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Need to Know: 5 'on the bubble' Redskins whose jobs are safe


Need to Know: 5 'on the bubble' Redskins whose jobs are safe

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, June 13, four days before the start of Redskins minicamp.

Nickel coverage

Here are five Redskins who many fans think are in danger of not making the 53-man roster whose jobs are, in reality, safe.

Niles Paul—Many complain because he doesn’t produce much as a tight end. But he’s a core special teams guy and the focus on that area will keep him on the roster.

Ryan Grant—Sure, the rookie fifth-round pick is not very fast. But he has a knack for getting open and holding on to the ball when it gets thrown in his direction. During OTAs he did line up with RG3 and the other starters for some series. That’s not a sure sign he’s in the plans but a good indicator.

Tyler Polumbus—I guess this constitutes a flip-flop since when I did my “way too early” 53-man roster projection a month ago, Polumbus wasn’t on it. But I don’t think they’re going to force Morgan Moses to start before he’s ready and I think the chances are good that he won’t be ready by September.

Darrel Young—Jay Gruden’s Bengals ran with just one running back on 83 percent of their snaps last year, leading many to wonder if the team would even keep a fullback on the roster. Like Paul, Young is a core special teams player and it’s hard for me to picture him not being one of the 53 best players, regardless of how underutilized his primary position might be.

Stephen Bowen—Many think that Bowen will fall victim to his injury, age, salary cap number, or some combination of all three. I do think a contract redo might be coming but I’m hearing he’s in the plans.

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—Redskins defensive back E. J. Biggers was born on this date in 1987.

—It’s been 166 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be 86 days until they play the Texans in their 2014 season opener.

Days until: Minicamp starts 4; Training camp 41; Preseason opener vs. Patriots 55

In case you missed it

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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

It looks like Ryant Grant has found his new home, again.

After a failed physical with the Ravens, James Jones of NFL Network reports Grant plans to sign with the Colts.


Grant originally agreed to a four-year, $29 million deal with the Ravens, before the team pulled the offer citing an ankle injury that dated to the Redskins' final regular-season game, according to reports.

Baltimore eventually signed Michael Crabtree to a three-year deal, while Grant had visits with the Colts and Raiders.

His agent, Rocky Arceneaux, says Grant has been working out, running routes, and his ankle had been cleared by Dr. Robert Anderson in a second opinion.

In 2017 with the Redskins, he appeared in all 16 games, with 45 receptions for 573 yards and four touchdowns.


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Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source


Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source

The Redskins hosted Sylvester Williams for a free agency visit on Tuesday morning, per a source with knowledge of the situation. 

Williams played in 2017 with the Titans, logging 20 tackles in 11 starts. Tennessee released Williams this offseason, just one year into a three-year, $16 million deal. 

Drafted in the first round by the Broncos in 2013, the 6-foot-3, 313 lbs. Williams' stat line has never really popped. That isn't uncommon for a nose tackle though, as the job is less about tackles than it is holding leverage against the interior of an offensive line. 


Should the Redskins sign 29-year-old Williams, it would represent the first true nose tackle free agency addition since Terrance "Pot Roast" Knighton joined the team in 2015 from Denver. In an ironic twist, Williams took over at nose in Denver when Knighton left for Washington, and posted his best season as a Bronco. 

Washington restructured its deal with Terrell McClain, reported first by ESPN, which could allow more flexibility to add another defensive lineman. That could come in the draft, but the club has been very active talking with free agents to play on the defensive front. 

On Monday, Johnathan Hankins and Pernell McPhee visited with Redskins officials in Ashburn. Hankins would carry the heaviest price tag, but his past performance would also indicate the most promise. 

McPhee is an edge rusher with enough bulk to play against the run as well. Williams compares more with Hankins, and could be seen as the secondary option.

Among 79 nose tackles Pro Football Focus graded, Williams ranked 36th. For comparison, Bengals star Geno Atkins ranked No. 1, Dontari Poe ranked 26th, former Redskin Chris Baker ranked 65th and current Redskin Ziggy Hood ranked 79th. 

It's also worth noting that since the Titans released Williams, should the Redskins sign the nose tackle, his contract would not count towards the NFL compensatory pick formula. 

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