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Need to Know: The five best Redskins performances of the last 20 seasons

Need to Know: The five best Redskins performances of the last 20 seasons

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, April 18, 20 days before the NFL draft.

Nickel coverage

(Note: I’m going to be out of action for a few days here. I’m bringing back a few of the most popular Nickel Coverage posts from the last few months to give you a chance to rehash them. Back on Monday.)

Last week we used the Approximate Value metric to look at which Redskins were the most valuable in 2013. There is a link to more details on AV in that post if you want it. Today, there are the best single seasons Redskins players have had in terms of AV in the last 20 years (1994-2013).

QB Robert Griffin III, 2012, AV of 18—You thought it was the best season you’ve seen by a Redskin in a long time. You were right. He is the only Redskins quarterback ever to finish a season with a passer rating of over 100.

QB Brad Johnson, 1999, AV of 16—Johnson made the Pro Bowl and was the last quarterback to lead the Redskins to the division title before Griffin did it. With 4,005 yards passing that year Johnson is one of two Redskins to pass for over 4,000 yards in a season (Jay Schroeder, 1986, 4,109).

CB Champ Bailey, 2000, AV of 16—In just his second year in the league, Bailey earned the first of seven straight Pro Bowl berths (four with Washington). He had five interceptions and a fumble recovery for the fourth-ranked defense in the league.

G Tre Johnson, 1999, AV of 15—“The Banga” was at his road-grading best this season, protecting Johnson and helping to clear the way for Stephen Davis’ 1,405 yards rushing. It was the only season of his seven in Washington where he played 16 games and he earned his only Pro Bowl berth.

LB Marcus Washington, 2004, AV of 15—He was the only Pro Bowl representative on the third-ranked defense in the league. Washington, in his first year with the Redskins after coming over from the Colts as a free agent, had 87 tackles, 3 passes defended, forced one fumble and recovered one.

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Timeline

—It’s been 110 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be about 142 days until they play another one.

Days until: First veteran minicamp 11; NFL Draft 20; Training camp starts 96

In case you missed it

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Final Countdown: Punch to the gut floors Redskins in Arizona on 6th worst play of 2016

Final Countdown: Punch to the gut floors Redskins in Arizona on 6th 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. 6 worst play of 2016

Redskins at Cardinals Week 13

3:47 left in Q4, Cardinals ball at their own 34, 4th and 1, Cardinals leading 24-23

David Johnson up the middle to ARZ 48 for 14 yards (Josh Norman).

Related: A team to watch in the Cousins situation

Tandler: What's worse than a punch in the gut? A gut punch you don't see coming. The Redskins had pulled to within a point with plenty of time left to get a winning score—if the defense could get a stop. When Bruce Arians sent out his offense on fourth and one, the Redskins had to watch for Carson Palmer to try to draw them offside. In fact, Joe Barry told the Redskins not to expect a snap and to be sure not the jump. But they did snap the ball and Johnson ran for the easiest 14 yards up the gut you’ll ever see. The air was out of the Redskins’ comeback balloon and Palmer all but put it away a few plays later with a 42-yard TD pass to J.J. Nelson.

More Redskins: Will the first round fall into place?

Finlay: This is not the first 4th Down conversion on our list of bad plays, but perhaps the most important one. Washington desperately needed this stop, and the defense thought they had it on the 3rd down play prior. Only Arians did not flinch about going for it, much to Barry's surprise, and the 'Skins D had no shot at Johnson. This play illustrated the weakness of Washington's defensive front perhaps better than any other run all season.

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!

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With Matt Ryan in the Super Bowl, Kirk Cousins will make Pro Bowl, per report

With Matt Ryan in the Super Bowl, Kirk Cousins will make Pro Bowl, per report

Kirk Cousins' price tag just moved even higher with the news that he will replace Matt Ryan in the Pro Bowl. ESPN's John Keim reported the roster move first.

Ryan's Atlanta Falcons advanced to the Super Bowl on Sunday with a 44-21 dismantling of the Green Bay Packers. That victory means Ryan will not be available for the Pro Bowl, held this Sunday in Orlando. Cousins got his spot as an alternate.

Cousins gets the spot deservedly. This season he passed for 4,917 yards, completing 67 percent of his passes and throwing 25 TDs to 12 INTs. In two seasons since being named starter for the Redskins, Cousins has thrown for more than 9,000 yards. 

The Pro Bowl nod for Cousins will only make the Redskins pending contract talks that much tougher. The quarterback played in 2016 under the franchise tag, which netted him nearly $20 million. This season Washington could again place Cousins on the franchise tag, with a price tag around $24 million. Both sides can still work for a long-term deal, though the value of that contract would likely soar past $100 million and closer to $120 million.

Some questions exist within the Redskins organization if that is too much money devoted to one player, even if it is a Pro Bowl quarterback.

It's fitting that Cousins is subbing in for Ryan, who has found much success playing under Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan. All signs points to Shanahan taking over as the 49ers head coach after the Super Bowl, and a report emerged that San Francisco would make a strong push to obtain Cousins, either in free agency or via trade. 

RELATED: 2017 NFL MOCK DRAFT 1.0

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!