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Redskins training camp practice report, Day 2

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Redskins training camp practice report, Day 2

RICHMOND—The Redskins took the field for Day 2 of training camp with sunny skies and a light breeze. Temperatures hung around 90 but the humidity wasn’t as bad as it had been for the past few days so conditions were not bad.

—WR Tony Jones, who is one of the longest of long shots to make the team, made a nice move to get away from high-dollar free agent CB Chris Culliver. Lined up wide left, Jones went down about five yards, made a shoulder fake to the outside, and cut to the inside. Robert Griffin III fired a nice pass to him on the move.

—Back practicing fielding kickoffs were Niles Paul, Trey Williams, Jamison Crowder, Reggie Bell, Andre Roberts, Chris Thompson, and Rashad Ross. I think that Roberts is the favorite to hold on the to job he had last year but he will be pushed.

— DeSean Jackson fielded some punts. I have to wonder if the Redskins are playing it too safe with him. He could be a major asset returning punts. I get the injury risk but is it really significantly worse than it is on plays from scrimmage?

—Jackson also runs pass routes well. Twice he blew pass the defense and caught a long pass from Griffin. Maybe they should keep him in bubble wrap when he’s not running pass patterns.

— Junior Galette did his first on-field work since signing his contract. He did some running and cutting on a side field with one of the assistant coaches.

Silas Redd had a nice run going until SS Duke Ihenacho came up behind him and punched the ball out, just like the coaches have been teaching the defense to do. But Redd, who had some problems holding on to the ball in very limited action last year, needs to work on ball security.

Bashaud Breeland’s day went from bad to worse. He appeared to sustain a knee injury while breaking up a pass. He was down on the turf for several minutes. (Update: The injury may not be as bad as it appeared, see our story here.)

Alfred Morris is looking comfortable running the Redskins power scheme. He glides to the hole. As with everything here, no-pads reality reminder is in effect.

—Yesterday is was Brandon Scherff, today it was Takoby Cofield running a lap around the field after committing a false start.

Chris Thompson had a nice run and later picked up some yardage on a short pass reception. He’s quick and fluid, a natural runner. If he can stay on the field he has a shot to be a very effective third down back.

—Griffin had his play of the day on a short pass to Jamison Crowder. He dropped back and had to slide right to avoid pressure from Terrance Knighton. He stopped and fired to Crowder over the middle. The pass hit the receiver on the move between the 8 and the 0.

Kirk Cousins made up for a rough Thursday with a very good Friday. His best play came late in practice, a deep pass that his Crowder in stride.

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The Cardinals could be the cure to the Redskins' pass rushing issues

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USA TODAY Sports

The Cardinals could be the cure to the Redskins' pass rushing issues

The Redskins have not had a very good year when it comes to sacking the opposing quarterback. They have 31 sacks for the season, 17th in the NFL.

They had a then-NFL best 32-game streak with at least one sack came to an end in Week 10 against the Vikings.

Ryan Kerrigan is doing well with 9.0 sacks to his credit. Preston Smith has five but only a half since Week 6. Matt Ioannidis and Jonathan Allen were forming a solid interior pass rush tandem early in the year but Allen went on injured reserve with a Lisfranc injury and Ioannidis suffered a broken hand that limited his playing time and effectiveness.

MORE REDSKINS: IS GALETTE ON HIS WAY OUT?

But the cure to the Redskins’ pass-rushing ills just may be coming to town on Sunday in the form of the Arizona Cardinals and quarterback Blaine Gabbert.

The Cardinals have given up 44 sacks on the season; that’s 31st in the NFL.

Things have gotten worse in the last couple of weeks, with Gabbert going down a combined 15 times against the Rams and Titans.

If you think that the Cardinals may have hit rock bottom, consider that two starters, left tackle Jared Veldheer and right guard Earl Watford, won’t be playing due to injuries.

Will Holden, a rookie fifth-round pick, will start at left tackle and Evan Boehm, who lost his job to Watford earlier this season, will be the right guard.

Of course, the Redskins have to go out and make it happen. The entire Cowboys offense was slumping until they met the Redskins a couple of weeks ago. They can’t be a haven for a struggling unit once again.

In any case, it is an opportunity that is in front of the Redskins. It’s up to them to take advantage of it.

RELATED: REED LIKELY TO STAY IN 2018

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.

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Need to Know: State of the Redskins, Week 15—Looking for motivation

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Need to Know: State of the Redskins, Week 15—Looking for motivation

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, December 14, three days before the Washington Redskins play the Cardinals at FedEx Field.

Timeline

Today’s schedule: Practice 1 p.m.; Jay Gruden and Greg Manusky news conferences and open locker room after practice, approx. 3 p.m.

Days until:

—Broncos @ Redskins Christmas Eve (12/24) 10
—Redskins @ Giants (12/17) 17
—NFL Draft (4/26/18) 133

State of the Redskins

Top storylines

Jobs on the line? It’s been the conventional wisdom that the jobs of Jay Gruden and his staff are safe, barring a complete collapse at the end of the year. Well, after two ugly losses we are 40 percent of the way to a complete collapse. The Redskins don’t even have to look good down the stretch, they just need to win two of the final three and be competitive in the other. Gruden might be able to survive a couple more games like the Cowboys and Chargers debacles but if that happens I wouldn’t want to be him on January 1, the day after the season ends.

Shutdowns started—Jordan Reed going on injured reserve could be the first of a few moves to end the seasons of players who won’t be healthy in time to play in more than one or two games. It lets the player dive into rehab and it lets the team sign and get a look at a player who can stay on the roster through the offseason and compete for a roster spot in 2018. There could be more coming up until Week 17.

Playing out the string—Last week, when the Redskins were technically alive for the playoffs they apparently couldn’t muster enough motivation to prepare properly. It will be interesting to see how they react this week with their playoff odds reduced to zero.

Last three games

Sunday vs. Cardinals (6-7)—The Cardinals have fallen even further than the Redskins. Two years ago, they were on their way to a first-round bye and an appearance in the NFC title game. This season they are 6-7 after suffering from a raft of injuries, including losing their starting QB and All-Pro running back David Johnson. Can two teams with nothing to play for put on an entertaining show?

Christmas Eve vs. Broncos (4-9)—And in comes another team that has fallen even further and harder. The Broncos were lifting the Super Bowl Trophy two years ago. Now, the defense that spearheaded that run is still solid but without a reliable quarterback, they are having issues. At this point, your guess at if it will be Paxton Lynch, Trevor Siemian, or Brock Osweiler starting at quarterback is as good as mine.

New Year’s Eve @ Giants (2-11)—Will this game be bye-bye to Eli? Changes are coming to New York and Manning, sometimes a Redskins nemesis and sometimes a player who gift-wrapped wins for Washington, could be on the way out. The Redskins could be playing to avoid the kind of upheaval that has already begun in the Big Apple.

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.

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