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Redskins 2018 position outlook: Wide receiver

Redskins 2018 position outlook: Wide receiver

Training camp opens in about five weeks and we have a break here, giving us time to put the depth chart under the microscope. Over the coming couple of weeks, we will look at every position, compare the group to the rest of the NFL, see if the position has been upgraded or downgraded from last year, and take out the crystal ball to see what might unfold.

Wide receivers

Additions: Paul Richardson (FA), Trey Quinn (Draft-7), Cam Sims (UDFA)
Departures: Ryan Grant, Terrelle Pryor

Starters: Richardson, Josh Doctson, Jamison Crowder (slot)
Other roster locks: None
On the bubble: Robert Davis, Brian Quick, Quinn, Maurice Harris, Sims

How the wide receivers compare

To the rest of the NFL: Except for Crowder, who has been a proven, productive slot receiver in his three seasons in the NFL, this group is filled with question marks. Doctson was inconsistent last year after missing his first year with an injury, Richardson gained 700 in his career year last year, and the backups have had only flashes here and there. As a group, they are below average when compared to the rest of the NFL.

To the 2017 Redskins: Going into last season, things were looking up with Pryor, who was coming off of a 1,000-yard season with the Browns, set to line up with Doctson and Crowder. But even before an ankle injury ended his season after nine games, he was a disappointment with only 20 receptions for 240 yards. It shouldn’t be hard for Richardson to top that. They will, however, have to make up for the departure of Grant, who gained 573 yards receiving last year. I think one of the backups will step up, Doctson's numbers will improve across the board, and the group will be somewhat more productive this year compared to 2017. 

2018 outlook

Biggest upside: Richardson has great speed, an element that was missing from the offense last year. He should mesh well with Alex Smith, who was the NFL’s best deep-ball passer last year. If there is a 1,000-yard receiver in this group, it’s probably Richardson.

Most to prove: Doctson did produce some big plays last year, but this will be a big year for the 2016 first-round pick. He will have to improve on last year’s production if the Redskins are going to pick up the fifth-year option on his contract, a decision that must be made next May. 

Rookie watch: Quinn was the last pick of the draft, but Jay Gruden lobbied for the team to take him earlier. It’s starting to look like Gruden was on to something. Quinn certainly looked like he belongs during offseason practices. There may not be room for Sims on the final 53 but if what he was able to do during the offseason program is an indication he will make it a tough decision. 

Bottom line: Things could really go either way with this group. As noted, Richardson could be a 1,000-yard receiver, but he also could fall short of last year’s 700 yards if he doesn’t mesh with Smith. If the Redskins can figure out how to maximize Doctson’s abilities in the red zone he could threaten the Redskins’ single-season touchdown receptions record (12, accomplished 4 times, last by Ricky Sanders in 1988). He also could be the same guy he was in 2017. A player or two could break out from the group of backups or they all could have the organization looking for replacements next year. How well the group performs will have a considerable impact on the team’s win total. 

Quote-unquote

Jay Gruden on Trey Quinn:

Trey has come in here, and I haven’t heard him talk a whole lot. He’s very quiet. He’s a quiet assassin and he just goes out there and is very detailed in his routes. Ike has done a great job with him, and Trey, when the ball’s in the area, he’s got strong hands. Very quarterback-friendly target. 

More 2018 Redskins

- 53-man roster: Roster projection--Offense
- 53-man roster: Best players 25 or younger

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

 

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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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