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Redskins over/under: Wins and losses

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Redskins over/under: Wins and losses

In the coming days, Redskins reporters Tarik El-Bashir and Rich Tandler are going to have some fun with numbers—Las Vegas style. Each morning, we’ll pick a player or unit that’s expected to make a major impact for the Redskins in 2015, set an over/under and then make our predictions. We encourage you to play along in the comments section below.

What stats will the Redskins accomplish as a team?

350 points scored—After ranking 4th in the NFL in 2012 with 436 points scored, the Redskins’ point production declined to 334 (23rd) in 2013 and 301 (26th) last year.

Tandler—Over: The most important factor here may not be on offense. They will be able to score about an extra field goal per game on average if the defense and special teams can provide some improved field position. Oh, and improved quarterback play would help as well.

El-Bashir—Over: Field position and quarterback play are paramount to scoring more points. But so is avoiding drive-killing flags. The Redskins took 57 penalties on offense last season, which was the fifth most in the league. They simply aren’t good enough to give yards away. Discipline was a major emphasis this offseason, and I think it’s going to improve.

450 rushing attempts—The Redskins want to run more than they did last year when they had 401 attempts (21st in NFL). The top rushing teams had around 500 attempts.

Tandler—Over: Again, the defense is part of the puzzle here; if they constantly find themselves behind by 14 in the third quarter they aren’t going to be able to run much. But it also will take a change of Jay Gruden’s mindset. I think he intended to run more last year but didn’t follow through when it came time to relay the play to the quarterback. Having Bill Callahan in his headset every week will help.

El-Bashir—Over: GM Scot McCloughan didn’t throw all that money at run game guru Bill Callahan for nothing. I expect the Redskins to run the ball—a lot—with a combination of Alfred Morris, Matt Jones and Robert Griffin III pushing the team’s attempts into the 450-460 range. Last year, that would have put them 10th in the NFL.

390 points allowed—They did improve last year, giving up 438 points after getting lit up for 478, almost 30 per game, in 2013.

Tandler—Under: The under here is good for the Redskins, so nobody is confused. Even though it will take some time for the new players on defense to gel, 390 is a pretty modest goal.

El-Bashir—Under: Even with an infusion of new talent, I don’t expect the defense to make an enormous leap in Joe Barry’s first year. But I do expect the unit to be better. Getting into the top-20 last year required keeping opponents under 375. That’s doable.

6.5 wins—This is the line most often seen for the Redskins when perusing Vegas and offshore betting sites so we’ll use it here for entertainment purposes only.

Tandler—Under: I have them at six wins right on the nose. As I noted a couple of weeks ago, they have a major hole to climb out of after being outscored by 137 points last year. They could play a lot better and still show only incremental improvement in their record.

El-Bashir—Over: Improvements on defense and along the offensive line + second year under Jay Gruden + the NFC South = 7 wins. I’ve been saying that for months. No reason to revise it—yet. But I reserve the right to make an adjustment after the Redskins host the Dolphins and Rams to open the season.

Previous Redskins over/under posts:

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Need to Know: The most underrated Redskins events of 2017

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Need to Know: The most underrated Redskins events of 2017

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, February 22, 20 days before NFL free agency starts.

I’m out this week so I’ll be re-posting some of the best and most popular articles of the past few months. Some may have slightly dated information but the major points in the posts still stand. Thanks for reading, as always.

The underrated Redskin moments of 2017

Originally published 12/29/17

Sometimes in the NFL, something happens that grabs headlines and appears to be a momentous event that has ripple effects that will last all season and perhaps beyond. Other times something that is greeted with a yawn by fans and the media turns out to be something with lasting impact. Here, in no particular order, are three underrated events from 2017. Tomorrow we’ll look at three events that were overrated at the time they happened.  

Beating the Rams in Week 2—Nobody got particularly excited when the Redskins went to the LA Memorial Coliseum and beat a Rams team that had gone 4-12 in 2016. Sure, there was a belief that they were in good hands with Sean McVay but nobody saw them as anything better than a middle of the pack team. The win looks much more impressive now as the 11-4 Rams have locked up their division with a playoff game in their future.

