Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, September 20, five days before the Washington Redskins visit the New York Giants.
—Today's schedule: Off day, no availability
—Days until: Browns @ Redskins 12; Redskins @ Ravens 19; Eagles @ Redskins 26
First thoughts on Redskins vs. Giants
—Here’s a look at what we might expect to see from the New York offense on Sunday:
—In the lead up to Norman-Beckham Round 2 the Redskins are making Josh Norman available to the media for 10 minutes on Wednesday afternoon. His press conference will be at about 3:20. Don’t be late. My quick early thought is that they will move Norman to stay near OBJ a lot more often then they matched him up with Antonio Brown and Dez Bryant. Bashaud Breeland has had trouble with Beckham in the past and it’s probably better to match up Norman. The best way to battle Beckham is to rattle him and Norman can do that.
—Breeland could have his hands full with receiver Sterling Shepard. So far the rookie leads the team in receiving yards with 160, one more than Beckham.
—It’s funny what a difference a few plays can make. If Terrance Williams can get out of bounds in Week 1 and if Drew Brees can muster another touchdown on Sunday, the Giants could well be 0-2 and the finger pointing in New Jersey would be well underway especially with a new coach and no playoff appearances since 2011. Instead, they are 2-0 and on top of the world.
—Can Kirk Cousins get it together in time to save the Redskins’ season? I don’t know but he’s done it before. You don’t have to think back any further than the second half of the Bucs game at FedEx Field last year. But just because he has done it before doesn’t mean he can do it again. The real question isn’t if he can turn it around, it’s why is he playing poorly in the first place? Progress isn’t necessarily linear as we’ve learned but this seems like quite a precipitous dip. Perhaps defenses have adjusted to him but that doesn’t account for him overthrowing Jamison Crowder early or underthrowing Josh Doctson later on. Is it money/contract pressure? The amateur psychologist in many observers thinks that may be the answer.
—Will this be the week the Redskins start running ball some more? Last year the Giants were only slightly better against the run than the porous Redskins but so far this year they have been fairly stingy, giving up 71 yards per game. Perhaps the Redskins can try to keep Eli Manning, Beckham, and company off the field by handing the ball to Matt Jones 20 times, maybe give Robert Kelley a few carries as well. I mean, only the Redskins coaches have really stopped Washington’s running game so far, right?
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In case you missed it
In some circles of modern culture, producing shocking commentary or content seems like the top goal. Being shocking gets clicks, gets attention, and in turn, gets dollars.
On NFL Draft night, nothing should be shocking. Remember, last season there was no way Jonathan Allen would fall to the Redskins at 17. There was no way Kansas City would trade up for QB Patrick Maholmes. There was no way Chicago would trade up for Mitchell Trubisky. But all those things happened.
Sure, for months draft experts have expounded about what will happen, but the truth is, once the Browns are on the clock, nobody actually knows anything.
With that in mind, let's look at a bunch of options that should not shock Redskins fans.
- Don't be shocked if Washington takes Minkah Fitzpatrick. They want him.
- Don't be shocked if the Redskins draft Da'Ron Payne over Vita Vea. Washington loves Payne's potential to be a disruptor in the pass game and his incredible strength.
- Then again, don't be shocked if the 'Skins take Vita. Plenty of folks like him too.
- Don't be shocked if a team makes a move for Louisville QB Lamar Jackson. That could happen after the Redskins pick at 13, but Washington's pick could also prove important in the race for the former Heisman Trophy winner.
- Derwin James will be on the 'Skins list, but don't be shocked if he goes off the board before the Redskins pick.
- Don't be shocked with a trade back, but remember that isn't the goal. With four QBs expected in the Top 10, an elite talent should make it to Washington at 13. If that happens, the Redskins should take advantage of adding a blue chip to their squad.
- Don't be shocked if Virginia Tech LB Tremaine Edmunds ends up wearing the Redskins draft hat. Also, don't be shocked if he plays some outside linebacker in the Washington 3-4 scheme, not just the inside LB role most project for Edmunds.
- Don't be shocked if a seemingly sure thing slips all the way to 13. Perhaps that's Quenton Nelson? Or Denzel Ward? Remember, there was no way Jon Allen was supposed to fall to 17 last year.
There are some things Redskins fans should be shocked by.
- Washington should not trade up.
- Washington should not draft a running back at 13 unless Saquon Barley is available. He won't be.
- Washington should not draft a wide receiver at 13.
- If one of the top four QBs is available at 13, Washington should vigorously work the phones to move the pick. Move down a few spots and get Payne should be the exact plan in that scenario. Arizona at 15 needs a QB.
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NBC Sports Washington’s four-part digital series ‘E-Boyz’ -- chronicling the illustrious past, decorated present and bright future of the Edmunds family -- is NOW LIVE. Check out a new episode daily, leading up to the 2018 NFL Draft. Watch the fourth episode above and more here.
After this weekend's NFL Draft, the Edmunds family will go from having one son in the league to three.
Trey is already on the Saints, but Tremaine and Terrell aren't pros just yet. So, when will they be taken? Here's a collection of predictions from NBC Sports Washington's NFL crew regarding the middle and youngest Edmunds brothers.
JP Finlay: The Niners at nine. John Lynch won't be able to get past Edmunds' combination of size and speed, and the elite potential of the just 19-year-old. Remember, too, San Francisco might not have Reuben Foster this fall.
Rich Tandler: Tenth to the Bears. Physically, he is a double for Brian Urlacher and he worked out well enough for the Bears that he is headed for the Hall of Fame this year.
Mitch Tischler: No. 9 to the San Francisco 49ers. We all know Kyle Shannahan loves him some offensive threats but getting an edge rusher that could tally double digit sacks and play both inside and out is going to be too tough to pass up at nine.
Pete Hailey: No. 10 and the Raiders. Jon Gruden won't let the dynamic Edmunds fall any further.
JP Finlay: Kansas City in Round 3. They could use additional depth in the secondary and that franchise knows value when they see it.
Mitch Tischler: The Steelers in Round 3. He fits their scheme, has an nfl body and measured very well at the Combine.
Pete Hailey: Round 3 to the Cardinals. Terrell can learn from Antoine Bethea then fill in for him once Bethea moves on.