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Three things not being talked about enough from the Redskins' first four games

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Three things not being talked about enough from the Redskins' first four games

After the Redskins' first three games of the 2017 season, a post was published to look at developments and players from each of those contests that were being passed over for other storylines (and those posts are here, here and here, in case you need some proof).

The words below are devoted to performing a similar exercise, but instead of looking just at Week 4's mostly-but-not-totally-fun loss in Kansas City, the entire opening quarter of Washington's year will be the focus.

There's been plenty of chatter about Josh Doctson and Jim Tomsula's magical touch with the defensive line so far. But here are three things not being talked about enough four weeks into the Redskins' journey.

MORE: NFL POWER RANKINGS, UPDATED AFTER WEEK 4

1) Ryan Kerrigan continues to be one of the NFL's steadiest defenders

This angle likely isn't getting enough run because of additions like Zach Brown and DJ Swearinger and the impact they've brought, the incredible growth of Matt Ioannidis and the sheer size of Greg Manusky's biceps, along with all the other things going on on the defensive side of the ball.

But the truth is that Ryan Kerrigan is, like always, producing, and the production is, like always, not being appreciated enough.

Through four weeks, No. 91's posted 2.5 sacks, recorded a pick-6 and forced a fumble. That sack number should be bigger, too (one play against the Chiefs stands out) and you'd be smart to bet that he'll finish with more than the 10 he's on pace for right now.

Kerrigan will never bring attention onto himself. That doesn't mean you can't give it to him on your own, though.

2) The red zone is again looking like the dread zone

This point tends to slip through when the Redskins are playing well, but it doesn't when they're slumping. But don't allow the very positive vibes around the Burgundy and Gold distract you from the fact that they still have the red zone blues.

Last season, the 'Skins were 30th in the league when it came to scoring TDs once they breached the 20-yard line. They are again in that slot through 2017's opening four weeks, and their percentage (36.3 percent) is actually worse than 2016's (45.9).

The assumption was that they'd at least return to an average level of performance in the red zone after being horrible in their 8-7-1 campaign. Unfortunately, up to this point, they've just returned to horrible.

RELATED: WHY JOSH DOCTSON NEEDS MORE SNAPS, AND NOW

3) The otherwordly pain tolerance and fortitude that Trent Williams has 

If Trent Williams had a regular job, the man would never take a sick day or cut out early.

In his squad's opener vs. Philadelphia, Williams was forced to leave due to an ankle injury. He quickly returned. And in his squad's showdown vs. K.C., Williams was forced to leave with a knee injury. He quickly returned.

"It's painful right now," the tackle told NBC Sports Washington's JP Finlay after the Chiefs game. "All that adrenaline is starting to wear off and [I'm] starting to feel exactly how painful it is. But it's worth it, man. I wanted to be there for my team. If I gotta fight through some stuff and have a very trying morning in the next few days, it's worth it."

All NFL players have a high pain tolerance. Offensive linemen, however, carry an even higher threshold. Yet Williams may be in a class of his own. And it's a class where missing more than a few snaps is truly unacceptable, apparently.

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Need to Know: The five highest-paid 2018 Redskins

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Need to Know: The five highest-paid 2018 Redskins

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, February 24, 18 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 five highest-paid Redskins in 2018

Originally published 1/12/18

This is how the five highest-paid Redskins per their 2018 salary cap numbers stack up as of now. The list could change, of course during free agency and if a particular quarterback returns. Cap numbers via Over the Cap.

CB Josh Norman, $17 million—The Redskins do have a window which would allow them to move on from Norman. His $13.5 million salary for this year doesn’t become guaranteed until the fifth day of the league year so it would be “only” a $9 million cap charge to move on from Norman, who turned 30 in December. Don’t look for that to happen but the possibility is there.

OT Trent Williams, $13.86 million—He is one of the best left tackles in the business. Those of you out there who have advocated moving him to left guard should look at this cap number, which is way out of line for what a team can afford to pay a guard. At his pay, he needs to be playing on the edge.

OLB Ryan Kerrigan, $12.45 million—He has delivered double-digit sacks in each of the two seasons that his contract extension has been in effect. That’s good value in a league that values the ability to get to the quarterback.

TE Jordan Reed, $10.14 million—The Redskins knew that he might have a year like last year when he played in only six games when they agreed to Reed’s five-year, $50 million extension. They can live with one such season. If he has another one in 2018 they may rethink things.

G Brandon Scherff, $6.75 million—The fact that a rookie contract is No. 5 on this list is a good sign that, as of now, the Redskins’ cap is not top heavy like it was last year. The top three cap hits from Norman, Williams, and Kirk Cousins totaled $59 million, which was about 35 percent of the cap. This year the total cap numbers of the top three come to $43.3 million, 24.3 percent of the estimated $178 million salary cap.

Next five: OT Morgan Moses ($5.4 million), TE Vernon Davis ($5.33 million), DL Stacy McGee ($4.8 million), DL Terrell McClain ($4.75 million), S D.J. Swearinger ($4.33 million)

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) 5
—NFL Draft (4/26) 61
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 197

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Martavis Bryant could make sense for the Redskins, at the right price

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Martavis Bryant could make sense for the Redskins, at the right price

A 2017 midseason trade for Martavis Bryant made no sense for the Redskins. A 2018 offseason trade for Martavis Bryant, however, might make sense for the Redskins. 

Bryant is on the trade block, per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, and will be an intriguing prospect for receiver-needy teams across the NFL. In parts of three seasons with the Steelers, Bryant has 17 touchdowns and a 15.2 yards-per-reception average. 

A big play threat from any place on the field, Bryant would immediately make the Redskins receiving unit more athletic and explosive. 

It's not all good news with Bryant, though.

He was suspended for the entire 2016 season after repeated drug violations and caused some distraction for Pittsburgh during the 2017 season when he asked for a trade via social media. 

MORE: CAN YOU GUESS THESE REDSKINS BASED ON THEIR COMBINE NUMBERS?

Is the talent enough to overcome the off-field distractions? Many would say it is. 

Last year, in just eight starts, Bryant grabbed 50 catches for more than 600 yards and three TDs. In their lone playoff loss to the Jaguars, Bryant caught two passes for 78 yards and a TD. 

Remember, too, the Steelers have an explosive offense, and Bryant is coupled with Antonio Brown on the receiver front along with Ben Roethlisberger at quarterback and Le'Veon Bell at running back. The Pittsburgh offense is loaded. 

Washington's offense is not nearly the prolific unit that the Steelers send out, but Jay Gruden does design a good offense. 

The real question surrounding any talk of trading for Bryant is the cost.

The Redskins are not in a position to send away any more draft picks this offseason after giving up a third-round pick, in addition to Kendall Fuller, to acquire Alex Smith. Bruce Allen and the Redskins front office need to improve their team in plenty of spots, and the team's draft picks are quite valuable. 

Bryant only has one year remaining on his rookie deal, and it's hard to balance that sort of short-term investment with the value of adding a rookie committed to the team for at least four years. Perhaps a late-round pick would make sense, but it would need to be a sixth-rounder. 

This could be one of those rare situations in the NFL where a player for player swap could work, though pulling that type of maneuver requires a lot of moving parts. 

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayNBCS for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!