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Need to Know: Redskins stock up, stock down Week 2 vs. Colts

Need to Know: Redskins stock up, stock down Week 2 vs. Colts

Here is what you need to know on Monday, September 17, six days before the Washington Redskins host the Green Bay Packers. 

Talking Points

Stock down — One game could be a fluke. Two games can be the start of a trend. Redskins outside linebackers Ryan Kerrigan and Preston Smith have been held without a sack through two games. Smith did get a hit on Andrew Luck that caused an incompletion, but other than that the both of them have been mostly invisible through 120 minutes of football. They are supposed to be the strength of the defense and so far they haven't been. 

Stock up — Safety D.J. Swearinger did everything he could to get his team back in the game. He picked off Luck twice, once in the second quarter and one in the third. The first one, a diving effort of a ball that Mason Foster had tipped, gave the Redskins possession at their own 42. The second one, an ill-advised luck throw into double coverage, gave the offense prime field position at the Indy 29. The result of each possession was a field goal. 

Stock down — The Redskins offensive line had better not break out any more talk of Hogs 2.0 for a while, if ever. The running backs had two yards rushing at halftime. Don’t blame Adrian Peterson and Chris Thompson. They had no place to run against a Colts defense that has no notable run stoppers. Alex Smith rarely had time to throw against a team that has no notable pass rushers. The O-line just didn’t get it done. 

Stock up — LB Mason Foster deflected the first pass that Swearinger intercepted, one example of him being in the right place at the right time. He made eight tackles, including a solid hit after running back Nyheim Hines caught a pass at the line of scrimmage. If the defense had 11 Mason Fosters they might have had a better chance in this game. 

Stock down — In the first quarter the Redskins were trailing 7-0 and they had the Colts backed up at their own three. Luck tried a bubble screen to a running back. CB Josh Norman had a bead on him in the end zone for what would have been a game-changing safety. But Norman missed the tackle and the play went for no gain. Two plays later a pass to T.Y. Hilton got the Colts out of the hole. Norman didn’t do anything later in the game to make up for his missed opportunity. 

Stock down, rapid-fire style — DB coach Torrian Gray didn’t adjust to the fact that Hilton was making key catches one after the other . . . The defensive line didn’t do much at all after dominating in Arizona . . . I’m a big believer that players should get themselves ready to play but certainly, Jay Gruden has to take some of the blame for how flat the team was coming out today. 

Injuries of Note:

T Trent Williams and G Brandon Scherff both left the game briefly with injuries, but both returned. Maurice Harris (concussion) was questionable going into the game and he was inactive. 

The Agenda:

Today: Open locker room 11:30 a.m.; Jay Gruden press conference 3 p.m.

Upcoming: Packers @ Redskins (Sept. 23) 7; Redskins @ Saints (October 8) 22; Cowboys @ Redskins 34

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Redskins turned down Patriots offer of first-round pick for Trent Williams, per source

Redskins turned down Patriots offer of first-round pick for Trent Williams, per source

The Patriots offered the Redskins a first-round pick in a trade for disgruntled left tackle Trent Williams but Washington rebuffed the offer, a source with knowledge of the situation told NBC Sports Washington. 

Kevin Sheehan of Team 980 reported the same news Thursday morning on his radio show. 

That call from New England came a few weeks ago while the Redskins were holding training camp in Richmond, the source explained. The Patriots are no longer pursuing Williams. 

Washington has made clear they don’t intend to trade Williams, which makes sense publicly. Still, there have been at least three teams to contact the Redskins about trading for Williams. 

It’s believed the Redskins want a first and a second-round pick to move on from Williams, who is refusing to report to the team despite having two years left on his contract. 

The reports around Williams’ holdout have been significant, mainly centering around the suggestion that the seven-time Pro Bowler will not return to Washington due to a misdiagnosis from the team’s medical staff last season. 

Multiple sources near Williams have been clear that he will not return to the Redskins and will miss regular-season action. 

Earlier this week, Washington head coach Jay Gruden said there is no update on the Williams situation and he must prepare his team with the players that have reported. 

“It is what it is,” Gruden said.

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Jay Gruden wants to see a statement game from Case Keenum against the Falcons

Jay Gruden wants to see a statement game from Case Keenum against the Falcons

ATLANTA -- Through two games in the preseason Redskins head coach Jay Gruden can't be particularly impressed with his team. Thursday night could change that.

When the Redskins face the Falcons in the third and most important preseason game, Gruden could play his starters as much as the whole first half. In that time, there's plenty he wants to see from his team.

  1. No injuries - It might be redundant to put that at the top of each preseason article, but there is nothing more important for a coaching staff than to escape the meaningless preseason action without major injuries. It's football, guys are going to get banged up, but Washington cannot afford to lose any starters or key reserves in August action. Superstitious or not, Gruden is knocking on wood and lighting candles before his team takes the field in Atlanta.
  2. Making a case - With Colt McCoy out for an unknown period of time, Case Keenum is the presumed starting quarterback for the Redskins when the real action starts Week 1 in Philadelphia. With that in mind, it would be nice to see some offensive efficiency from Keenum. Against the Bengals last week, Keenum started hot but was undone by a few penalties that backed the Redskins up and away from the red zone. Keenum doesn't have a stranglehold on this job either, so it would be a wise move to prove to the coaching staff and Redskins fans that he should be on the field in Philly.
  3. Making a push - After Keenum comes rookie Dwayne Haskins. Through two games he hasn't been terrific, but he's shown flashes of being terrific. The 55-yard touchdown pass he threw last week to Robert Davis is the prettiest downfield toss from a Redskins QB in at least a year, and nobody questions the arm talent or potential of the former Ohio State star. While it seems unlikely Haskins will push for the starting job, with McCoy out, if Keenum struggles and Haskins shines, things could get interesting. It certainly bears watching if Haskins gets time with the first team on the field. 
  4. All the horses - Offensively the Redskins strength should be running the football, and for the first time in over a year, Derrius Guice should take the field in Burgundy and Gold. Gruden has been clear that he just wants to get Guice a few touches before the real action starts in about two weeks, and it makes sense as the charismatic running back is about a year removed from ACL surgery. Redskins fans should expect less than five carries from Guice, but it will be highly valuable to see him take on contact again. Guice, along with veterans Adrian Peterson and Chris Thompson, could form a formidable backfield. 
  5. Keep it up - The starting defense didn't play much against the Bengals, but outside of some dumb penalties, that unit looked very good. The strength of the defense comes up front along the line, and that will get tested against a good Falcons offense. If the Redskins have real designs on a Top 10 defense, they need to prove it against Atlanta. These two teams met Week 9 last year, before Alex Smith was hurt and when the Redskins still looked like a playoff team. The Falcons scored 38 points and ran up nearly 500 yards of total offense in a runaway win at FedEx Field. Top 10 defenses don't give up 500 yards. 

Extra point - The Redskins special teams have been bad through two preseason games. Time to look better, especially with former special teams coach Ben Kotwica now on the Falcons sideline. 

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