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Need to Know: A random walk through the Redskins past for edition No. 2000

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Need to Know: A random walk through the Redskins past for edition No. 2000

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, January 21, 52 days before NFL free agency starts.

Timeline  

Days until:

—NFL franchise tag deadline (3/6) 44
—NFL Draft (4/26) 95
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 231

Need to Know No. 2000

This is a special edition of Need to Know. It was 2,000 days ago, on July 31, 2012, that this post designed to give Redskins fans the news and views they need to get their days started was posted for the first time. And it has gone up every single morning since that day, 2,000 mornings in a row.

There is no reliable way to measure how many have read the post since site redesigns and name changes have made reliable tracking difficult. But NTK page views are estimated in the tens of millions. Thanks to all of you for reading and commenting, both on the site and on social media. It’s the passion of Redskins fans that makes the job so enjoyable.

Here is a look back at some of the “landmark” editions of Need to Know. I can’t like to all of them because of the aforementioned changes but it’s an interesting, random walk through Redskins history.

No. 1, “Hits to the depth chart”, 7/31/12—The Redskins were trying to deal with the losses of LB Jonathan Goff, who had suffered a season-ending knee injury, and G Kory Lichtensteiger, who was out after getting his knee scoped. Also, the Saints, who were the Redskins’ opponent in the opener, were complaining about the Bountygate penalties. A lot. See, even during training camp in 2012, NTK was able to look beyond RG3 hysteria to get you to the other important stories of the day.

No. 500, “Nickel coverage—Jordan Reed misses practice”, 12/13/13—Yes, the more things change the more things stay the same. The talented tight end, then a rookie, was still trying to a recover from a concussion he suffered a few weeks earlier. Reed ended up going on injured reserve, missing the last six games. Also, Mike Shanahan said that didn’t pay any attention to all of the negative talk about the team in the media and Kyle Shanahan said that didn’t have any input into the decision to bench RG3 and play Kirk Cousins. Both claims were greeted with skepticism.

No. 1,000, “Can the Redskins draft an immediate O-line starter?”, 4/27/15—This was just a couple of days before the draft. Brandon Scherff, who ended up being Redskins’ top pick at No. 5 overall, is not mentioned but he did indeed become the team’s selection. This was Scot McCloughan’s first draft and the identity of the Redskins’ first pick was still a mystery. Although Scherff’s name often came up, most mocks had them going with edge rusher Dante Fowler, who ended up going to the Jaguars at No. 3.

No. 1,500, “Redskins searching for back to back playoff spots”, 9/8/2016—This was a “By the numbers” look at the team as it approached their season opener against the Steelers. They were coming off of a playoff berth in 2015 and, as we know now, their streak of consecutive seasons without going to the playoffs at least two straight years would continue. In 2016 were able to stop a 19-year streak of not having back to back willing seasons, just barely, by going 8-7-1. One more interesting number from the post—Kirk Cousins’ pass completion percentage at home in 2015 was 74.7 percent, the highest in NFL history.

Again, thanks for reading. See you tomorrow for edition No. 2,001.

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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Derrius Guice provides an update on his rehab and says he's still 'strong as an ox'

Derrius Guice provides an update on his rehab and says he's still 'strong as an ox'

It has been a little more than six months since Derrius Guice's rookie season ended on his sixth carry of the Redskins' preseason opener. So, how's the running back's rehab from his torn ACL going?

Well, conveniently enough, Guice chronicled his comeback in a "Derrius Diary" post on his team's website, giving a first person account of how his offseason is progressing.

In that blog, No. 29 first explained how the infections that stemmed from his surgery — infections that set him back two months — really made him question why he was facing so much adversity so early into his career.

"I had to play catch-up, so I had to work a lot harder and spend a lot more hours here, getting rehab in the weight room, catching up on my running and stuff," Guice said. "It was tough, when I already started over in August, and then I had to start over again in December. It was kind of like, what’s going on?"

Once he got past those troubles, though, the 'Skins' 2018 second-rounder has largely been a fixture at the franchise's Ashburn facility. That constant work has helped him get back to full strength in his arms and put him in a place where he's able to sprint at 100-percent in a straight line.

Guice wrote that he's not doing any lateral movements at full speed yet and he still wants to keep building up his legs, but with more than five months until training camp, he's got the time to do so. 

"We're right there," he said. "We just take it week to week. I’m still strong as an ox. We’re getting it back." 

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How Marquise Brown, Cody Ford, and other prospects shape the Redskins' debate of supply vs. demand

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How Marquise Brown, Cody Ford, and other prospects shape the Redskins' debate of supply vs. demand

Let’s put down the Kyler Murray/Dwayne Haskins/general quarterback talk for a moment – and just a moment – to focus on other needs for the Redskins. 

