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Need to Know: What's the best case win total for the 2015 Redskins?

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Need to Know: What's the best case win total for the 2015 Redskins?

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, April 26, four days before the Washington Redskins go on the clock at the NFL draft.

Question of the day

A few days a week I’ll give an in-depth answer to a question submitted by a fan on my Twitter feed, via the Real Redskins Facebook page, or in the comments section here. On Twitter address the questions to me at @Rich_TandlerCSN with the #NTK hashtag. There will be a comment thread set up on the Facebook page and if you’re asking your question here, put “for NTK” at the start of the comment.

Here are some quick-hit replies to some very good questions that don’t quite warrant a full post to answer:

I assume you’re talking about trading down in the first round, down from their No. 5 spot. Right now my gut feeling is that there is about a 65 percent chance that they stay put and 35 percent chance that they will make a deal. If they do trade, there are the obvious trade partners we’ve been hearing about, the Browns and Saints. But the obvious isn’t always what happens in the NFL draft. Maybe the Dolphins, picking 14th, will want to make a move up for a receiver or the Falcons might be willing to pay a premium to jump up from No. 8 to grab the edge rusher of their choice.

The Alabama wide receiver could be the safest, most NFL-ready pick in the entire draft, and that is rarely said about a receiver. His availability at pick No. 5 is very much in doubt. It would not be shocking to see the Raiders take him with the fourth pick to get a reliable target for Derek Carr. But if he is there and both Leonard Williams and Dante Fowler Jr., the top two defensive prospects, are off the board I think the Redskins will strongly consider Cooper.

The chances seem good that White, the other top wide receiver in the draft, will be available at No. 5, particularly if Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota go 1-2. If that happens I think that Scot McCloughan will work the phones like a madman for 15 minutes trying to unload the pick. If they can’t deal the pick, I don’t think they will take White. I might think differently but Scott McCloughan seems likely to take Fowler or Vic Beasley over the promising but unpolished White.

I posted my way-too-early season prediction yesterday on CSN. Spoiler alert—I said that they will be 6-10. I figured they would go 3-4 during their relative easy stretch before the bye (as easy as games can be for a team that has won seven games in the last two years can be, anyway). It’s certainly possible for them to steal another win during that segment of the schedule and go into the break at 4-3. It’s more of a stretch to see them getting four wins after the bye but in the best case, which is what the question was about, they could beat the Saints, Giants, and Bills at home and Carolina on the road. That would add up to 8-8, best-case scenario. If the Redskins suffer from injuries and the quarterback carousel continues you can’t another 4-12 campaign, perhaps even worse.

Timeline

—It’s been 119 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be 140 days until they play another one.

Days until: 2015 NFL Draft 4; Redskins minicamp starts 51; Redskins training camp starts 95

If you have any questions about what's going on at Redskins Park, hit me up in the comments. And I'm always on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Everybody thinks the intentional grounding call against Kirk Cousins was wrong, except Troy Aikman

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Everybody thinks the intentional grounding call against Kirk Cousins was wrong, except Troy Aikman

The referees made a fairly obvious mistake last week in the Redskins loss to the Saints when they flagged Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins for intentional grounding late in the game. 

Let's be honest: the call was terrible.

Cousins never felt a pass rush on the play, and was very obviously throwing the ball away. Jay Gruden talked about the play on Monday, and could not figure out how a flag came out in that situation. 

We had two receivers in the area. Quarterbacks throws it away all the time that are uncatchable balls whether they are in the pocket or not. As long as there is a receiver in the area, you can throw it whether they are looking or not. Guys run bad routes – one guy runs a hitch and he’s supposed to run a go and the quarterback throws the go ball, it’s not grounding. So I don’t know why the confusion.

The NFL even reached out and apologized to Redskins team president Bruce Allen for the blown call, a hollow gesture that did not generate much excitement from Cousins (via 106.7 the Fan). 

