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Need to Know: What power blocking linemen are available for the Redskins?

Need to Know: What power blocking linemen are available for the Redskins?

Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, April 7, 23 days before the Washington Redskins go on the clock at the NFL draft.

Question of the day

A few days a week I’ll give an in-depth answer to a question submitted by a fan on my Twitter feed, via the Real Redskins Facebook page, or in the comments section here. On Twitter address the questions to me at @Rich_TandlerCSN with the #NTK hashtag. There will be a comment thread set up on the Facebook page and if you’re asking your question here, put “for NTK” at the start of the comment.

Today’s question comes from Twitter:

Yesterday Tarik and I discussed the Redskins’ likely shift to more of a power rushing with Bill Callahan on board. I noted that the Redskins currently have two starting linemen who are ill-suited to power blocking in RG Chris Chester and C Kory Lichtensteiger. Who could replace them?

I know that everyone is all anxious for the Redskins to draft offensive linemen and everything but there are players currently on the roster who could take over as starters this year or next and make the O-line better suited to power blocking.

The potential guard is Spencer Long, last year’s third-round draft pick. At 6-5, 311 (and able to add on more weight if necessary) he has the size for the power technique.

A lot of people were surprised a year ago when center Tyler Larsen went undrafted out of Utah State. He did not play last year and the Redskins were able to pick him up as a street free agent. He’s 6-4, 315, on the large size for a center. Larsen is not a sure thing and he probably needs a year of seasoning to really find out if he will. But he is as good a shot as any mid- to late-round pick will be.

But if McCloughan is unsure about Long and wants insurance in case Larsen can’t make it, there are options in the draft. I did a Draft Countdown post on my favorite guard in the draft a few weeks ago. Laken Tomlinson of Duke is 6-3, 323, and he has the high level of intelligence that is a characteristic of good O-linemen.

I’m not sure McCloughan will take Tomlinson with their top pick in the second round but if they get a later second-rounder in a trade Tomlinson might be in play. If he’s still there in the third he could be hard to pass up.

Cameron Erving is the consensus best center in the draft and he could blast some defenders out of the middle of the line. He has plenty of technical flaws but as a converted defensive lineman that is to be expected. There’s nothing wrong with him technique-wise that Bill Callahan can’t fix.

Erving could be gone by the time the Redskins pick in the second round. If they want him and he’s still there, they have better get him at No. 38.

Timeline

—It’s been 100 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be about 159 days until they play another one.

Days until: Redskins offseason workouts start 13; 2015 NFL Draft 23; Redskins training camp starts 114

If you have any questions about what's going on at Redskins Park, hit me up in the comments. And I'm always on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Need to Know: Washington Redskins free agency needs—Offense

Need to Know: Washington Redskins free agency needs—Offense

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, February 23, 14 days before the March 9 start of NFL free agency.  

Timeline

Days until:

—NFL Franchise tag deadline (3/1) 6
—NFL Combine (3/2) 7
—Redskins offseason workouts start (4/17) 53
—NFL Draft (4/27) 63
—First Sunday of 2017 season (9/10) 199

Free agent moves—Offense

Free agency starts two weeks from today. The Redskins have plenty of needs, both big and small. Let’s take a look around and see what offensive positions they might be looking to bolster when things get going. I’ll follow up with the defense in the next few days.

Quarterback—It could be a yawner at this position or there could be plenty of drama. If Kirk Cousins gets franchise tagged or defies current expectations and signs a long-term deal, the depth chart will remain the same. If he is gone via a trade, things could be shaken up. While they may draft a QB in late April they could go for a mid-priced veteran as insurance.

RELATED: NFL Mock Draft Version 3.0

Running back—The Redskins have a depth chart loaded with young, unproven talent at this position. If they want a veteran presence in the meeting room they could look at someone like Robert Turbin (McCloughan had a hand in drafting him in Seattle in 2012) or maybe Knile Davis.

Wide receiver—Things will get very interesting if the word on the street comes to pass and both Pierre Garçon and DeSean Jackson are gone. They have a presumably healthy Josh Doctson in line to replace one but they would need a veteran. Maybe Kenny Stills or Kenny Britt, both young and productive, could be under consideration. If one of the veterans stays they likely will get depth in the draft.

More Redskins: #RedskinsTalk podcast: Is Kirk too nice for his own good?

Tight end—Vernon Davis seems likely to be back. If he’s not, the Redskins probably would rather have an alternative to Niles Paul as Jordan Reed’s primary backup. The probably won’t swim in the deep end of the pool with Martellus Bennett and Jared Cook. But maybe they will look at Jermaine Gresham, who made the Pro Bowl twice in Cincinnati while Jay Gruden was the Bengals’ offensive coordinator.

Offensive line—Yesterday, JP and I discussed what they might do at left guard if they want to upgrade from Shawn Lauvao. Perhaps they could go for Kevin Zeitler, another Bengal who played under Gruden. But he will command a contract in the $8-$10 million range and with Brandon Scherff coming up for an extension next year that might be too much to spend at the guard position. Look for the Redskins to take an eventual Lauvao replacement in the draft.

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Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerCSN and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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If Redskins trade Kirk Cousins to 49ers, 5 prospects to consider with No. 2 pick

If Redskins trade Kirk Cousins to 49ers, 5 prospects to consider with No. 2 pick

It still seems like a long-shot the Redskins trade Kirk Cousins, but if there is one persistent rumor, it's that the San Francisco 49ers want the Washington passer. The story is too familiar at this point: New Niners coach Kyle Shanahan was in D.C. when Cousins was drafted and wants the quarterback to come run his offense in San Francisco. With the second overall pick, the 49ers have a tremendous asset they can dangle in trade talks.

<<<CLICK HERE TO SEE 5 PROSPECTS FOR THE REDSKINS AT NO. 2 PICK>>>

Whether or not any of this rumor is true, it sure makes for engrossing speculation. With the NFL Draft Combine next week in Indianapolis, NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah said he wouldn't be shocked to see the trade go down.

That's the backdrop. Beyond the debate of the merits of trading an established QB like Cousins, which is a very serious debate, there's also the notion of what player the 'Skins would select with the second overall pick.  

MORE REDSKINS: 2017 top heavy Cap could be a problem

It's worth examining the impact players available to Washington with the second selection in the 2017 NFL Draft, and the options are varied, including perhaps a new QB. Check it out. 

<<<LOOKING AT REDSKINS DRAFT PROSPECTS>>>

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