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Need to Know: 11 predictions for the 2017 Redskins defense

Need to Know: 11 predictions for the 2017 Redskins defense

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, July 13, 14 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp in Richmond on July 27.


The Redskins last played a game 193 days ago; they will open the 2017 season against the Eagles at FedEx Field in 59 days.

Days until:

—Franchise tag contract deadline (7/17) 4
—Preseason opener @ Ravens (8/10) 28
—Roster cut to 53 (9/2) 51

11 predictions for the Redskins’ defense

Not all of these can be characterized as bold, but here goes with one prediction for each of the 11 anticipated 2017 defensive starters for the Redskins.

DE Jonathan Allen—He’ll post six sacks and two forced fumbles. I think he’ll get off to a slow start as he adjusts to the NFL and gradually become a force in November and December.

NT Phil Taylor—The bold prediction here is that he makes the team and starts. Assuming he has been able to get his knees into shape during his two years on the sideline, he’s the most viable candidate.

DE Stacy McGee—He will break his career high in sacks. That’s not saying much because his best sack season came last year, when he had 2.5. But he will be a solid addition to the line.

OLB Preston Smith—He triples his career interception total, getting two more picks. Coverage is not necessarily his strength but I can see him batting one in the air at the line and picking it off and getting another one like he had against the Vikings, when the QB thought he was throwing it past him but Smith made the play with his length.

OLB Ryan Kerrigan—The least bold prediction I will make in this post is that he will get to double-digit sacks this season. He’s done it two of the last three years and missed out in 2015 by just a half.

ILB Zach Brown—He had a good season making plays last year but he was better as a rookie with the Titans. I’ll take the under on the three interceptions he got that year but I’ll go over on the two fumble recoveries and 5.5 sacks.

ILB Will Compton—He will start 16 games but play fewer snaps than Brown and Mason Foster. They like his smarts and ability to play chess at the line with the opposing quarterbacks. But they want more speed on passing downs and Brown and Foster provide that.

CB Josh Norman—Norman works hard to fix his flaws and he will get better at catching the ball. Put him down for six interceptions and a Pro Bowl selection.

CB Bashaud Breeland—Breeland has at least two interceptions in each of his three NFL seasons and he had three last year. Put him down for another three.

S Su’a Cravens—It’s hard to get a handle on him with the position change. But if he can get an interception as a nickel linebacker I have to think that he can get three at strong safety.

S D. J. Swearinger—He has forced one fumble in the last two season combined. Swearinger forces three this year.  

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 @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Redskins getting thin at receiver with two more injured wideouts out on Sunday


Redskins getting thin at receiver with two more injured wideouts out on Sunday

In August, Redskins fans would freak out if they heard Jordan Reed and Terrelle Pryor would both miss a November game.

In November, that news doesn’t carry much worry.

Washington coach Jay Gruden announced that Reed and Pryor, along with center Spencer Long, won’t play Sunday against the Saints.


Reed hasn’t played in a few weeks as he is dealing with a hamstring injury. It seemed he might have returned last week before a setback slowed down his progress.

In his place, Vernon Davis has proved to be a sturdy backup capable of some big games.

Long injured his knee and while he played last week, he did not practice this week.

Not having Pryor is a bit of a surprise. His ankle injury popped up this week and he will see a specialist next week to examine the joint. In the middle of a disappointing season, the Redskins offense won’t lose much with his absence.

Elsewhere on the injury list, a number of players will be questionable for Sunday’s contest against the 7-2 Saints.

Perhaps most important, Trent Williams is questionable but will probably play.


Receivers Ryan Grant and Brian Quick are expected to play after undergoing concussion protocol, but that will leave the Redskins with only three fully healthy wideouts: Jamison Crowder, Josh Doctson and Maurice Harris.

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Redskins' Josh Norman earns Week 10 NFLPA community MVP


Redskins' Josh Norman earns Week 10 NFLPA community MVP

Redskins' Josh Norman is using his platform as a professional football player to help those in need, and this week it earned him NFLPA's community MVP.

The cornerback has been raising funds for youth enrichment programs in the D.C. area, as well as starting a campaign to help those affected in Puerto Rico by Hurricane Maria. 

Norman's foundation, Starz24, provides backpacks and school supplies for children in need and creates initiatives for students at Jefferson Middle School Academy in D.C.. He recently raised almost $100,000 for Starz24's Imagination Team Rooms, a STEM-based "makerspaces" that will be placed in several inner city middle and high schools. 

Then, when Puerto Rico was devastated by Hurricane Maria back in September, Norman started a social media campaign to help those affected. The campaign brought in $150,000. Norman also donated $100,000 of his own with part of the money going to the Boys & Girls clubs in Puerto Rico.

I look at it as I’m on this earth to help people and help them be the best that they can be,” Norman said. “I have the means to do so. I’m going to do that.

Every week during the regular season, the NFLPA selects a NFL player who is making a difference in their community. They are going to be making a $10,000 contribution to his foundation or a charity of his choice in addition to an in-kind donation on behalf of their supporting partner, Delta Private Jets.

I am so honored to be recognized by the NFLPA for my work in the community,” Norman said. “All of this work is bigger than football. I want to make an impact in the lives of children who need it most and to help develop those children to help change the future.