Redskins

Quick Links

Which Redskins signed in season should return in 2018?

byron_marshall_vs_nyg_usat.png
USA Today Sports Images

Which Redskins signed in season should return in 2018?

Two years ago, the Redskins were hit with a rash of injuries and they had to sign some players off of the street and give them important snaps almost immediately. Two such players were linebacker Mason Foster and defensive back Will Blackmon. They were supposed to be short-term fixes but they both signed new contracts and played key roles in 2016. Foster started 13 games at inside linebacker and Blackmon played in 15 games at safety.

The Redskins have had to go to the waiver wires, the streets, and other teams’ practice squads to find help this year. Who might they want to keep around in next year? Here are a few possible 2018 contributors:

G Arie Kouandjio—Did the Redskins make a mistake releasing their 2015 fourth-round pick in the cut to 53 in September? At the time, the move was not controversial as Kouandjio struggled in a few injury fill-in appearances in 2016 and didn’t do much to impress in training camp or the preseason. When he returned, he was thrust right into the lineup, playing 22 snaps against the Cowboys the day after he was signed away from the Ravens’ practice squad. Kouandjio has played well at left guard and the team should consider bringing him back as a restricted free agent.

MORE REDSKINS: PLENTY OF INCENTIVE TO WIN

C Tony Bergstrom—The journeyman was signed on October 25 and he moved into the starting lineup on Thanksgiving after Spencer Long went to injured reserve and Chase Roullier suffered a broken hand. He struggled against the Giants but he was steady against the Cowboys. Bergstrom, who will be an unrestricted free agent, can also play guard and he could be a valuable backup.

RB Byron Marshall—There really isn’t much of a question about keeping him here as he will be an exclusive-rights free agent as will rookie RB LeShun Daniels, assuming they are on the roster for the last game of the season. Marshall has an opportunity to carve out a role as someone who can fill in as the third-down back as well as take some carries when the starting running back needs a rest.

LB Zach Vigil—The Redskins were fortunate that Vigil was available when the inside linebacker spot was decimated with injuries. He had spent all of offseason with the team before getting released in September so he was a ready replacement who knew the defense. Vigil will be a restricted free agent and the Redskins have only two inside linebackers under contract in 2018.

RELATED: FIRST LOOK AT REDSKINS VS. STREAKING CHARGERS

K Nick Rose—Nobody has really noticed him since he was signed to replace the injured Dustin Hopkins and that’s usually a good thing for a kicker. After coming in with no NFL regular-season kicks on his record, he has made 91 percent of his field goals and 94 percent of extra points. Rose is capable of booming kickoffs through the end zone and he is third in the league in net kickoff yards. The test he has yet to take is the late field goal attempt for the win. Hopkins is an unrestricted free agent and it will be interesting to see if the Redskins bring him back or stick with the younger and, presumably, cheaper option in Rose.

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.

 

 

Quick Links

Instead of effort and preparation, Redskins get blah, blah, blah

redskins-chargers-usat.png
AP Images

Instead of effort and preparation, Redskins get blah, blah, blah

CARSON, Ca.  -- Blah. Blah. Blah. 

What's the best way to describe the Redskins effort in a blowout loss in Los Angeles?

Blah, blah, blah. 

At least that's the way Washington safety D.J. Swearinger described the team's practice effort in the sessions leading up to the Chargers game. And if the Redskins practice efforts lacked getting ready for the trip to L.A., it certainly showed on the field.

Unlike the blowout loss 10 days ago in Dallas, the Redskins never even competed against the Chargers. 

In the first quarter alone, the Chargers gained 10 first downs. The Redskins had one. 

RELATED: FIVE TAKEAWAYS FROM REDSKINS LOSS TO CHARGERS

No part of the Redskins roster performed well. Kirk Cousins had his worst game of the year, passing for just 151 yards. 

The defense gave up more than 250 yards of offense in the first half. Read that again: 250 yards of offense surrendered in the first half!

