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It's been just two weeks, but the Redskins have found their No. 1 wide receiver in rookie Terry McLaurin

It's been just two weeks, but the Redskins have found their No. 1 wide receiver in rookie Terry McLaurin

The Redskins wasted no time during Sunday's contest against the Dallas Cowboys to take a shot. On their first offensive play from scrimmage, quarterback Case Keenum stepped back in the pocket and uncorked a deep spiral several yards down the middle of the field.

The play was similar to one that worked a week ago in Philadelphia. While Keenum's pass fell incomplete, it was a sign of what the Redskins offense has been trying to do so far in 2019: get the ball to No. 17.

It's taken just two games for Redskins wide receiver Terry McLaurin to prove he is a legit NFL wide receiver. In less than six months, he's turned himself from a speedy third-round pick to the Burgundy and Gold's No. 1 option in the passing game. 

McLaurin's production in Sunday's 31-21 loss to Dallas took a dip from his outstanding opener against Philadelphia, where he totaled 121 yards and a touchdown in his debut. Still, he led the Redskins in receiving yards (65) and targets (9) on Sunday, as well as tieing for the team-high in receptions (5), all while facing Dallas' Byron Jones, one of the better cornerbacks in the NFL.

To put it simply, he's quickly become, quarterback Case Keenum's go-to guy.

"He's poised. He doesn't get too out of his element," Redskins running back Adrian Peterson said on the rookie. "He runs great routes as well."

Peterson, like many of us, did not know much about McLaurin entering the season. After all, he had just 35 receptions as a senior at Ohio State a year ago. 

"I didn't really know too much about him. I just thought maybe he was like a speed guy," Peterson said. 

In college, McLaurin earned the reputation of being a great special teams player. But he impressed at wide receiver so much during training camp that head coach Jay Gruden had to pull him off the special teams unit and keep him strictly as a wideout, according to the FOX broadcast. That's how valuable the Redskins think he is.

Through two games, McLaurin has a total of 10 receptions, 189 yards, and a touchdown in each contest. He would've gone over 200 receiving yards in his stellar NFL debut if Keenum didn't slightly overthrow him on a deep post. 

Since 1996, only four wide receivers have totalled more receiving yards in their first two NFL games than McLaurin. The four? Anquan Boldin, Marquise Brown, Stefon Diggs, and Will Fuller. To put into perspective, both Randy Moss (184) and DeAndre Hopkins (183) had fewer receiving yards in his first two games than McLaurin has (189).

It didn't take long for McLaurin to prove he is a lot more than just a speed guy. He can run every route and has impressed many of his teammates.

"He showed that he can be crisp when it comes to running routes," Peterson said. "It's very impressive to have that, the short game and be a threat as well."

There's still plenty of uncharted potential with McLaurin as well. 

"We're still learning what Terry can do," Keenum said.

Through two weeks of the Redskins 2019 season, there has not been a lot to cheer about. Opening up the season with two losses, each to a division rival, was just about the worst-case scenario for the Burgundy and Gold. 

But if McLaurin's first two NFL games are a sign of what's to come, the Redskins will have struck gold with their third-round pick.

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Redskins cut edge rusher Noah Spence, promote Carroll Phillips from practice squad

Redskins cut edge rusher Noah Spence, promote Carroll Phillips from practice squad

The Redskins cut former Buccaneers second-round pick Noah Spence Tuesday and promoted Carroll Phillips from the practice squad, according to Ian Rapoport

Washington signed Spence in mid-September after the Bucs cut him at the end of training camp.

Hopes were high for Spence in Tampa after he recorded 5.5 sacks in his rookie season, but has only recorded two sacks in the three seasons following 2016. 

Phillips joined the Redskins practice squad in Week 9 after playing in limited snaps with the Jaguars and Colts as an undrafted free agent in 2017. 

The Illinois product figures to be the fourth man in the Redskins pass rush rotation behind Ryan Kerrigan, Montez Sweat and Ryan Anderson. 

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2020 NFL Mock Draft 5.0: Will the Redskins go best player available at No. 2?

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2020 NFL Mock Draft 5.0: Will the Redskins go best player available at No. 2?

After Week 11 of the 2019 NFL season, only the Cincinnati Bengals have a higher likelihood of landing the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft than the Washington Redskins. 

Washington is 1-9, and it's hard to identify which, if any, games remaining on their schedule are winnable. In all likelihood, even if the Burgundy and Gold tally another win or two on the season, Washington will be selecting a player in the top five of the 2020 NFL Draft.

So how do the Redskins turn it around? It starts with the draft

In our latest Mock Draft 5.0, the Redskins have the No. 2 overall pick. With the team needing help in a variety of areas, what do they do with the pick?

<<CHECK OUT OUR 2020 NFL MOCK DRAFT 5.0 HERE>>

Here are a few options.

Chase Young, Ohio State, EDGE: In a draft full of offensive talent, Young has been widely considered the best player available. The OSU product would make an immediate impact on a team that has struggled to get to the quarterback in 2019. Our mock draft has Washington taking Young.

Jerry Jeudy, Alabama, WR: Jeudy is arguably the best wide receiver prospect since Odell Beckham Jr. in 2014. He's lethal with the ball in his hands and is the best route runner in college football. Outside of Terry McLaurin, Washington's wide receiving corps have little promise. Selecting Jeudy would give young QB Dwayne Haskins a go-to target.

Jeffrey Okudah, Ohio State, CB: Quinton Dunbar has had a solid season for the Burgundy and Gold, but both Josh Norman and Fabian Moreau have been liabilities in the secondary. With Norman's contract, Washington will likely release him in the offseason. Okudah is the best cornerback in the draft and has elite man-to-man and ball skills.

Andrew Thomas, Georgia, LT: Donald Penn has proven to be a serviceable fill in, but at 36 years old, he has little future in Washington. Trent Williams has vowed to never be a Redskin again, meaning this position becomes a necessity for the Redskins. Thomas is the best offensive lineman in the class and would be a Day 1 starter for Washington.

Trade Back: The No. 2 overall pick could be used as a trade asset for the Burgundy and Gold before or on draft day. With quarterbacks Joe Burrow, Justin Herbert, and potentially Tua Tagovailoa slated to go in the top five of the draft, any QB-needy team could offer the Redskins a package they cannot refuse for the No. 2 pick. The Redskins have holes across the board, and the best way to address them could be stockpiling draft picks, similarly to how the Raiders did in 2019.

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