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DeAngelo Hall is looking forward to facing 'little brother' Tyrod Taylor


DeAngelo Hall is looking forward to facing 'little brother' Tyrod Taylor

Redskins defensive back DeAngelo Hall has known Tyrod Taylor since the Bills quarterback was in high school.

They’re from neighboring towns in the Tidewater region of Virginia. They both played at Virginia Tech. They even exchanged text messages a few days ago.

But that friendship will get put aside when Hall’s Redskins host Taylor’s Bills on Sunday in a game that has enormous playoff implications for the home team.   

“Ty is a great, great kid. I love him to death. He’s like a little brother to me,” said Hall, who is six years older than Taylor, 26. "…I’m probably one of his biggest fans. But I’m going to be out there trying to pick him off and knock his head off, too. It’s going to be fun, because I’ve never played against him, obviously.”

Hall said he was introduced to Taylor when Taylor was a rising star Hampton (Va.) High School. Hall immediately knew that Taylor would make a living playing football.

“Down in that area you always know the next hot, hot star,” Hall said. “Whether it was Ty, Percy [Harvin], E.J. Manuel, any of those guys who kinda came out a couple of years after all of us. You always know those guys.”

Hall added: “There’s only a handful of high schools that really produce these guys, these athletes.  …Somebody introduced me to [Taylor] and told me how good he was and I got a chance to watch him play and I was like, ‘Man, this kid is good.’ He ended up going to Virginia Tech and I kept following him, kept talking to him and he just became one of the fellas.”   

It’s been a year of big changes for both Hall and Taylor.

Hall has bounced back from Achilles and toe injuries and is now transitioning from corner to safety, a move that could extend his career by a few years. Meanwhile, Taylor, who backed up Joe Flacco for four seasons in Baltimore, is now a starter for the first time in his career and boasts the fifth-best passer rating in the league behind Russell Wilson, Carson Palmer, Andy Dalton and Tom Brady.

As much as Hall wants to get an interception, it won't be easy. Taylor has one of the best touchdown to interception ratios in the league, having toss 18 touchdowns and just five interceptions.

“We were talking yesterday, just texting,” Hall said. “He was like, ‘Man, it’s crazy, I’m about to play against you.’ I was like, ‘Yeah, it’s kinda crazy.’ He was like, ‘I can remember watching you in high school.’ And I was like, ‘I can remember rooting for you at Virginia Tech, and now I get a chance to go against you.’ But that’s the game. That’s the game, man.”

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As money skyrockets, don't expect Kirk Cousins to give discounts on open market


As money skyrockets, don't expect Kirk Cousins to give discounts on open market

Kirk Cousins repeatedly said his free agent decision will not be just about money. Be clear, however, that money will be a huge factor in this decision. 

After the Redskins traded with Kansas City to acquire Alex Smith before the Super Bowl, it became obvious Washington will move on from Cousins. Whether that means the quarterback simply walks away in free agency or the organization attempts a highly risky tag-and-trade scenario, regardless, Cousins will throw footballs for another franchise in 2018.

Cousins wants to choose where he will play via free agency, and might even file a grievance if the Redskins do deploy a third franchise tag to control his rights.

Assuming Cousins hits free agency, a new report out of New York suggests the Jets will pay "whatever it takes" to land the passer. That could even include a fully guaranteed contract, and will certainly get close to a $30 million a year price tag. 

A notion exists too that Cousins might take less to go to a winner, and many think that could be the Broncos. Denver won five games in 2017, same as the Jets, though the Broncos have a strong defense and have been getting particularly awful QB play. 

The important thing to remember for curious Redskins fans watching the Cousins saga unfold: Don't expect much, if any, discount. 

The quarterback himself made that clear. 

"There’s other quarterbacks that come after you and it would be almost a selfish move to hurt future quarterbacks who get in a position to have a contract," Cousins said last year on 106.7 the Fan.

The quotes came after the 2016 season but before the Redskins again used a franchise tag with Cousins for the 2017 season. Washington wanted to attempt a long-term deal with Cousins at that point, though the quarterback decided to not negotiate and instead play on the tag.

The point remains that Cousins, and his representatives, believe the quarterback has a duty to other players to maximize his earnings. 

"If you don’t take a deal that’s fair to you, then you’re also taking a deal that’s not fair to them and you’re setting them back as well. So there’s different reasons. You just do the best you can."

If he hits free agency, Cousins will likely sign the richest contract in NFL history. Those opportunities don't come around often, and the quarterback should take full advantage. 

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!

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Need to Know: Could Ty Nsekhe be the Redskins' answer at left guard?

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Need to Know: Could Ty Nsekhe be the Redskins' answer at left guard?

Here is what you need to know on this Monday, February 19, 23 days before NFL free agency starts.

Monday musings

—One possible solution to the left guard spot is perhaps being overlooked. Ty Nsekhe played there some last year, starting the game in Dallas and playing there until Morgan Moses got injured, forcing him to move to right tackle. Nsekhe is slated to be a restricted free agent but his return is likely. In December I asked Jay Gruden if Nsekhe might move to guard in 2018. “I think Ty is a big man and a very good tackle, but in the offseason when we have more time, maybe we can feature him at some guard when we’ve got all our guys back,” he said. “Feature him some” doesn’t mean that they will make him a starter; perhaps they want him to be the top option to fill in at four of the five OL positions. But it’s something to keep an eye on if they don’t land a left guard solution in free agency or the draft.

—When I posted about Albert Breer’s report that Kirk Cousins would file a grievance if the Redskins put the franchise tag on him in an effort to trade him, I pulled up a copy of the CBA to see the language on which Cousins could base his case. I read through the Article 10, which deals with the franchise tag twice and I saw nothing of it. But Mike Florio found it in Article 4, the one that deals with player contracts. “A Club extending a Required Tender must, for so long as that Tender is extended, have a good faith intention to employ the player receiving the Tender at the Tender compensation level during the upcoming season.” Since the Redskins clearly have no intention of employing Cousins after the Alex Smith trade, this seems to be a fairly simple case. In reality, it never is.

—I tweeted this last week:

However, possible cap casualties from other teams are not included in that group. That won’t turn the pool of players who will become available to sign into a bunch of potential franchise changers. Still, there could be a number of players in whom the Redskins could be interested in like RB DeMarco Murray, WRs Emmanuel Sanders and Torrey Smith, edge rusher Elvis Dumervil, and DL Brandon Mebane. A plus to signing players who have been waived is that they don’t count in the formula that determines compensatory draft picks. The Redskins have never really paid attention to that in the past but with potential high comp picks at stake if they lose both Kirk Cousins and Bashaud Breeland, this could be a good year to start.

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:

—NFL Combine (3/1) 10
—NFL Draft (4/26) 66
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 202

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