The game was so out of hand that Los Angeles sat down their starting quarterback Philip Rivers with 11 minutes left in the fourth quarter. Rivers had 319 yards passing and barely played in the fourth quarter!

If the stats seem overwhelmingly bad for the Redskins, it's because they were. After the game Washington head coach Jay Gruden said it felt like he had regressed as a head coach to let his team come out and put forth this kind of effort. 

Couple that with Swearinger's comments. 

After getting toasted in Dallas, most assumed the Redskins would show up in L.A.

They didn't.

What happens next?

It's hard to know. At points this season, the Redskins played with pride and passion.

RELATED: REDSKINS ONLY HAD ELEVEN SECONDS OF MOMENTUM VS. CHARGERS

In their first game without playoff hopes on Sunday, the Redskins played with neither. 

After the contest, Pro Bowl left tackle Trent Williams said the team had to find a way to again play with pride, especially as three games remain. 

Unless things change, the Redskins won't win another game. That will cause tremendous stress on the players, and the coaching staff. 

The Redskins have sustained an astounding amount of injuries this year. It's a big factor in the undoing of their season, especially as things limp toward the finish. Inexperienced players dot the lineup card all over the field.

Still, effort and preparation can come from experienced or inexperienced players. And it didn't on Sunday in Los Angeles. 

Without it, the final three games will be nothing but more blah, blah, blah. 

Quick Links

The Redskins had momentum for a grand total of 11 seconds against the Chargers

semaje-perine-redskins-chargers-usat.png
USA Today Sports

The Redskins had momentum for a grand total of 11 seconds against the Chargers

CARSON CITY, CA—A bottle of water sat on the podium where Jay Gruden stood to deliver the postmortem on the Redskins’ second straight ugly loss. It’s up there for every press conference in view of the cameras to promote the brand. About halfway through the press conference, the bottle fell off of the podium onto the floor.

Apparently, the bottle decided that the brand was not being helped by being associated with this debacle.

For a short while, it looked like the Redskins might be able to keep the game from turning ugly. They might be had a chance to overcome a rocky start that included Chargers scoring drives of 60 and 92 yards during which the Washington defense offered little resistance and an ugly interception thrown by Kirk Cousins that set up a field goal.

RELATED: Five takeaways from the Redskins' humiliating loss to the Chargers

The Redskins responded, driving 77 yards in nine plays for a touchdown. Cousins hit on some key passes and Samaje Perine tore off a few nice runs. The TD came on third down when Cousins bought time, rolled to his right, and hit Vernon Davis at the goal line. Even though the extra point was missed, it was 13-6 and if the defense could just get a stop after the kickoff . . .

But the glimmer of hope was short-lived. On the first play after the kickoff, Philip Rivers dropped back and found Tyrell Williams on a deep post with a few steps on Josh Norman. The pass was perfect and all of a sudden it was 20-6.

“That’s been the story right now,” said Gruden. “As soon as we make a big play, they answer with a bigger play and we can’t get momentum back. This game is about momentum and we had it for about four seconds. Then we miss the extra point and they throw a bomb on the next play. Unfortunately, this game is about momentum swings and we had it for 30 seconds.”

Gruden said his team had momentum for four seconds and 30 seconds so let’s see here. Davis scored with 10:13 left in the second quarter and Williams crossed the goal line with 10:02 left. So, the Redskins were within one score for 11 seconds.

Washington did have a chance to respond but they gave the ball up on downs on their next possession. The next seven times they had the ball they punted without moving the ball into Chargers territory even once. They didn’t score again until Bashaud Breeland picked off a Kellen Clemons pass and went 96 yards for a touchdown with 2:36 left in the game.

Momentum is supposedly fickle and changing jerseys often during the course of an NFL game. But except for those 11 seconds, Big Mo wore the blue shirts of the Chargers. Unless the Redskins can figure out how to change that starting next Sunday against the Cardinals, the last three weeks of the season will be very, very long.

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.