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Need to Know: Five things to look for in Redskins vs. Patriots


Need to Know: Five things to look for in Redskins vs. Patriots

RICHMOND—Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, August 7, 11 days before the Redskins host the Browns on preseason Monday night football.

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Here are five things to look for in tonight’s Redskins-Patriots preseason game:

How does RG3 play? Don’t get there or tune in late or you might miss Griffin’s night. Jay Gruden said that the starters will take about 10 snaps. That means that they could get off a nice drive on their first possession and then call it a night. Griffin might throw about a half a dozen passes before sitting down. Of course, those passes will be put under the microscope for any signs of how he might fare this year.

The pass rush—That’s the key to the defense and earlier this week they couldn’t really unleash it on Brady, who was wearing the red no-contact jersey. Brian Orakpo, Ryan Kerrigan, and company will not be under any restrictions tonight. Brady gets rid of the ball quickly so they will have to get off the ball and get to work in a hurry.

Can Bacarri Rambo bounce back? Not only did Rambo go from the penthouse (starting the season opener on Monday night) to the outhouse (mainly inactive and an afterthought from after the first few games on) last year, he had a rough day against Tom Brady earlier this week. Rambo went in with the first team after Ryan Clark headed to the sideline and Brady immediately started throwing to whoever Rambo was covering. He just couldn’t stay with anybody. Rambo will get another shot tonight; with Clark ruled out, he is likely to start. We’ll see what he can do.

Second-half running back—Silas Redd told me yesterday that he expects to play a lot in the second half. That will be his time to shine, even though he will be playing against players who are not likely to make the team. There may not be room for Redd on the Redskins’ 53 but perhaps if he performs well another team may become interested.

Jay Gruden’s debut—This won’t be as memorable as September 7 in Houston will be but it will be another milestone for the first-time head coach. We’d like to see some clock management situations at the end of the first half or at the end of the game. Gruden’s goal? “My biggest thing is I want to make sure we keep order on the sideline, we look like we know what we’re doing, and it’s not a big chaotic situation on the sideline,” he said.

If you have any questions about what's going on at training camp, 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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Today’s schedule: Preseason open, Patriots at Redskins, 7:30, FedEx Field

—It’s been 221 days since the Redskins played a game; in 31 days they play the Texans in their 2014 season opener.

Days until: Monday night preseason vs. Browns 11; Final cuts 23; Home opener vs. Jaguars 38

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Good news Redskins fans: Jason Pierre-Paul shipped out of NFC East


Good news Redskins fans: Jason Pierre-Paul shipped out of NFC East

The Giants shipped out Jason Pierre-Paul for life as a Buccaneer, and in turn, Tampa will send a third and fourth round draft pick to New York.

Moving Pierre-Paul comes at a curious time for the Giants. The team will eat $15 million of dead money in the move, and New York also sent a fourth-round pick to Tampa as part of the transaction. 

What it definitely signals is that Big Blue looks to be moving from a 4-3 base defense to a 3-4 look. Additionally, with the second overall pick in the NFL Draft in April, maybe the Giants will seriously look at NC State defensive lineman Bradley Chubb. 


For the Redskins, seeing Pierre-Paul leave the NFC East is welcome news. He has 12.5 career sacks against Washington QBs, the same amount he has against the Eagles and Cowboys combined. 

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Looking at the details of Zach Brown's contract with the Redskins

Looking at the details of Zach Brown's contract with the Redskins

The Redskins and linebacker Zach Brown agreed to a three-year contract that will require Brown to continue to play at a high level if he is going to collect all of the $21 million the deal contains.

Brown’s camp reportedly was shopping for a contract that had some $20 million in guaranteed money. The actual deal fell well short of that.

Brown, who was leading the league in tackles before an assortment of injuries forced him to sit out the last three games, got a total of $5.5 million in fully guaranteed money. He got a $4.5 million signing bonus and his $1 million salary for 2018 is fully guaranteed.


After that, the remaining two seasons essentially are team options. In 2019 he has a $6.75 million salary and $4.5 million of that is guaranteed for injury. His 2020 salary is $7.5 million with no guarantees of any kind.

The contract also has per-game roster bonuses available at a rate of $15,625 for each game he is on the 46-man game day roster in 2018 (total of $250,000 for the year) and $31,250 per game in 2019 and 2020 ($500,000 total).

The salary cap hits per year are as follows:

2018: $2.75 million
2019: $8.75 million
2020: $9.5 million

The average annual value of $7 million ranks ninth among inside linebackers.

Brown will need to continue to play well to collect on the contract. The team will be able to save $5.75 million on the 2019 cap if they terminate the deal after one season and $8 million if they do it in 2020.


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 @TandlerNBCS.