Quick Links

Shanahan flips approach on coin toss

mike_shanahan_vs.bucs_.png

Shanahan flips approach on coin toss

One constant for the Redskins this season has been deferring the ball until the second half after winning the opening coin flip. 

That, however, changed Thursday.

Coach Mike Shanahan reversed course at Cowboys Stadium and elected to receive the opening kickoff. His reason? It’s playoff time, baby.

“What I always do in playoff time is always take the ball. I’ve always done that,” Shanahan told reporters. “I just said, ‘Hey, you go in the playoffs and everything else really doesn’t matter. It’s your last game and you’re playing for it all.”

Shanahan said he would have elected to receive the opening kick against Philadelphia, too. But the Eagles won the flip.

It’s a different approach for Shanahan, who had previously deferred the ball until the second half each of the six times the Redskins won the flip in Weeks 3-9. When asked about deferring last month, Shanahan explained that he was playing the percentages after being shown a statistic that suggested teams “that defer win well over 60-percent.”

The Redskins’ desperate situation, though, has forced the veteran coach to rethink that approach. It also meshes with comments he made last week about an increased sense of urgency around the team these days.

“We’re treating each game as your final game because you look at the records and know what you have to do,” Shanahan said. “That’s the way we approach it.”

The Redskins are 2-4 when electing to defer and 1-0 when choosing to receive (although they did not score on their opening drive against the Cowboys). 

Quick Links

NFL Draft 2017 Redskins live blog: First round draft updates, analysis

NFL Draft 2017 Redskins live blog: First round draft updates, analysis

The first round of the 2017 NFL Draft is finally upon us. Finally.

For the Washington Redskins, the 2017 NFL Draft represents a chance to find impact players, a search that begins with the 17th pick overall in the first round. All those discussions about whom the Redskins will select with their first pick will be answered Thursday night during the NFL's biggest offseason event.

To keep up with the NFL Draft, you'll need two things: A screen to watch it on and this live blog. Redskins fans and NFL fans who want to stay up to date with surprise picks, trades, analysis and anything else draft-related will want to keep this page open all night.

RELATED: FINAL 2017 NFL MOCK DRAFT

What: 2017 NFL Draft, Round 1
When: Thursday, April 27, 2016 at 8:00 p.m. ET
Where: Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, Penn.
TV Channel: ESPN, NFL Network
Live Stream: WatchESPN App

Here's what's happened so far. Let's head to the live blog:

REDSKINS 2017 NFL DRAFT TRACKER

4:45 PM - We're three hours away from the start of the 2017 NFL Draft, but it looks like the Cleveland Browns are close to finalizing their choice for the No. 1 overall pick.

4:30 PM - JP Finlay is on the scene in Philadelphia for the 2017 NFL Draft. Several Redskins fans are out and about early.

4:15 PM - Oh, this is going to be fun. Former Redskins GM Scot McCloughan is reportedly advising other teams on their picks at the draft. 

4:00 PM - And with that No. 17 pick, the Redskins could go in several different directions. There will be plenty of defensive lineman and pass rushers to choose from, as well as several high-end cornerbacks. JP Finlay identified the 22 players considered in-play for the Redskins at No. 17.

3:45 PM - The Redskins have the No. 17 pick. With the 2017 NFL Draft starting at 8:00 p.m., we are expecting the Redskins to make their pick at rough 10:15 p.m. ET.

3:30 PM - Want to get to know the NFL Draft prospects? Want to go inside the war room with a former GM? Ever wondered what a player evaluation looks like? Former NFL GM Charley Casserly and CSN's Julie Donaldson have you covered in our CSN Draft Room. It's your go-to source for 2017 NFL Draft material.

3:15 PM - The CSN team is all over the place today. Be sure to follow them on Twitter. Redskins Insider JP Finlay is at the Draft in Philadelphia. Redskins writer Rich Tandler and CSN anchor Chick Hernandez are at Redskins Park in Ashburn, Va. and NFL analyst Trevor Matich is in the CSN Draft Room. Be sure to follow @CSNRedskins for all your draft night coverage. 

3:00 PM - Welcome to CSN's live draft tracker for the 2017 NFL Draft on Thursday night.

Quick Links

Morgan Moses serves as latest reminder that some draft picks take time

Morgan Moses serves as latest reminder that some draft picks take time

In the lead-up to the 2014 NFL Draft, NFL.com labeled Morgan Moses a "developmental project," touting his size and ability to move but also saying the Virginia prospect's inconsistency and up-and-down effort forced some teams to shy away from him.

Other sites, meanwhile, pointed to Moses' high ceiling as well, but no one was quite sure where the lineman would be selected. Eventually, the Redskins took him in the third round, 66th overall.

His rookie year, though, was a disappointment. He didn't log much time with the Redskins and when he did, he looked lost (especially on this infamous Monday Night Football play). 

The next year, however, he seized the starting right tackle job and has started in every game since, at times looking dominant. And now, the 26-year-old has a new, expensive contract extension to celebrate, after the Redskins made him the second-highest paid right tackle in the league.

MORE REDSKINS: WILL MCCLOUGHAN ADVISING OTHER TEAMS AFFECT THE REDSKINS?

The timing of the extension — just hours before the 2017 NFL Draft — is what's especially fitting, because Moses is another prime example of how being patient and developing a middle round draft pick can really work out.

Many times, fans or analysts will use words like "project" or call a player "raw." In both instances, a negative tone is often used. With Moses, that was the case, and after his nondescript first season there wasn't a ton of hope surrounding him (remind you a bit of Josh Doctson?).

But the Redskins were committed to improving him and Moses was committed to improving, too. Now, Washington has a pair of massive and talented tackles on each end of their offensive line, and No. 76 is No. 2 in professional football when it comes to money at his position. Both parties are happy.

Therefore, if (and when) the Burgundy and Gold picks up a member or members of this year's class who bring with them phrases like, "He may need to sit and learn behind a veteran" or "He has some tools but has yet to put them together," just remember not to fret. It's tempting to grade draft hauls the moment after the event's conclusion, but the real stars sometimes don't emerge until a few years down the road.

RELATED: STEP INSIDE CSN'S DRAFT ROOM FOR SCOUTING REPORTS AND DRAFT VIDEOS