Quick Links

Need to Know: State of the Redskins, Week 11

USA Today Sports Images

Need to Know: State of the Redskins, Week 11

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, November 16, three days before the Washington Redskins play the New Orleans Saints at Mercedes Benz Superdome.


Today’s schedule: Practice 1 p.m.; Jay Gruden and Greg Manusky news conferences and open locker room after practice, approx. 3 p.m.

Days until:

—Redskins @ Saints (11/9) 3
—Giants @ Redskins Thanksgiving (11/23) 7
—Redskins @ Cowboys Thursday night (11/30) 14

Quick Redskins news hits

The Redskins rounded out their roster by signing inside linebacker Zach Vigil. He was with the team all offseason and in training camp and the preseason so he is familiar with the defense.

State of the Redskins

Note: I have decided to abbreviate the State of the Redskins post and omit the stats. I will occasionally include them when I break this out into a separate post.

Top storylines

The injury bug continues to bite—It’s the old two steps forward, one step back scenario. The Redskins have most of their starting offensive line back but now two starters, RB Rob Kelley and ILB Will Compton, have been put on injured reserve. Maybe they can take another couple of steps forward this week if they can get DE Matt Ioannidis and TE Jordan Reed back. But the way this season is going it will be time for another shoe to drop.

Rushing game missing—The Redskins have not rushed for 100 or more yards in a game since the loss to the Chiefs right before the bye. Not surprisingly, they have been 2-3 in that stretch, with the wins coming against the woeful 49ers and in near-miracle fashion in Seattle. Like most teams, the Redskins need a sustained running game if they are going to have sustained success.

No home cooking—The Redskins’ loss to the Vikings dropped them to 2-3 at FedEx Field. That’s after going 4-4 there last year. It’s probably not a coincidence that the last time they played well at home when they went 6-2 in 2015, they made the playoffs. Yes, the visiting team jerseys in the stands are annoying but it’s up to the Redskins to play well enough to keep their voices out of it and put a compelling product on the field, and a compelling experience in the entire stadium, to make ticket holders feel they are getting great value and hold on to their tickets.

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

Next three games

Sunday @ Saints—The Saints’ offense has remained strong while their defense has gone from awful to better than average. With Drew Brees as good as ever throwing the ball and running backs Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara pounding the rock, this is the toughest game left on the Redskins’ schedule.

Thanksgiving vs. Giants—It’s easy to look at this as a game where the Redskins carve up the Giants, a team in utter disarray and without many key players. But the team and fans would be well advised to look at New York’s Sunday night win in Denver a few weeks ago and not write off their NFC East rivals.

Nov. 30 @ Cowboys—The Redskins go back-to-back Thursday nights for the first time ever. The Cowboys will be without Ezekiel Elliott, who won’t have a court hearing on his suspension being lifted until the day after this game. They looked bad without Elliott, and perhaps more importantly, left tackle Tyron Smith against the Falcons. We will see how they look in two weeks.

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.

Tandler on Twitter

In case you missed it

Quick Links

Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—D-line scoop, Alex Smith's big deal

USA Today Sports Images

Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—D-line scoop, Alex Smith's big deal

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, March 24, 33 days before the NFL draft.  

The Redskins week that was

A look at some of the most popular posts and hottest topics of the week on Real Redskins and NBC Sports Washington.

Free agency update: What's next for the Redskins on the D-line? The Redskins have been casting out lines for defensive linemen since before free agency officially started but they haven’t been able to reel one in. Part of the issue might be that they know that Vita Vea and Da’Ron Payne are likely to be available in the draft. They have to balance spending big on a lineman vs. being able to get one pretty cheap for the next five years.

Redskins make a D-line contract change, gain roster flexibility—Speaking of the D-line, the team negotiated the removal of a salary guarantee for one player to give themselves more flexibility when it comes time to cut the roster down to 53 in September. See the post for details.

Redskins guarantee Alex Smith a whopping $71 million in new contract—In the words of Joe Biden, this is a big f-----g deal. It showed that the Redskins aren’t afraid to pay a quarterback big money if they think it’s the right guy. It should be noted that whether or not they chose the right guy is something that remains to be seen. Although the post shows that it’s plausible for the Redskins to terminate the deal after three years, I anticipate Smith playing out at least four if not all five years of the contract.

Redskins add another ex-Cowboy as they sign Scandrick—Orlando Scandrick has struggled with injuries the past few years and Redskins fans did not greet the news of his signing with great enthusiasm, to say the least. To point out the bright side, his contract is not pricey by NFL terms ($2.6 million cap hit this year, no guaranteed money beyond a $1 million signing bonus) and from what I have been able to gather it’s possible that change of scenery might give him a boost for a year or two.

Tweet of the week

Well before free agency started, I wrote that the Redskins’ top priorities in free agency should be to get extensions done for Smith, Brandon Scherff, and Jamison Crowder. They should have about $15 million to work with after a few more free agent signings and that would be plenty to get all of those extensions done. And if they do score a big free agent signing, it would be worth it to restructure the contract of someone like Ryan Kerrigan to get them done.

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.


Days until:

—Offseason workouts begin (4/16) 23
—Training camp starts (approx. 7/26) 124
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 169

In case you missed it

Quick Links

Eagles' Michael Bennett allegedly injured elderly worker; arrest warrant issued

USA Today Sports Images

Eagles' Michael Bennett allegedly injured elderly worker; arrest warrant issued

Philadelphia Eagles lineman Michael Bennett has been indicted on felony abuse for allegedly pushing an elderly NRG Stadium worker during Super Bowl LI.

Bennett was indicted by the Harris County, Texas district attorney's office for injury to the elderly — which is intentionally and knowingly causing injury to a person 65 years or older, according to a press release from the Harris County Sheriffs' Office.

A warrant has been issued for Bennett's arrest.

The 66-year-old paraplegic stadium worker was attempting to control field access when Bennett allegedly pushed her. 

The maximum penalty Bennett faces is ten years in prison in addition to a $10,000 fine.


Bennett — whose brother Martellus played in that Super Bowl for New England — was a member of the Seattle Seahawks during the incident and was in attendance as a noncompetitive player.

The NFL has been made aware of the situation and is looking into the matter, according to Pro Football Talk.

The 32-year-old 10-year NFL veteran could potentially face NFL discipline under the league's personal conduct policy.