Redskins fans have plenty to be thankful for on this day:
- The Cowboys, Giants, and Eagles—This seems a bit odd, but stay with me. The Redskins get to play six games a year against three of the most storied teams in the entire NFL, teams with long traditions (well, except the Cowboys) of championship-caliber play (well, except the Eagles). How could you get pumped up for games against Detroit or Cincinnati twice a year? An NFC East game is never, ever just another game.
- Ryan Boschetti—This guy is an all-time, all-effort football player, and that's not even the best thing about him. He is the consummate team player. I'll never forget talking to him in training camp when Kedric Golston and Anthony Montgomery were rookies. He told me that he was spending a lot of time with them both in practice and in meetings, teaching them about the pro game and about the Redskins' defense. The two rookies made the roster, Boschetti was cut. It's great to have him back.
- London Fletcher—Calling him a student of the game is faint praise. He's the professor of the Redskins defense, sometimes even giving coaches tips on how it needs to be run. His anticipation for the play at times makes you think that he lined up in the other team's huddle and that this radio headset is also tuned into the frequency of the offense. As soon as the ink was dry on his contact he became the team leader on defense.
- Chris Horton—The rookie burst onto the scene with a three-takeaway performance in a game that he didn't even know he was starting until that morning. While the takeaways have not come as easily lately, Horton is learning on the job, he's not getting beaten in coverage often, and he displays a great nose for the football. Not bad for a seventh-round pick.
- Clinton Portis—Clearly, he brings on a lot of the criticism he takes himself with comments like the one he made about the offensive line. But his productivity speaks for itself. Did you know that his average of 113.5 yards per game from scrimmage is the fourth-best of all time? Only Jim Brown, LaDainian Tomlinson, and Barry Sanders have better averages. Sometime next year Portis will surpass 10,000 career rushing yards. And in the what have you done for me lately category, he leads the NFL in rushing and is the engine that makes the offense of the 7-4 Redskins run.
- Jim Zorn—The stay-medium but play suddenly, judiciously dice-rolling, hip-hip-hooraying head coach of the Redskins appears to have been quite a find for the Redskins. Few are describing him as the worst hire in the history of the NFL as they were last February when he got a quick promotion from offensive coordinator to head coach. He has scaled back his brutal honesty with the press to some degree, not wanting to alienate himself from his players, but he still makes conversations interesting. His offense still is learning on the job and needs a few new pieces but Zorn has a vision and he is working towards it.
The 2017 NFL Draft isn't officially here, but it's very near. And for the Washington Redskins, this year's NFL Draft brings with it a lot of intrigue.
The Redskins are coming off an 8-7-1 season and are in the middle of an offseason that's included a lot of change. Therefore, the team needs to ace their 2017 NFL Draft and bring in a rookie class with a lot of talent.
How will they do that, though? Starting with pick No. 17, will the Redskins draft a player based on need or based on their board? And which prospects would be the best fits for Washington?
Scroll through CSNmidatlantic.com's 2017 Redskins draft preview for the most in-depth coverage of the team's draft you'll find before the big night.
What will the Redskins' draft strategy be for the 2017 Draft?
What are the Redskins' biggest draft needs?
- Feeling a safety? Malik Hooker and Budda Baker both figure to be in the mix when the Redskins first pick on Thursday night.
What are mock drafts projecting the Redskins to do at No. 17?
Other Redskins draft storylines that Redskins fans should know
Draft busts: 15 draft busts taken in Round 1
NFL Draft history: The best players taken 17th overall
From February to July of 2016, Redskins fans anxiously waited for news that quarterback Kirk Cousins would agree to a contract extension with the franchise. It never happened. It's late April, and Cousins and Washington are on the same track in 2017.
While fans grow wary of the lack of movement towards a new deal, some league sources think contract talks will heat up as the calendar draws closer to the July 15 deadline.
That doesn't mean Cousins can't have a good sense of humor about things.
To be clear, this is another year of Cousins working to promote the Holland Hospital in his hometown in Michigan. This is not an extension with the Redskins. And it gave a number of Redskins fans an outburst of excitement before a stark realization. Below are a few Twitter responses:
Considering how testy the contract talks between the 'Skins and Cousins representatives have been at times, it's good to see the club's all-time single season passing yards record holder be able to laugh about things.
It doesn't, however, mean much about the actual negotiations between Washington and Cousins.
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