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53-man roster final prediction

53-man roster final prediction

Cuts are coming soon; here is my final stab at who will make the Washington Redskins final 53-man roster

Quarterback (3): Campbell, Collins, Brennan—This has been set for a while.

Running back (4): Portis, Betts, Cartwright, Mason—At his Friday press conference, Zorn was noncommittal about Mason making it so he's still on the bubble to an extent.

Wide receiver (6) Moss, Randle El, Thrash, Kelly, Thomas and McMullen—In June, if you'd told anyone that Billy McMullen would be on the final roster you would have been laughed at. Now, given the injuries to Kelly and Mix and the long learning curve of Thomas, McMullen is the #4 receiver. I don't see Kelly going on IR as some have speculated. One receiver is likely to be inactive on game day anyway so you might as well see if Kelly can heal and contribute later in the season.

Tight end (3): Cooley, Davis, Yoder

Fullback (1): Sellers

Offensive line (9): Samuels, Kendall, Rabach, Thomas, Jansen, Fabini, Heyer, Reinhardt, and Geisinger—In a change from my last prediction, I'm cutting Andrew Crummey and keeping Geisinger. I think he's shown that he's someone who can step right now as needed. Crummey can gain some seasoning on the practice squad.

Defensive line (9): Taylor, Carter, Griffin, Evans, James, Golston, Montgomery, Alexander, Wilson—I think that of all the players who were on their final chances last night, Wilson came through as well as any of them. Since there only are six linebackers worth keeping, they can add him as a ninth D-lineman.

Linebackers (6): Fletcher, Washington McIntosh, Blades, K. Campbell, Fincher—Fincher was very active last night and in my eyes he earned a roster spot.

Corners (5): Springs, Rogers, Smoot, Tryon, Torrence—I discussed the Tryon situation here. I'm still not buying that Richardson will beat him out. If there is concern here, a veteran waiver wire pickup is more likely to take Tryon's place than is Richardson.

Safeties (4): Landry, Doughty, Horton, and Moore—It's possible that Justin Hamilton will sneak on to the roster if they decide to cut or trade Mason or shelve Kelly.

Specialists (3): Albright, Brooks, Suisham—I have absolutely no conviction about Brooks making it as the punter. He didn't exactly blow Derrick Frost right out of the water and the word is that Suisham prefers Frost as his holder.


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Redskins make a D-line contract change, gain roster flexibility

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Redskins make a D-line contract change, gain roster flexibility

One head-scratcher from over the weekend was the Redskins’ apparent decision to hold on to defensive end Terrell McClain despite the fact that his 2018 base salary of $3.25 million would become fully guaranteed as of 4 p.m. on Sunday.

McClain missed four games with a toe injury last year and when he was playing he was not one of the top performers on the line. Perhaps he will improve in his second year in the defense but his performance certainly didn’t warrant a fully guaranteed salary.

Sunday came and went, and McClain was still on the roster. However, there was a change regarding the eight-year veteran. According to John Keim of ESPN, the Redskins and the player agreed to remove the full guarantee of the 2018 salary and change it to an injury-only guarantee.


The change will help alleviate what could be a numbers crunch down the road. The Redskins normally carry six defensive linemen. They have four keepers in Jonathan Allen, Matt Ioannidis, Stacy McGee, and Anthony Lanier. They have been trying to sign a free agent D-lineman like Johnathan Hankins and if they fail to do that they are likely to take one early in the draft. That would mean that five of the roster spots are spoken for.

If McClain had the guaranteed salary that might lock him into that sixth spot, leaving Ziggy Hood, a favorite of the coaching staff, on the outside looking in. The removal of the full salary guarantee levels the playing field between McClain, Hood and another possible free agent or draft pick when it comes to competing for that last roster spot.

If McClain loses out in the battle for a roster spot in training camp releasing him would save about $3.4 million in 2018 cap space. However, there would be a dead cap charge of $2.5 million in 2019. If his salary had remained fully guaranteed his departure would have caused a net cap charge of about $2 million.


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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Need to Know: Looking at the Redskins' defensive depth chart after early phase of free agency

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Need to Know: Looking at the Redskins' defensive depth chart after early phase of free agency

Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, March 20, 37 days before the NFL draft.  

Looking at the 2018 depth chart—defense

The Redskins are likely to make a few more free agent acquisitions and there is the draft, but the depth chart is beginning to settle in. Let’s take a look at where the defensive side of the ball stands now. The offense was covered yesterday.

Defensive line: Jonathan Allen, Matt Ioannidis, Stacy McGee
Backups: Terrell McClain, Anthony Lanier, Ziggy Hood

I wrote this on Monday afternoon wondering if I would have to edit it to add Jonathan Hankins but that has not happened yet. I have to think that they will use a top draft pick on a D-lineman if they don’t land one in free agency. That could create some competition between Hood and McClain for the last roster spot.

Linebackers: OLBs Preston Smith, Ryan Kerrigan; ILBs Mason Foster, Zach Brown
Backups: Ryan Anderson, Zach Vigil, Josh Harvey-Clemons, Martrell Spaight

Again, I thought I might have to edit this because of the return of Junior Galette or the addition of Pernell McPhee but as it is, the Redskins are looking for an additional reserve edge rusher to go with Anderson. There might only be room for two backup inside linebackers between Vigil, Harvey-Clemons, and Spaight.

Defensive backs: CBs Quinton Dunbar, Josh Norman; FS Montae Nicholson, SS D.J. Swearinger
Backups: Orlando Scandrick, Fabian Moreau, Josh Holsey, Deshazor Everett

I debated including Su’a Cravens here because he is on the roster, but I think that the odds that he will be on the 53-man roster in September are slim. If he doesn’t return they will need some help at safety. You can count on Scandrick playing in the slot. They seem to like both Dunbar and Moreau better on the outside and Scandrick can give Holsey a chance to develop inside.

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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Days until:

—Offseason workouts begin (4/16) 28
—Training camp starts (approx. 7/26) 130
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 174

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