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Need to Know: Redskins fan questions—Young players on the rise

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Need to Know: Redskins fan questions—Young players on the rise

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, December 22, two days before the Washington Redskins play the Denver Broncos at FedEx Field.


Today’s schedule: Practice 12:05 p.m.; Jay Gruden and news conference, open locker room after practice approx. 1:30

Days until:

—Redskins @ Giants (12/31) 9
—NFL free agency starts (3/14/18) 82
—NFL Draft (4/26/18) 125

Answering fan questions

Here are some questions I answered from fans on my Twitter feed (@TandlerNBCS) and on my Facebook page ( Any time you have a question, hit me up. I'll usually get back faster on Twitter but I do monitor both constantly. Thanks. 

JP Finlay wrote a post listing eight quarterbacks who, at this moment, appear to be available options to replace Kirk Cousins if he leaves. Taking a veteran from the list, I think I’d go with Sam Bradford. He is the closest match for the offense that the Redskins are running and he is a very accurate passer. He does have injury issues but all free agent QBs have issues. For a draft pick, I’ll go with Lamar Jackson of Louisville. Yes, he would require adjustments in the offense but he could be the 2018 version of Deshaun Watson. There will be other options as the offseason unfolds but those are a couple to chew on for now.

If Cousins leaves, the need for a quarterback trumps everything. If he is staying, I think they need to look very hard at the inside linebacker spot. They will need someone to either replace Zach Brown or to pair with him. On offense, left guard is a position the Redskins will need to fill. It seems unlikely that Shawn Lauvao will be back. Perhaps an easy solution might to re-sign free agent Spencer Long and put him at left guard. Otherwise, they will need to find a solution in free agency or in the draft. It also looks like wide receiver will be a need.

Lanier and Ioannidis have flashed this year so I don’t think either would be all that “sneaky.” I’m not sure about Davis; he may be one to look out for in 2019. The young player I’m hearing the most buzz about is CB Fabian Moreau. He hasn’t played much on defense this year but they have been very impressed with his performance in practice. He could start at some point next year. They also are very high on S Montae Nicholson, who was good when healthy, so they could have a couple of good, young defensive backs for a number of years. 

I’m going to go with special teams coach Ben Kotwica. The special teams have been awful this year (27th per Football Outsiders). They haven’t made any big plays and they have been responsible for plenty of them by the opposition. The teams have been pretty good the last couple of years, and between that and the injuries, he should keep his job this year. But another bad year no matter what happens and he will be out.

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

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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

It looks like Ryant Grant has found his new home, again.

After a failed physical with the Ravens, James Jones of NFL Network reports Grant plans to sign with the Colts.


Grant originally agreed to a four-year, $29 million deal with the Ravens, before the team pulled the offer citing an ankle injury that dated to the Redskins' final regular-season game, according to reports.

Baltimore eventually signed Michael Crabtree to a three-year deal, while Grant had visits with the Colts and Raiders.

His agent, Rocky Arceneaux, says Grant has been working out, running routes, and his ankle had been cleared by Dr. Robert Anderson in a second opinion.

In 2017 with the Redskins, he appeared in all 16 games, with 45 receptions for 573 yards and four touchdowns.


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Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source


Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source

The Redskins hosted Sylvester Williams for a free agency visit on Tuesday morning, per a source with knowledge of the situation. 

Williams played in 2017 with the Titans, logging 20 tackles in 11 starts. Tennessee released Williams this offseason, just one year into a three-year, $16 million deal. 

Drafted in the first round by the Broncos in 2013, the 6-foot-3, 313 lbs. Williams' stat line has never really popped. That isn't uncommon for a nose tackle though, as the job is less about tackles than it is holding leverage against the interior of an offensive line. 


Should the Redskins sign 29-year-old Williams, it would represent the first true nose tackle free agency addition since Terrance "Pot Roast" Knighton joined the team in 2015 from Denver. In an ironic twist, Williams took over at nose in Denver when Knighton left for Washington, and posted his best season as a Bronco. 

Washington restructured its deal with Terrell McClain, reported first by ESPN, which could allow more flexibility to add another defensive lineman. That could come in the draft, but the club has been very active talking with free agents to play on the defensive front. 

On Monday, Johnathan Hankins and Pernell McPhee visited with Redskins officials in Ashburn. Hankins would carry the heaviest price tag, but his past performance would also indicate the most promise. 

McPhee is an edge rusher with enough bulk to play against the run as well. Williams compares more with Hankins, and could be seen as the secondary option.

Among 79 nose tackles Pro Football Focus graded, Williams ranked 36th. For comparison, Bengals star Geno Atkins ranked No. 1, Dontari Poe ranked 26th, former Redskin Chris Baker ranked 65th and current Redskin Ziggy Hood ranked 79th. 

It's also worth noting that since the Titans released Williams, should the Redskins sign the nose tackle, his contract would not count towards the NFL compensatory pick formula. 

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayNBCS for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!