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2018 NFL Draft: New Year's Day prospects


2018 NFL Draft: New Year's Day prospects

For many New Year’s Day means three things: Hangovers, resolutions and college football. We’ll focus on the latter and specifically the 2018 NFL Draft prospects playing in five games. More overtly, here are the names of prospects that could make sense for the Washington Redskins.

Let’s start with the three non-playoff games: Outback Bowl (Michigan-South Carolina), Peach Bowl (Central Florida-Auburn) and Citrus Bowl (Notre Dame-LSU)

Maurice Hurst, defensive tackle, Michigan

Measurables: 6-foot-2, 282 pounds

Projection: First round

Need: The Redskins may have struck gold with last season’s first rounder Jonathan Allen, but the current defensive line options are more about rotation pieces than playmakers.

Analysis (USA Today): “An explosive force at the point of attack, Hurst uses his quickness and well-rounded skill set to make frequent trips into opposing backfields. Hurst has the versatility to line up in multiple spots along the defensive line, and will be valuable at the next level, regardless of scheme.”

Quenton Nelson, guard, Notre Dame

Measurables: 6-foot-5, 329 pounds

Projection: First round

Need: Starting left guard Shawn Lauvao is heading into free agency after another injury-plagued season. Washington likely looks for a new option. That could be keeping free agent Spencer Long and moving him from center back to guard.

Analysis (Albert Breer, “Notre Dame’s Quenton Nelson is probably the most agreed upon prospect that I’ve discussed with scouts. When I told an exec last week that I’d probably write that Nelson was “maybe a better guard prospect than ex-teammate Zack Martin,” he told me to take the “maybe” out of there. In 2014, Martin, you may remember, became the first rookie linemen to make first-team All-Pro in 57 years. I had Nelson going fifth in my mock.”

Derrius Guice, running back, LSU

Measurables: 5-foot-11, 212 pounds

Projection: First round

Need: Injuries certainly hampered the ground game, but Washington’s running attack didn’t wow anyone outside of a handful of games in 2017 and remains a question mark entering 2018.

Analysis: Guice battled a nagging leg injury late in the season, but he will play in the Bowl game. Arguably the No. 2 running back in the 2018 class behind Penn State’s Saquon Barkley, Guice rushed for over 2,500 yards combined the past two seasons with 26 touchdowns. Caught 15 passes in 2017 after 14 total during his previous two seasons.

Carlton Davis, cornerback, Auburn

Measurables: 6-foot-1, 195 pounds

Projection: 1-2 round

Need: Starter Bashaud Breeland is headed to free agency and the bidding war could knock the Redskins out of the mix assuming they are interested in keeping him.

Analysis (” (Davis) is a good corner with size, speed and length. The junior can battle big wideouts as he is a physical defender who really competes. Davis can have issues with coverage downfield and deep speed like many big corners. Some sources believe he could end up being a first-round pick, but others aren't as high on Davis.”

Others: Auburn edge rusher Jeff Holland, Auburn running back Kerryon Johnson, Central Florida cornerback Mike Hughes, Notre Dame left tackle Mike McGlinchey

Next: Prospects playing in the college football playoffs

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Redskins starters training camp one-liners, offense

Associated Press

Redskins starters training camp one-liners, offense

During training camp, it’s natural for the media coverage to gravitate towards the long shots and underdogs and the backups fighting to hang on to a roster spot. The starters go out and do their thing and those players doing their thing isn’t news. 

With that in mind, here is a one-liner review of how each anticipated starter fared in training camp. We’ll start with the offense today, look for the defense tomorrow. 

QB Alex Smith—He still needs some work on timing with his receivers but overall, he looks like a quarterback you can win with. 

RB Rob Kelley—After his move up to starter in the wake of the Derrius Guice injury, Kelley continues to work as he has from the start of camp, like a guy fighting for a roster spot.

WR Paul Richardson—The $40 million free agent pickup showed that his game has some versatility as he made some tough catches over the middle along with some deep receptions. 

WR Josh Doctson—His heel injury slowed down what was solid progress early in training camp.

WR Jamison Crowder—His solid, workmanlike camp should make Redskins fans hope that the team is working on a long-term contract extension with Crowder right now. 

TE Jordan Reed—Considering his importance to the offense, his progress after having surgery on both of his big toes is the most positive story from camp

LT Trent Williams—The plan to ramp up his activity as he continues to recover from offseason knee surgery is right on track and there’s every reason to believe he’ll be a full strength in Week 1. 

LG Shaun Lauvao—When he’s healthy, Lauvao is a good enough guard to win with and so far, he has been healthy. 

C Chase Roullier—His strength is often on display during one-on-one blocking drills and he has the appearance of a center the Redskins will be able to plug in and play for at least the next several years. 

RG Brandon Scherff—The fourth-year player is working his way towards his third straight Pro Bowl appearance.

RT Morgan Moses—He is still working through some ankle pain but he should be good to go Week 1. 

Redskins 2018 news

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

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Need to Know: Redskins have faith in their young cornerbacks but will keep their options open

Need to Know: Redskins have faith in their young cornerbacks but will keep their options open

RICHMOND—Here is what you need to know on Wednesday, August 15, one day before the Washington Redskins host the Jets in their second preseason game. 

Talking points

The Redskins paid Orlando Scandrick $1 million and he didn’t play so much as a preseason snap for them. The money is gone, and the Redskins are left with what is mostly a youthful group at cornerback

The senior citizen is Josh Norman, who is 30 and entering his seventh NFL season. Quinton Dunbar is next on the age scale at 26. Those two will be the starters at cornerback on the outside. After them, youth rules the day. 

Fabian Moreau, 22, will take the slot corner position that Scandrick was going to fill. He is in his second NFL season having played just 59 snaps as a rookie. 

That’s 59 more NFL snaps than the next three players on the depth chart have combined. Rookies Greg Stroman, a seventh-round pick this year, Adonis Alexander, a supplemental sixth-round pick, and undrafted free agent Danny Johnson, all 22 years old, are the next men up if any of the top three on the depth chart falter or get injured. 

“I’m very impressed with them all,” said Jay Gruden. “You know, obviously Adonis not as much because he just got here, and he’s been hurt but he’s got the skill set that we’ve noticed, as far as your sixth corner, I think he’d be a very good guy to have in your building to develop. Watching Stroman and watching Danny Johnson compete and play, I’ve been impressed. Watching Fabian move inside, I’ve been very impressed.”

That all sounds good. However, Gruden made sure that everyone knows that the cornerback depth chart is not set in stone.

“We still have time if it doesn’t work out or if somebody gets injured, we still have time to make moves also ourselves,” he said.

The Redskins have about nine practices and three preseason games before they have to set their roster. If it proves that their confidence in the young corners is not well founded, they could look to pick up an alternative on the waiver wire, in the free agent market (Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie is still available), or via a trade.

The best-case is that the kids work out. But if not, there are alternatives. 

Bureau of statistics

The 2017 Redskins were sixth in the league in pass defense according to Football Outsiders’ DVOA metric. 

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The agenda

Today: No media availability

Upcoming: Preseason Jets @ Redskins (Aug. 16) 1 day; Final cut (Sept. 1) 17 days; Season opener @ Cardinals (Sept. 9) 25 days

In case you missed it

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