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Need to Know: 5 under the radar Redskins who will be playmakers in 2014

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Need to Know: 5 under the radar Redskins who will be playmakers in 2014

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, August 30, eight day before the Redskins open their season against the Texans.

Nickel coverage

The preseason is finally over and we can move on to the games that actually count. But the practice games were useful in confirming a few things I’d seen in training camp and earlier regarding some of the lesser-known players on the team. Here are five under-the-radar players who will be on everyone’s radar by the end of the season.

WR Ryan Grant—Their fifth-round draft pick is as fundamentally sound as any rookie at any position. He makes up for his lack of blazing speed with solid route running and excellent hands. Sooner rather than later he will be the fourth receiver and contributing.

FB Darrel Young—The converted linebacker has been on the roster since 2010 but he hasn’t done much offensively. Jay Gruden will change that this year. Young won’t become a full-fledged offensive weapon by any means but he should make a few memorable plays running and receiving.

ILB Keenan Robinson—The third-year player who has only a half a season of experience has drawn some attention due to the fact that he’s replacing London Fletcher. But he’s a legitimate playmaker. He will make plenty of mistakes but his speed and coverage skills should allow him to make some plays from the Mike linebacker position.

DE Chris Baker—Sure “Big Swaggy” gets attention due to his size and his big personality. But he is much more than just flash; Baker is a rare combination of size, speed and agility. He will end up in the backfield getting a sack or tackle for loss on a regular basis.

CB Bashaud Breeland—The rookie fourth-round pick will get burned from time to time—news flash, every cornerback does—but will also has the capability of making highlight quality interceptions on occasions.

If you have any questions about what's going on at Redskins Park, hit me up in the comments. I'll answer all questions as soon as I can get to them. And I'm always on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Stat of the day

—Final preseason kickoff stats: Zach Hocker 12 kickoffs, 3 touchbacks, 6 returned inside the 20. Kai Forbath 8 KO’s, 1 TB, 1 in 20, 1 out of bounds. If Hocker ends up getting the nod that could be the reason why.

Timeline

Today’s schedule: Off day, no availability; Roster must be reduced to 53 by 4 p.m.

—It’s been 244 days since the Redskins played a game; in eight days they play the Texans in their 2014 season opener.

Days until: Home opener vs. Jaguars 15; Redskins @ Eagles 22; Thursday night Giants @ Redskins 27

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What can the Redskins learn from the Eagles run to the Super Bowl?

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What can the Redskins learn from the Eagles run to the Super Bowl?

For Redskins fans, it's probably a tough pill to swallow that the Eagles are in the Super Bowl. Making matters worse, Philadelphia got to the championship game without their star quarterback Carson Wentz.

Beyond the feelings that fandom incites, which are real and severe, what does the Eagles' breakthrough season mean for Washington? Let's take a look. 

Perhaps the most incredible part of the Eagles' success is that wunderkind QB Wentz is not at the helm. The second-year player was an MVP candidate all season but got injured late in the year. Nick Foles, the Philly backup, took over and played well in both Eagles' playoff wins. 

Does that mean much, if anything, for the Redskins? 

Some will argue it means Washington should not look to invest top dollar in QB Kirk Cousins. Foles is not considered a top-flight quarterback and still was able to maneuver his squad to the Super Bowl.

Whether or not that argument makes sense, Redskins fans should prepare to hear a lot of it over the next two weeks. 

There is also a theory that the Redskins should eschew spending at QB in favor of spending on defense. 

That may very well be the right move, but don't look to the Eagles to support the theory. 

Philadelphia spent $47 million on the defensive side of the ball in 2017. On offense, they spent $56 million.

What is definitely true?

The Eagles played terrific football in the postseason, and catapulted through the NFC by playing the underdog role.

Redskins fans might hate it, but the Eagles absolutely earned their Super Bowl appearance. 

That doesn't mean Redskins fans have to like it. 

Philadelphia has never won a Super Bowl. 

Now, standing in the way of their first Lombardi Trophy: Bill Belichick, Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. 

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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When is Super Bowl 2018? Date, time, location, odds, TV channel, halftime performer

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When is Super Bowl 2018? Date, time, location, odds, TV channel, halftime performer

Super Bowl LII (52) will feature the New England Patriots/ Jacksonville Jaguars (AFC Champion) against the Minnesota Vikings/ Philadelphia Eagles (NFC Champion) at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota on February 4, 2018.

If they go on to advance, the Vikings would become the first team to ever ‘host’ the Super Bowl in their home stadium. They are the third to play the game in their home state. Minnesota will be looking for their first Super Bowl title in five tries, the most appearances by any team without a championship.

Philadelphia is looking for their first title ever as well, and doing it with a back-up quarterback Nick Foles. They have been the underdog in every game this postseason; it would be no different in the Super Bowl.

New England is looking for their third Super Bowl over the past four years and their sixth championship since 2001. However, their path in the AFC Playoffs is arguably the easiest in their history. A win by the Patriots would tie the Pittsburgh Steelers for the most in NFL history with six.

The new kids one the block, the Jaguars are one win away from their first Super Bowl appearance in what is already the best year ever for the franchise. If Jacksonville were to pull it off, they would be the tenth team in NFL history to win in their first Super Bowl appearance.

Super Bowl LII Information:

When is Super Bowl 52?

6:15 pm ET, February 4, 2018

Who is playing in Super Bowl 52?

New England Patriots/ Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Minnesota Vikings/ Philadelphia Eagles

Where is Super Bowl 52?

U.S. Bank Stadium, Minnesota

How can I watch Super Bowl 52 on TV?

NBC

Where can I stream Super Bowl 52?

The Super Bowl can be streamed for free on NBCSports.com and on the NBC Sports app.

Online with no cable TV: fubtoTV (Try for free)

Who are the announcers for Super Bowl 52?

Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michele Tafoya, Heather Cox

Who is performing the Super Bowl 52 halftime show?

Justin Timberlake is the Pepsi Super Bowl halftime performer. It is his third Super Bowl performance, previously performing in Super Bowl XXV and more famously in XXVIII with Janet Jackson.

What are the odds for Super Bowl 52?

New England Patriots: 6/5
Minnesota Vikings: 7/4
Philadelphia Eagles: 7/1
Jacksonville Jaguars: 8/1