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Need to Know: Will any Redskins players be traded before the draft?

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Need to Know: Will any Redskins players be traded before the draft?

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, April 5, 25 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.

On the weekends I do quick-hit answers to some good questions that don’t require an in-depth reply. Let’s get going with one from the Real Redskins Facebook page:

Despite what you calendar may say, Gern, June 1 has already come and gone, at least in terms of NFL teams cutting players while trying to save 2015 cap room. The CBA permits each team to designate two players it releases after the start of the league year as post-June 1 cuts. It has the same cap effect but the player can hit the market during the prime of free agency while there still is money to be made. And the team avoids the prospect of having a player they know they are going to cut coming into the facility, working out, and possibly getting injured. So, for the past six years or so there have been nothing but very minor moves on June 1. Those cuts are already done. McCloughan and company will continue to evaluate any players that are released.

https://twitter.com/habimaki88/status/582235888261963776

I’m not sure I see a market for either player, at least not one that would generate an offer the Redskins would have a hard time turning down. Cousins was relegated to the bench after throwing interceptions in bunches last year and not reacting well to them. Garçon might be an attractive player but I don’t see a team giving up much for a good, not great, player with $7.5 million in salary and bonuses this year and $8 million in 2016. If there is any interest I’d say it comes after the draft if some teams didn’t get what they wanted in Chicago. But for right now I think that both players are worth more to the Redskins than they could get in return for them.

From what can be determined at this point, left guard is up for grabs only to the extent there is supposed to be competition for every position. It would be surprising of Shawn Lauvao was not the starting guard in Week 1. That could change if they draft a guard early on and that player is able to push out the starter. I’m doubtful that Josh LeRibeus has much of a shot at ousting Lauvao.

I would say that the chances of Moss being on the 53-man roster for Week 1 are very slim and it seems unlikely that he would even be signed to get a shot. But you can’t rule it out entirely, especially if the Redskins don’t draft a receiver or suffer an injury at some point. Last week Jay Gruden said that they would keep him in mind and might consider Moss after the draft so there is the proverbial chance.

https://twitter.com/readytowinitall/status/582227940643106816

I don’t know if you’re crazy or not but a wide receiver could well be the best player available at No. 5. I’m partial to Kevin White but Amari Cooper could well be a better prospect. The Redskins will take a long look if those two are on the board. And, despite what some may tell you, there is a need at wide receiver. Both Pierre Garçon and DeSean Jackson both will turn 30 next year and will have cap hits in excess of $10 million and $9 million, respectively. If you don’t see a need there, you don’t know what a need is.

Timeline

—It’s been 98 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be about 161 days until they play another one.

Days until: Redskins offseason workouts start 15; 2015 NFL Draft 25; Redskins training camp starts 116

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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Redskins Playbook: After worst to first in 2016, how strong will NFC East be?

Redskins Playbook: After worst to first in 2016, how strong will NFC East be?

When the Redskins won the NFC East in 2015 with a 9-7 record, most critics dismissed the division as weak. That theory was largely proved right when the Redskins got stomped at home in the first round of the playoffs by the Wild Card Green Bay Packers.

In 2016, however, the NFC East largely looked like the best division in football, or at least among the best divisions. Dallas won 13 games and took the NFC East title, the Giants won 11 and took the NFC's top Wild Card spot. The Redskins had a chance to make the playoffs in Week 17, but unceremoniously lost and fell short.

Still, Washington won eight games and Philadelphia won seven. In fact, the NFC East was the only division in the NFL without a team that lost 10 or more games. The AFC West - a division that some would argue was tougher than the NFC East - still had the Chargers and their 5-11 record.

What does it mean for 2017? If anything the only team expected to regress would be the Cowboys, and their regression could easily still have them looking to win around 10 games. 

The Eagles have improved with young, star QB Carson Wentz. New York will be interesting, as they have some age at various spots on their roster but still feature a two-time Super Bowl winning QB in Eli Manning and one of the best defenses in the NFL.

As for Washington? The defense should be much improved. It almost has to be as the 2016 version struggled significantly. If the defense can just be average (and I'd argue it could push for Top 15) the offense should continue to move the ball well. Producing in the red zone needs to look different than last season too.

The NFC East looks like a beast yet again. It would be no surprise if both NFC Wild Cards come from the division.

Let us know what you think in the comments. 

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Need to Know:Redskins faced one of the toughest schedules in NFL in 2016

Need to Know:Redskins faced one of the toughest schedules in NFL in 2016

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, May 28, 16 days before the Washington Redskins start their mandatory minicamp on June 13.

Timeline

Days until:

—Training camp starts (7/27) 60
—Preseason opener @ Ravens (8/10) 74
—Season opener Eagles @ Redskins (9/10) 105

Note: I am on vacation this week in the Outer Banks. Need to Know will be a mix of new content and some of the most popular posts of 2017.

Redskins faced one of NFL’s toughest slates in 2016

(originally posted January 28)

As the Redskins came off their 2015 playoff season and looked towards 2016, one thing jumped out. Even before any games were played it looked like their path to a repeat playoff appearance would be difficult, more so than it was when they went 9-7 and took the NFC East title.

The 2015 schedule looked fairly easy when applying the eyeball test. They played just two games against teams that made the playoffs and those teams, the Patriots and Panthers, plus the Jets were the only teams they faced that finished the season with winning records.

The eyeball test was borne out by the numbers. According to the stat gurus at Football Outsiders the Redskins faced the 28th toughest schedule in terms of the DVOA of opposing defenses and the opposing offenses added up to the 24th most difficult.

The going was considerably tougher in 2016. The Redskins played seven games against teams that were in the playoff field. The defenses they faced stacked up as the toughest group of any NFL team. They played nine games against teams that finished in the top 11 in defensive DVOA. The offenses they faced were a little better than average, ranking 13th as a group.

While the Redskins’ season was widely regarded as a disappointment, it would be reasonable to say that given vastly improved quality of the competition that they did well in only having their record drop by half a game.

Of course, the goal is to be good enough to prosper and make the playoffs no matter what mix of teams the luck of the draw happens to put on the schedule. They will need to get there in a hurry. Awaiting the Redskins on their 2017 schedule are seven 2016 playoff teams plus one more that finished the year with a winning record.

The fortunes of NFL teams can’t always be predicted in advance, especially more than seven months before the season kicks off. But it’s safe to say that the 2017 slate will be challenging. If they are going to improve their record they are going to have to improve their level of play dramatically.

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.