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Need to Know: The five youngest Redskins and their 2014 prospects

Need to Know: The five youngest Redskins and their 2014 prospects

Here is what you need to know on this Monday, January 27, 23 days before the NFL Combine.

Nickel coverage

Here are the five youngest Redskins who saw action on the field in 2013 and their prospects for 2014:

CB David Amerson (22.1 years old as of today)—It was thought that he would be something of a project when he was drafted in the second round last year and that has proven to be the case. He had two interceptions, one of which was a key pick six against the Raiders but he had issues in coverage and with tackling as well. With both 2013 starters hitting the free agent market, Amerson should be a 2014 starter.

RB Chris Thompson (23.3)—Some thought that he was a scapegoat for overall poor special teams play when he was pulled from kick return duties after four games. Still, it’s hard to say that he was getting the job done on either kickoffs (20.0-yard average) or punts (5.1). Thompson has two things you can’t coach, one good, one bad. He’s fast and he’s injury prone. How much he can emphasize the former and avoid the latter will determine if Jay Gruden will be able to use Thompson as a weapon.

TE Jordan Reed (23.6)—It appears that the only thing that may stand between Reed and a stellar NFL career is the injury bug. Reed was on pace to catch 80 passes for almost 900 yards but a Week 11 concussion ended his season prematurely. You can never tell about concussions but if he turns out have no higher risk than any other player he will be a key part of the offense.

S Bacarri Rambo (23.6)—After starting the first two games, Rambo virtually disappeared from the lineup for much of the season. Injuries forced him back into the lineup and while his play improved, his coverage and tackling still were not up to snuff. His role in 2014 may well depend on how well he can play on special teams.

QB Robert Griffin III (23.9)—Yes, even after two years on the roster Griffin still is one of the five youngest on the team, nosing out LB Brandon Jenkins for the spot by three days. He’s about five months younger than Andrew Luck and about a year and a half younger than Russell Wilson. Oh, in case you didn’t know, he’s projected to be the starting QB this year.

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Timeline

—It’s been 29 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be about 223 days until they play another one.

—Days until: NFL Free agency starts 43; Offseason workouts start 70; NFL Draft 101

In case you missed it

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The Final Countdown: Eli Manning goes deep for the Redskins 7th worst play of the year

The Final Countdown: Eli Manning goes deep for the Redskins 7th worst play of the year

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. 7 worst play of 2016

Giants at Redskins, Week 17

4:02 left in Q4, Giants ball 1st and 10 at their own 31, game tied 10-10

Eli Manning pass deep left to Tavarres King pushed ob at WAS 25 for 44 yards (Will Blackmon).

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Tandler: It looked like the Redskins were on the verge of saving their season. They were down 10-0 in the third quarter but they battled back to tie it up in the late going. But after lulling the Redskins defense to sleep with running plays and short passes, Manning launched one deep down the left sideline. King, who had one reception for six yards on the season coming into the game, had a step on cornerback Greg Toler and he hauled in the pass for 44 yards. Four plays later Robbie Gould kicked a 40-yard field goal to give the Giants the lead.

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Finlay: In a terrible game that led to many more questions than answers for the Redskins, this play was just a huge, huge disappointment. Washington fought back to tie up a game that they had largely been outplayed in, particulrly in the first half. Remember, the Giants had nothing to play for while for the 'Skins, a win would put them in the playoffs. The New York offense was laregly nonexistent in the second half of this game, as it became obvious Eli Manning did not want to get hit. And still, the embattled Redskins defense gave up a long pass play to a dude that had contrbuted basically nothing 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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Report: One team Redskins need to watch out for when it comes to Kirk Cousins this offseason

Report: One team Redskins need to watch out for when it comes to Kirk Cousins this offseason

Mike Shanahan likes Kirk Cousins, both as a person and as a quarterback. The former Redskins coach has made no secret about that. Luckilly for the 'Skins, especially with Cousins staring at free agency, Mike Shanahan is no longer coaching in the NFL.

His son Kyle, however, seems highly likely to take over as San Francisco 49ers head coach. And soon.

Kyle Shanahan currently serves as the offensive coordinator for the Atlanta Falcons, and once their playoff run ends, most expect Shanahan to be named Niners head coach. 

Why should Washington fans care? Allow ESPN's Adam Schefter to explain:

Kyle Shanahan is set to become the San Francisco 49ers' head coach after Atlanta's season ends. San Francisco needs a quarterback as much as any other team in the league. If Cousins is available, the 49ers would pursue him as hard as they've pursued Shanahan.

Even if Washington tags Cousins, San Francisco could attempt to pry him loose in a trade with a package that could include this year's No. 2 overall draft pick. And if Washington doesn't want to deal now, it could have issues later.

This news should not be a shock to Skins fans, but it should be taken seriously. Remember, Kyle Shanahan was part of the Washington organization when Cousins was drafted and the duo worked together in 2012 and 2013. Most quarterbacks would love to run Shanahan's No. 1 ranked offense from Atlanta, and the guess here says Cousins would probably jump at the opportunity. 

Still, much must be worked out.

While some in the Washington front office might have questions about what the long-term value should be in a Cousins contract, the team still has some control. They can place the franchise tag on Cousins this season, like they did last season, and work until mid-summer on a multi-year deal. Or Cousins can again play on a franchise tag in 2017, like he did in 2016 and passed for nearly 5,000 yards.

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What makes Schefter's report the most interesting is the mention of the No. 2 overall pick. Observing the Redskins in 2016, it became obvious the team needs more impact players on defense, and with the second overall pick combined with their own 17th pick and eight more after that, that could deliver an immediate boost. 

Whatever boost a package of draft picks might bring in will be hard pressed to match the production of Cousins. Finding a starting quarterback in the NFL is exceptionally hard, and while Cousins has shown flashes of a special player, he has certainly confirmed he is a capable player in two seasons at the helm of Jay Gruden's offense.

Scot McCloughan and the Redskins brain trust have a few more weeks before free agency, and with it, the deadline to again place the franchise tag on Cousins. It's nearly impossible to see a scenario where Cousins hits the open market this season, but if the No. 2 overall pick comes into play, other scenarios start to seem more possible. 

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!