Namely, what areas could Washington consider in the first two rounds of the 2019 NFL Draft? 

Actually, we’ve done that exercise. Depending on what transpires in free agency and if any salary cap surprises are forthcoming, the list includes wide receiver, guard, edge rusher, inside linebacker, safety and, yes, a signal caller. 

What becomes interesting is the game of supply vs. demand.

READ THE LATEST 2019 NFL MOCK DRAFT

Take for example the receivers. The need is evident. 

Jamison Crowder enters free agency coming off an injury-plagued 29-catch season. The underwhelming Josh Doctson is somehow heading to a fourth NFL campaign. Speed threat Paul Richardson, last off-season’s significant addition, landed on injured reserve halfway through the year. We can talk ourselves into 2018 rookies Trey Quinn, Cams Sims, and Darvin Kidsy, but they remain unproven options. 

Examining this lot is why some draft analysts send a receiver to Washington in their mock drafts. The logic exists. Not only does the Redskins need help, but the first target likely does not off the board any earlier than the 15th overall selection owned by Washington. 

Want blinding speed and slot replacement for Crowder? Oklahoma’s Marquise Brown is the runaway option -- or at least he was before undergoing foot surgery last month for a LisFranc injury, ESPN reported Monday.

Prefer a power forward type for those plays in traffic? Mississippi’s D.K. Metcalf, a hulking 6-foot-4 target, may emerge as the top-rated receiver if the medical folk are cool with his progress following a neck injury that ended his final season with the Rebels. 

For the highlight tape faction, Arizona State’s N’Keal Harry should be a familiar name after hauling in one absurd catch after another. A.J. Brown, Metcalf’s teammate at Ole Miss, NC State’s Kelvin Harmon, Ohio State’s Parris Campbell, South Carolina’s Deebo Samuel, and Stanford’s J.J. Arcega-Whiteside also received first-round love early in the mock draft season.

Only Marquise Brown and Metcalf are likely candidates at 15 based on consensus, but injuries cloud their upside. If they suit game-planning desires – and are genuinely among the best-player-available candidates on Washington’s big board, rock on. Otherwise, this is where the idea of quality vs. quantity kicks in.

READ THE LATEST 2019 NFL MOCK DRAFT

ESPN’s current draft prospect rankings include eight receivers among the top 52 overall prospects and 14 receivers within the top 100. CBS offers a similar breakdown: also eight receivers among the top 52 overall prospects and 15 named within the top 103. 

As a reminder, the Redskins currently have picks 15, 46 and 77 plus a compensatory third-round pick from Kirk Cousins signing with the Vikings. Washington shouldn’t wait on receiver just cause, but options exist on Day 2 if it does. 

Also, consider numerous teams have pass-catching concerns. The Browns, Ravens, Raiders, Packers, Bills and Broncos are among the teams with WR needs selecting between Washington's first and second-round picks.

The collection of defensive end/edge rushers is even more robust throughout the top 100, particularly at the top. Based on the latest NBCS Sports Washington mock draft, five options are off the board thru 15 picks. 

Outside linebacker is a potential high need should starter Preston Smith not return – minimal talks have gone created no movement, a source tells NBC Sports Washington. Considering the premium put on getting after the passer, the Redskins should rush to add help even if they believe Ryan Anderson replaces Smith in the starting lineup. Should they wait, options exist in rounds two and three.

Now consider inside linebacker. The Redskins seem likely to jettison Zach Brown this off-season, leaving Mason Foster and a group of young players, all of whom were selected with Day 3 picks. If Washington wants help, it better bounce. ESPN ranks four ILB among the top 100 including LSU’s Devin White (11) and Michigan’s Devin Bush (18).

The Redskins also have a clear need for interior offensive linemen after issues attributed to injuries and a shortage of talent over the last two seasons. 

Similar to receiver waiting works considering an ample supply of Day 2 candidates including Mississippi State’s Elgton Jenkins, Boston College’s Chris Lindstrom, and Texas A&M’s Erik McCoy. 

However, there’s a clear breakout option in Oklahoma’s Cody Ford. The 338-pounder mauler consistently grades out as a Day 1 selection with a draft range starting in the middle of round one. Ford, who played tackle at OU would address the massive hole at left guard and offer protection should injuries befall left tackle Trent Williams.

Guards aren’t typically viewed as must-have players in the first, though Quenton Nelson’s monster rookie season with Indianapolis may change minds. If a team sees the gap between Ford and the rest greater than Brown and Metcalf versus the other receiver options, invoking a quality over quantity argument works.

Mock drafts often include just one round. Those picks are the sexy selections. Alone they do not tell the whole story when it comes to adding immediate help and supply vs. demand.

READ THE LATEST 2019 NFL MOCK DRAFT