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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Receiver decisions, injury woes

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Receiver decisions, injury woes

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, October 28, one day before the Washington Redskins play the Dallas Cowboys at FedEx Field.

Timeline

Today’s schedule: No media availability

Days until:

—Redskins @ Seahawks (11/5) 8
—Vikings @ Redskins (11/12) 15
—Giants @ Redskins Thanksgiving (11/23) 26

Key injury update

Out: ILB Mason Foster (shoulder, IR), C Spencer Long (knees)
Questionable: OT Trent Williams (knee), OT Morgan Moses (ankles), G Brandon Scherff (knee), C Josh Norman (rib), OLB Preston Smith (groin)
You can find the injury report article here. To engage in some speculation here, I think that all three of the starting O-linemen will go, although I’m not as confident about Scherff as the other two. And any of the three could come out before the end of the game. Norman is nearly 100 percent. Smith should start but he could be on a limited snap count.

The Redskins week that was

Some of the most popular posts and hottest topics from the last week on www.NBCSportsWashington.com and www.RealRedskins.com

Five takeaways from Philly including a silver lining—In two of the Redskins’ losses they had an early lead and failed to hold it. And they got scares against the Rams and 49ers because they failed to keep the hammer down, turning potential routs into close games. The Redskins have outscored their opponents 30-7 in the first quarter and 85-57 in the first half. But they need to adjust as they are getting outscored 90-55 in the second half.  

Wide receiver decisions: A swing and a miss—Some interesting thoughts from J.P. Finlay on how the Redskins handled the Jackson-Garçon free agency decisions this offseason. The most eye-opening fact presented is that the Redskins don’t have a wide receiver in the top 90 in receiving yards. I agree with Finlay that paying Garçon and/or Jackson made no sense for this team at this time. As to the replacements, we have 10 more games to see how the bodies of work of Josh Doctson and Terrelle Pryor turn out.

Mounting injury concerns—Several of our top posts dealt with injury news. It’s been a while since they have been this banged up going into a game with Mason Foster going to injured reserve, two other players out, and 10 players questionable. Usually, players who are questionable end up playing but if gutting it out through an injury significantly diminishes the effectiveness of the likes of Trent Williams, Brandon Scherff, and Josh Norman, the Redskins could have a very tough mountain to climb tomorrow.

Is Cousins the long-term answer for the Redskins at QB? I got a ton of feedback about this post, in which I wondered if a Redskins team with a highly-paid Kirk Cousins at quarterback could compete with an Eagles team with a cheap Carson Wentz and a Cowboys team paying Dak Prescott a fourth-round salary. I didn’t draw a grand conclusion but just pointed out that it’s a tough decision for the front office to make. Take a look at the post and let me know what you think.

Don't let a skewed Redskins stat fool you—A couple of late scores have distorted how the Redskins’ defense performs in two-minute situations in each half. They haven’t been as good as you’d like them to be with the clock winding down but they aren’t the worst, as a graphic on ESPN implied.

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

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From the locker room

Zach Brown on dealing with the injury to Mason Foster, who is headed to IR with a shoulder issue

Posted by Rich Tandler on Friday, October 27, 2017

In case you missed it

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Need to Know: The five highest-paid 2018 Redskins

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Need to Know: The five highest-paid 2018 Redskins

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, February 24, 18 days before NFL free agency starts.

I’m out this week so I’ll be re-posting some of the best and most popular articles of the past few months. Some may have slightly dated information but the major points in the posts still stand. Thanks for reading, as always.

The five highest-paid Redskins in 2018

Originally published 1/12/18

This is how the five highest-paid Redskins per their 2018 salary cap numbers stack up as of now. The list could change, of course during free agency and if a particular quarterback returns. Cap numbers via Over the Cap.

CB Josh Norman, $17 million—The Redskins do have a window which would allow them to move on from Norman. His $13.5 million salary for this year doesn’t become guaranteed until the fifth day of the league year so it would be “only” a $9 million cap charge to move on from Norman, who turned 30 in December. Don’t look for that to happen but the possibility is there.

OT Trent Williams, $13.86 million—He is one of the best left tackles in the business. Those of you out there who have advocated moving him to left guard should look at this cap number, which is way out of line for what a team can afford to pay a guard. At his pay, he needs to be playing on the edge.

OLB Ryan Kerrigan, $12.45 million—He has delivered double-digit sacks in each of the two seasons that his contract extension has been in effect. That’s good value in a league that values the ability to get to the quarterback.

TE Jordan Reed, $10.14 million—The Redskins knew that he might have a year like last year when he played in only six games when they agreed to Reed’s five-year, $50 million extension. They can live with one such season. If he has another one in 2018 they may rethink things.

G Brandon Scherff, $6.75 million—The fact that a rookie contract is No. 5 on this list is a good sign that, as of now, the Redskins’ cap is not top heavy like it was last year. The top three cap hits from Norman, Williams, and Kirk Cousins totaled $59 million, which was about 35 percent of the cap. This year the total cap numbers of the top three come to $43.3 million, 24.3 percent of the estimated $178 million salary cap.

Next five: OT Morgan Moses ($5.4 million), TE Vernon Davis ($5.33 million), DL Stacy McGee ($4.8 million), DL Terrell McClain ($4.75 million), S D.J. Swearinger ($4.33 million)

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

Timeline  

Days until:

—NFL Combine (3/1) 5
—NFL Draft (4/26) 61
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 197

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Martavis Bryant could make sense for the Redskins, at the right price

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Martavis Bryant could make sense for the Redskins, at the right price

A 2017 midseason trade for Martavis Bryant made no sense for the Redskins. A 2018 offseason trade for Martavis Bryant, however, might make sense for the Redskins. 

Bryant is on the trade block, per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, and will be an intriguing prospect for receiver-needy teams across the NFL. In parts of three seasons with the Steelers, Bryant has 17 touchdowns and a 15.2 yards-per-reception average. 

A big play threat from any place on the field, Bryant would immediately make the Redskins receiving unit more athletic and explosive. 

It's not all good news with Bryant, though.

He was suspended for the entire 2016 season after repeated drug violations and caused some distraction for Pittsburgh during the 2017 season when he asked for a trade via social media. 

MORE: CAN YOU GUESS THESE REDSKINS BASED ON THEIR COMBINE NUMBERS?

Is the talent enough to overcome the off-field distractions? Many would say it is. 

Last year, in just eight starts, Bryant grabbed 50 catches for more than 600 yards and three TDs. In their lone playoff loss to the Jaguars, Bryant caught two passes for 78 yards and a TD. 

Remember, too, the Steelers have an explosive offense, and Bryant is coupled with Antonio Brown on the receiver front along with Ben Roethlisberger at quarterback and Le'Veon Bell at running back. The Pittsburgh offense is loaded. 

Washington's offense is not nearly the prolific unit that the Steelers send out, but Jay Gruden does design a good offense. 

The real question surrounding any talk of trading for Bryant is the cost.

The Redskins are not in a position to send away any more draft picks this offseason after giving up a third-round pick, in addition to Kendall Fuller, to acquire Alex Smith. Bruce Allen and the Redskins front office need to improve their team in plenty of spots, and the team's draft picks are quite valuable. 

Bryant only has one year remaining on his rookie deal, and it's hard to balance that sort of short-term investment with the value of adding a rookie committed to the team for at least four years. Perhaps a late-round pick would make sense, but it would need to be a sixth-rounder. 

This could be one of those rare situations in the NFL where a player for player swap could work, though pulling that type of maneuver requires a lot of moving parts. 

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!