Whatever they do to say, ‘we’re sorry, wrong call,’ it’s tough because there’s nobody bringing that up in February or March when we're making decisions about which direction to go with the organization. We appreciate the clarification but you know it really doesn’t do much.

If you're keeping score, the NFL, the Redskins head coach and the Redskins quarterback all know the call was wrong. 

You know who doesn't think the call was wrong? Fox analyst, and former Cowboys Hall of Fame QB, Troy Aikman.

Grounding? Free rusher? Decide for yourself below.

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Fantasy Football -- Thanksgiving Day plan

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Fantasy Football -- Thanksgiving Day plan

The Week 12 fantasy football rankings are out -- but when it comes to Thanksgiving Day, everyone wants some player regardless of where they slot overall. Don't overthink it and take a lesser player, but for those on the fence or simply looking for Thursday action, here are some recommendations for all three games.

Vikings @ Lions

Obvious: Vikings -- Wide receivers Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs... running backs Latavius Murray and Jerick McKinnon are in the RB2/Flex discussion for most, but good luck picking between them; Lions -- Wide receiver Golden Tate and ... wide receiver Marvin Jones works in three-WR formats while quarterback Matthew Stafford is No. 14 among passers this week.

Start: Case Keenum averaged 19.3 points over the last four games while the Lions have allowed ample points to fantasy quarterbacks in that stretch, though only three touchdown passes. Having Thielen and Diggs up the potential for Keenum, who is QB17 in the Week 12 rankings. That's comparable with Matthew Stafford (QB14), Andy Dalton, Jacoby Brissett and ahead of Derek Carr.

Add: Not sure there's any fringe skill player worth taking a flyer on so take a look at Vikings kicker Kai Forbath. He's attempted at least three field goals in four of his last five games and he kicked five extra points in the lone exception. ... Some will start Ameer Abdullah based on their options, but just know the Vikings allow the second fewest points to fantasy tight ends this season.

Chargers @ Cowboys

Obvious: Chargers -- running back Melvin Gordon and wide receiver Keenan Allen; Cowboys -- Wide receiver Dez Bryant, running back Alfred Morris and... quarterback Dak Prescott, though his production is down without running back Ezekiel Elliott and left tackle Tyron Smith.

Start: This hasn't been a vintage Philip Rivers season, but he's coming off his best performance (251 yards, two touchdown passes) since Week 5. The Cowboys aren't that special in the secondary and have surrendered two touchdown passes in three consecutive games. At QB13, he's on the cusp of QB1 status in 12-team leagues. 

Add: Kickers Nick Novak (Chargers) and Mike Nugent (Cowboys) are 15th and 16th respectively. So, there's that. 

Giants @ Redskins

The obvious: Giants -- tight end Evan Engram and... running back Orleans Darkwa is a viable RB2 option against a Redskins defense giving up gobs of yards on the ground; Redskins -- quarterback Kirk Cousins, tight Vernon Davis and...running back Samaje Perine is RB12 this week, though listed as questionable on the injury report with a finger issue.

Start: Jordan Reed is out for a fourth consecutive game, meaning Vernon Davis once again is Washington's main tight end. While he hasn't provided wow performances like Reed at his Pro Bowl best, Davis has been good for a solid 8-11 since taking on a larger role starting in Week 3. This could be his best statistical week of the season. The Giants allow the most points to fantasy tight ends on the season. Opposing tight ends scored a touchdown in each of the first 10 games before the streak snapped Sunday.

RELATED: NEW AND IMPROVED WEEK 12 FANTASY RANKINGS

Add: Josh Doctson is only owned in 55 percent of leagues on CBS even though he's moved into the role of Washington's top outside receiver. The second-year player had four receptions for 81 yards in Sunday's overtime loss, though all the production came in the first half. Consistency is the next step, but Kirk Cousins is showing more and more confidence in the 6'3" target especially on 50-50 balls. Doctson is WR36 in my Week 12 rankings, meaning he's worth starting consideration in three-WR formats regardless.