Drafting safety Montae Nicholson—He was a fourth-round pick who had a shoulder injury and appeared to be a reach. But once he got on the field, the reasons the Redskins drafted him became apparent. His range and hard hitting had an immediate impact on the game. Nicholson had problems staying on the field and he will finish the year on IR, so his impact this year was diminished. Regardless, he has a good chance of being part of the solution to a position with which the Redskins have had issues for years.

Ty Nsekhe’s injury—Against the Raiders in Week 3, Shawn Lauvao’s facemask had an issue and he had to leave the game for a play. In came Nsekhe without an opportunity to warm up. He suffered a core muscle injury and had to undergo surgery. His absence didn’t seem like a big deal at the time, but Trent Williams suffered a knee injury the next week and other offensive linemen were sidelined with injuries over the next several weeks. Nsekhe was inactive until the Week 10 game against the Vikings and he didn’t start a game until the Thanksgiving game against the Giants. He sure would have been useful to have in the lineup instead of T.J. Clemmings or Tyler Catalina.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

Timeline  

Days until:

—NFL Combine (3/1) 7
—NFL Draft (4/26) 63
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 199

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Miami tagged Jarvis Landry, but what does that mean for the Redskins?

Miami tagged Jarvis Landry, but what does that mean for the Redskins?

Everything in the NFL feels like a powder keg, but the reality of Tuesday's opening of the franchise and transition tag period will play out as much more of a slow burn.

Few teams ever actually make moves on the opening day of the tag period, though the Dolphins bucked that conventional wisdom and used the non-exclusive franchise designation on wide receiver Jarvis Landry. 

Astute Redskins fans know the tag system all too well. Landry can now sign a one-year, fully guaranteed contract with the Dolphins worth more than $16 million, the average of the top-five paid receivers in the NFL.

They can also trade Landry and the compensation discussion with a non-exclusive tag begins at two first-round draft picks, though it can eventually be settled for much less. 

RELATED: BEST AND WORST OF REDSKINS' FIRST-ROUND DRAFT HISTORY

What, if anything, does Miami's move mean for the Redskins? Let's take a look:

  1. Not gonna work here - Landry never really seemed like a great fit for the Redskins as a free agent, and that was before the franchise tag. He's a really good slot WR, but Washington already has that in Jamison Crowder. Whether or not Landry actually gets a deal done with the Dolphins or gets traded, it seems highly unlikely the Redskins are his next team. 
  2. "Spirit of the tag" - Miami putting the tag on Landry so early in the process signals that the team might be trying to trade him instead of actually trying to sign him. If that's the case, and plenty of people are suggesting just that, it would seem to be in contrast with the "spirit of the tag." The idea is that a franchise or transition tag is supposed to be used as a tool by an NFL franchise to get a long-term deal done with one of their own players facing free agency. Using the tag as a mechanism to pull of a trade seems very different. Why does any of this matter for Redskins fans? As reports emerged that Washington might look to use a tag on Kirk Cousins and work to trade him, the Cousins camp has made clear they would file a grievance against that technique. Why? Because it would violate the spirit of the tag. Well, it sure looks like Miami is doing the same thing, and as of now, nobody has complained. The situations aren't identical; few resemble the Redskins long, slow, awkward dance with Cousins. But it's certainly worth monitoring. 
  3. Wide Receiver$ - The Redskins could use a veteran wideout to help their young group of Crowder and Josh Doctson. Well, with Landry getting tagged, the price tag just went up. The player that seems to make the most sense in Washington would be Jaguars wideout Allen Robinson. Coming off a knee injury in 2017, some thought Robinson could be signed on a somewhat team-friendly deal. If Landry can get franchised after a season where he didn't even get to 1,000 yards receiving, any thought of a team-friendly deal for Robinson is dead. Make no mistake, Landry and Robinson are good players, but the ever-increasing NFL salary cap will make both young receivers very well paid. 

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