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Need to Know: Cousins, Crowder closing in on Redskins records

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Need to Know: Cousins, Crowder closing in on Redskins records

Here is what you need to know on this Monday, December 28, six days before the Washington Redskins travel to Dallas to play the Cowboys.

Five numbers of note from the 2015 Redskins

137—In 2014 the Redskins were outscored by 139 points, scoring 301 and giving up 438. Through 15 games this year their point differential is minus-2 (354 scored, 356 allowed). That is a remarkable 137-point improvement, the equivalent of nearly 20 net touchdowns in one season.

63.6—The percentage of their red zone opportunities that the Redskins turn into touchdowns. That is the sixth best in the NFL and a substantial improvement over their 2014 red zone conversion rate of 47.9 percent.

120—The number of passing yards that Kirk Cousins needs to become the Redskins’ all-time single season leader in passing yards. He has 3,990 yards and the team record is held by Jay Schroeder, who passed for 4,109 yards in 1986.

5—The number of receptions that Jamison Crowder needs to set the team rookie record for receptions in a season. Crowder has 54 and Art Monk (1980) holds the record with 58. Crowder needs just two catches to pass Charley Taylor (55 in 1964) for second place. (Note: I am using the NFL’s definition of the term rookie here. In 1985 Gary Clark caught 72 passes in his first year in the NFL but he had played in the USFL so the league does not recognize him as a rookie).

47—The number of touchbacks on kickoffs that Dustin Hopkins has 14 games into his Redskins career. It also happens to be the exact same number of touchbacks that Kai Forbath had as the Redskins’ kicker in three years from 2012-2014.

Timeline

Today’s schedule: Players off, no availability

Days until: Redskins @Cowboys 6; start of NFL playoffs 12

In case you missed it

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Who is Nick Rose? Three things you should know about the new Redskins kicker

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Who is Nick Rose? Three things you should know about the new Redskins kicker

Here are three things you need to know about Nick Rose, who was signed on Tuesday to replace Dustin Hopkins.

1) His next NFL kick will be his first one

Rose has spent offseason time with the Falcons and 49ers since entering the league in 2016 after his collegiate career at Texas. However, he has never attempted a regular season field goal or PAT, so the first time he does so with the Redskins will be the first time ever for him as a pro.

The 23-year-old certainly has potential: He was one of the nation's top touchback producers in 2014 and 2015 for the Longhorns, so distance on kickoffs and field goals shouldn't be an issue (this video of him nailing one from 80, yes, 80, backs that up). What remains to be seen is whether he can split the uprights for Washington.

For what it's worth, Hopkins was totally inexperienced in the NFL when he first signed with the Burgundy and Gold, too.

MORE: UPDATED NFL POWER RANKINGS - 'SKINS IN TOP 10

2) He can make kicks in unconventional ways

While this doesn't come across as something Jay Gruden would ever want Rose to try in, say, this Monday's game in Philly, Rose can sink chip shots while simultaneously completing a backflip.

Ever seen Adam Vinatieri do that? Nope, didn't think so.

3) He beat out at least three other candidates for the job

With Hopkins likely done for the year with a hip issue, the Redskins worked out a handful of replacement options on Tuesday.

It was Rose, though, who emerged with a contract. He earned it over at least three other guys, including veterans Mike Nugent and Andrew Franks. Now he must bring that strong leg, as well as some accuracy, when called upon to ensure the 'Skins don't miss out on any points on a weekly basis.

Making kicks in the middle of backflips is fun, sure. But making them in front of national TV audiences instead of a YouTube audience is probably more fun. Let's see if Rose has what it takes to stick around.

RELATED: IN CROWDED NFC, WHY NOT THE REDSKINS?

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Redskins kicker Dustin Hopkins headed to injured reserve, per sources

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Redskins kicker Dustin Hopkins headed to injured reserve, per sources

Redskins kicker Dustin Hopkins will likely not play again this year, a source with knowledge of the situation tells our JP Finlay.

The team placed Hopkins on the injured reserve list, which means he's out at least eight weeks. To replace him, the Redskins signed Nick Rose, per NFL Network.

In his third season with Washington, Hopkins had made nearly 82 percent of his field goals this year. He made 12 of 13 extra points, but missed a very important extra point in Sunday's win over the 49ers.

Hopkins had a very strong leg, capable of touchbacks on kickoffs nearly every time the situation called for it. 

Rose is yet to play in the NFL but spent time with the 49ers. He kicked collegiately at the University of Texas.

As a senior in Austin last year, Rose made 13 of 17 field goals and 38 of 39 extra points.