Garçon, Josh Morgan, Santana Moss, and Leonard Hankerson all locked in. Aldrick Robinson is also likely set as the coaches love his speed.

That leaves the sixth WR spot—if there is one. The Redskins seem to be committed to carrying four tight ends and that might force them to eliminate one wide receiver job. That would place Stallworth on the outside looking in.

But if they do go with six then Stallworth has a shot. But, as they say, you can’t make the club in the tub. If he continues to watch practice instead of participating he doesn’t have much of a chance.

Stallworth, however, does have two things working for him. The coaches know him from when he was in Washington in 2011 and they like him. In addition, no other candidates for the last WR spot are lighting it up. Devery Henderson, signed at the same time as Stallworth, is not showing the burst of speed that was his trademark in New Orleans and Dezmon Briscoe has been inconsistent.

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Today’s schedule (all practices open to the public)

10:00—Walkthrough practice, players available to media coming off the field

After walkthrough (approx. 11:30)—News conference with player TBA

3:20—Full practice, players available to media coming off the field

5:30 (approx.)—Mike Shanahan news conference

RG3 shows off improving knee at camp

In case you missed it

Days until: Redskins @ Titans preseason opener 9; Preseason game 3 vs. Bills 25; Redskins @ Cowboys 75

Tandler on Twitter
During an early drill w/o defense, #RG3 barked out a hard count so effectively that the whole right side of the OL jumped. #RedskinsTalk

— Rich Tandler (@Rich_TandlerCSN) July 29, 2013

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Want to beat the Cardinals? Bring down Carson Palmer

Want to beat the Cardinals? Bring down Carson Palmer

Many considered the Cardinals a Super Bowl contender this season, though the team has not performed to that level so far in 2016. One huge problem for Arizona - protecting quarterback Carson Palmer. 

In its last four games, Arizona has given up 16 sacks on Palmer, including a staggering eight sacks against the Carolina Panthers. In the last two games, Palmer has gone down six times, and both games have been losses. 

With weapons like wideout Larry Fitzgerald and running back David Johnson, Palmer has lots of options to move the ball. That's why Jay Gruden knows how important it is for his front seven to get home.

"It’s going to start with the pass rush," Gruden said. "If Carson [Palmer] has all day to throw and give Larry time to do double moves and stem you inside and vertical and then get back out or break it back across, I don’t care how big you are or how fast you are, it’s going to be hard."

In all six Cardinals losses, Palmer has been sacked at least two times, and in four of the losses, Palmer has gone down at least four times. Beyond the Panthers' eight sacks, the Bills brought down the Cards QB five times, and both the Seahawks and Vikings got to Palmer four times.

While the sack totals stand out, Washington's Preston Smith knows each week is different in the NFL.

"Every game you’re fired up because you feel like it's an opporttunity to get out there and get sacks," Smith said. "You don’t think about what another team did, they’re going to play us different."

Talking on the latest #RedskinsTalk Podcast, Redskins linebacker Trent Murphy acknowledged that the defense knows how beat up the Cardinals' offensive line is. Murphy, who has seven sacks on the season, added that he's 'drooling' for this matchup and the opportunity to take advantage of the Arizona vulnerabilities up front. (Listen to the full podcast below.)

Bruce Arians knows his team is undermanned on the line, and the Arizona offense will be creative to protect Palmer.

"You have to help them," Arians said of his O-line. "You have got to stay balanced and hopefully not get into a situation where it’s a throw, throw, throw game because then you’re putting them in harm’s way and your quarterback in harm’s way."

It doesn't help that in his 14th season, Palmer is probably one of the least mobile quarterbacks in the NFL. After matching up against Aaron Rodgers and Dak Prescott in their last two games, the Redskins defense knows Palmer won't move nearly as much, though that doesn't mean he's neccesarily easier to get down.

"You’re not going against a mobile quarterback but you still got to get to that spot," Smith said. "Carson’s a good quarterback."

Linebacker Mason Foster said that sacks aren't as important as consistent pressure. 

"On a great quarterback like that you want consistent pressure all day long. Make things tough on him, you don’t want a clean pocket," Foster said. "If you have pressure in his face all day and you don’t get no sacks, I think that's a success."

Even at 36, Palmer is still a dangerous quarterback. He's thrown for nearly 3,000 yards this year with a beat-up offensive line and missing one start. But numbers are numbers, and the data shows that if the 'Skins pass rushers can get Palmer to the ground, the chances of a Washington win shoot right up. 

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

 

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Poll: What is your approval rating for Redskins coach Jay Gruden?

Poll: What is your approval rating for Redskins coach Jay Gruden?

As always, hit the poll and then head to the comments section here and talk about your answer, or reply on Twitter.