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State of the Redskins, Week 10: A shuffle coming in the secondary?

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State of the Redskins, Week 10: A shuffle coming in the secondary?

Here is where the Redskins stand in Week 10 of the NFL season.

Record: 3-5, 3rd in NFC East
vs. NFC East: 1-1
vs. NFC: 3-2
vs. AFC: 0-3
Home: 3-1
Away: 0-4

Key numbers changes from 2014-2015

 

Rankings (through Sunday’s games)

Offense (yards/game): 329.0 (29th)
Defense (yards/game): 272.9 (21st)
Passer rating offense: 82.6 (24th)
Opp passer rating: 97.6 (24th )
Yards/rush attempt: 3.6 (30th)
Opp. yards/rush attempt:
 4.8 (30th)
DVOA through Week 9 (Football Outsiders): -8.8% (19th)

Top three storylines:

Code Red redux—After the expected loss to the Patriots, the Redskins sit at 3-5, the same record they have at the midway point last year. In 2014 they promptly lost six straight games and rapidly fell out of competition for anything. They can get off to a good start to avoiding a repeat of last year by beating the 4-5 Saints on Sunday. A win could have them within a game of first place in the NFC East. A loss with a trip to Charlotte to play the undefeated Panthers coming up next could trigger another slide.

Still getting ground up—The Redskins have had problems both running the ball and stopping the run. Oh, wait, you’ve heard that before? Well, it will continue to be a storyline here until the results change.

Shuffle in the secondary—It looks like changes are coming to the secondary. Some, like the returns of Chris Culliver and DeAngelo Hall to the field, are health related. Others, like the possibility that Jeron Johnson will get a shot at string safety, are coaches’ decisions. In any case, if the secondary gets stronger maybe Joe Barry will feel more comfortable sending extra pressure at opposing quarterbacks and we may see more big plays.

Next three games

Sunday vs. Saints (4-5)—The Saints had a nice little winning streak going until the lost to the Titans (1-6 going into the game) at home, allowing rookie Marcus Mariota to throw four TD passes in the process. Historically they are not as good a team playing outdoors on grass; we will see.

November 22 @ Panthers (8-0)—They have let blowouts turn into close games in each of the last two weeks but they beat the Colts and Packers to remain unbeaten. Cam Newton isn’t lighting it up statistically in the passing department but he is in the MVP conversation because he is getting it done with his legs and in the clutch.

November 29 vs. Giants (5-4)—The Giants are just a bad matchup for the Redskins. New York has won six of the last seven games between the two teams and most of them haven’t been competitive. Home division games are always important and this one will be no exception, particularly if the Redskins lose at Carolina.

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Mock drafts, cap bargains

Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Mock drafts, cap bargains

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, April 22, five days before the April 27 NFL draft.

Timeline

Days until:

—Redskins rookie camp (5/12) 20
—Redskins OTAs start (5/24) 32
—Training camp starts (7/27) 96
—Redskins opener vs. Eagles (9/10) 141

The Redskins week that was

Redskins full 2017 schedule released—Even with the Caps and Wizards in full playoff mode, the DMV stops to take a look and see when the Redskins will be playing. The Thanksgiving game was surprising. It’s another working day but I worked at various places since I was 14 and last year was the first time I’ve had to work on Thanksgiving so I can’t complain too much about working two in a row. It’s a small price to pay for having the best job in the world.

Don't count out any RB for Redskins at 17—Yeah, I know that NFL teams aren’t supposed to take running backs in the first round any more. But that is one of those trends that comes and goes. In 2013 and 2014 there were no RBs taken in the first. Todd Gurley and Ezekiel Elliott in the last couple of years began to shift the thinking. If the Redskins think that Dalvin Cook or Christian McCaffrey can help them win games more than any other player on the board they should pull the trigger.

Rise of Patrick Mahomes could bring big payoff for Redskins—It seems likely that quarterbacks Deshaun Watson and Mitchell Trubisky will be taken before the Redskins pick at No. 17 goes on the clock. That means that two players in whom the Redskins might be interested will be available, pushed back by the quarter backs. Could Mahomes, out of Texas Tech, push a third player back to Washington. The buzz is that a team might grab him in the first half of the first round.

The Redskins' five best salary cap bargains for 2017—When I started pulling the numbers for this post I thought I’d find more key players with salaries of under $1 million. I only found three and one of them is the kicker. This means that they don’t have very many late-round or undrafted players who are contributing a lot of value. They need more out of players like Anthony Lanier, Matt Ioannidis and Maurice Harris. That is how a team thrives in the salary cap era. A couple of Saturday picks could make or break this draft.

Redskins mock 2.0 goes offense early, defense often—There are a lot of ways the first 16 picks of this draft can work out. It seems almost certain that everyone’s favorite first-round pick, a stud defensive lineman, won’t be a realistic option on the board. This could send things in an odd direction for the Redskins. It’s fun to do a mock and I’ll do one or two more prior to draft day but there are too many variables to think that it has a high degree of accuracy. 

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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Chris Thompson will be with Redskins for at least one more year, team announces

Chris Thompson will be with Redskins for at least one more year, team announces

Coming into Friday the Redskins had two unsigned restricted free agents. Now, they have just one. 

The team announced that running back Chris Thompson has re-signed. If he signed his restricted free agent tender, he will be under contract for one year with a salary of $2.7 million. 

The announcement came just as the deadline for RFA’s to sign offer sheets with other teams passed. That meant that Thompson had no other practical options than to sign with the team. 

MORE REDSKINS: ONE REASON EACH GAME ON THE SCHEDULE WILL BE MUST-SEE TV

Still unsigned is linebacker Will Compton. He got a restricted free agent tender for $1.8 million. We will see how his situation plays out. 

Last season, Thompson was the team’s third-down back and he played in all 16 games for the first time in his career. He posted 68 rushing attempts for 356 yards and three touchdowns and 49 receptions for 349 yards and two touchdowns. All those stats were career highs for Thompson, a fifth-round pick of the Redskins in 2013.

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.