Here is what you need to know on this Monday, September 5, seven days before the Washington Redskins open their season against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
—Today's schedule: Practice 10:50; Jay Gruden news conference after practice approx. 12:00
—The Redskins last played a game that counted 239 days ago. It will be seven days until they host the Steelers in their 2016 season opener.
—Days until: Cowboys @ Redskins 13; Browns @ Redskins 27; Redskins @ Ravens 34
The best and worst units on the Redskins
Now that the 53-man roster is set, what are the best units on the Redskins? And which ones didn’t get enough needed improvement during the offseason? Let’s take a look.
Receivers—Now that it appears that Josh Doctson is well on his way to being able to contribute this year we can crank up the talk about this being the best receiving corps in the NFL again. They were still up there near the top with DeSean Jackson, Jordan Reed, and others. But if Doctson lives up to even part of his potential this year Kirk Cousins will be like the proverbial kid in the candy store.
Cornerbacks—Last year this unit was a mess, with Chris Culliver and DeAngelo Hall suffering injuries and players like Will Blackmon being forced to learn the defense on the fly. It’s amazing that the injection of a $15 million per year, All-Pro performer will do for how a unit is perceived. Josh Norman and the rest are starting the year healthy and with Breeland improving every year, Dashaun Phillips and Greg Toler emerging as strong contributors this group has gone from awful to pretty good.
Defensive line—My working theory is that there aren’t enough defensive linemen in the draft pool who fit Scot McCloughan’s criteria (loves football, strong work ethic, etc.) to stock the Redskins’ line. Why else would he have made 17 draft picks in two seasons and picked only one D-lineman, a player who couldn’t make the 53. It’s a good thing Chris Baker had a breakout season. Otherwise this group would be a total disaster. I mean, if Ziggy Hood is your savior . . .
Running backs—Yeah, I know this one is a little too obvious. Right now the unit consists of an injury prone starter, a third-down back who is wary of being anything more than that, and an undrafted rookie without a single NFL carry. I won’t rule out Matt Jones having a good year but there is much more of a logical case for skepticism.
Tandler on Twitter
The #Redskins may have claimed players on waivers. But if they did they were also claimed by teams ahead of them in priority.— Rich Tandler (@TandlerNBCS) September 4, 2016
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