Quick Links

Redskins paid for potential in Paul Richardson, Ravens paid for dependability in Ryan Grant


Redskins paid for potential in Paul Richardson, Ravens paid for dependability in Ryan Grant

The Ravens paid Ryan Grant a lot of money. A lot of money. How much?

How does a $10 million signing bonus sound? Or $14.5 million guaranteed?

It's true, all of it, those are just the sexiest parts of a four-year deal that could be worth as much as $29 million. 

For some Redskins fans, this deal is easy to dismiss. But for Baltimore, the deal could make sense. 


Think about a few things, starting with the fact that Grant hasn't missed a game in four seasons. 

No Ravens wideout with at least 10 catches in 2017 played a full season, and most of them played even less. Breshad Perriman, a first-round pick in 2015, has started four games in three years. 

Last season, Ravens leading receiver Mike Wallace posted totals of 52 catches for 748 yards and four touchdowns. Joe Flacco targeted the 31-year-old Wallace 92 times.

Kirk Cousins targeted Grant nearly 30 less times, but the 27-year-old made just seven fewer catches and had the same amount of touchdowns. 

Grant was the Redskins most consistent receiver in 2017, and the Ravens had no wideout that anyone would label consistent.

Beyond that, Grant has an impeccable reputation among coaches and teammates as a hard worker. Don't believe it? Let his former Redskins teammates explain. 

Then there is the matter of the NFL salary cap. 

It's a good time to be a free agent. Sammy Watkins had less than 600 yards receiving last year, and landed a contract paying him $16 million. PER SEASON. 

The Redskins signed Paul Richardson to a deal worth as much as $40 million and $20 million guaranteed over five years. 

Richardson is a big-play threat with elite speed, two things Grant isn't. But Richardson has also finished two of his four NFL seasons on the injured reserve, while Grant has never missed a game. 

Make no mistake, the Redskins paid for higher potential with Richardson than Grant showed in four seasons with Washington. 

For the Ravens, however, it might have made sense to pay for the high floor of Grant. Baltimore hasn't had a dependable wideout for some time. Grant gives the Ravens dependability, and durability, and those attributes cost money too. 

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayNBCS for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

Quick Links

Rushing to judgment on Dwayne Haskins? Maybe these numbers will change your mind

Rushing to judgment on Dwayne Haskins? Maybe these numbers will change your mind

Dwayne Haskins has thrown 57 passes in his first two NFL starts, and while everyone — from Dwayne to his coaches to his teammates to Redskins fans — would've liked those attempts to have generated more production and success, it's necessary to keep that number in mind.

Again: He's thrown just 57 passes as a starter in the NFL.

Despite that miniscule amount, some are rushing to judgment about the rookie's long-term future in the league. It's more than fine to look at what he's done through two starts and closely analyze it and even criticize some of it, but it's far too early to say definitively what he will become as a pro.

(Note: His appearances against the Giants and Vikings aren't being taken into consideration in this story, due to him coming into both contests while trailing and without a full week of reps with the first-stringers. He struggled in New York and Minnesota, but he was put in spots where struggles were almost certain.)

To put it simply: His past two efforts, while discouraging, don't mean he's a completely doomed passer who should start considering other careers. And to emphasize that fact, here's an exercise.

Let's put the stat lines from a few quarterbacks' first two starts next to each other, but withhold their names. For example, check out what this pair of signal callers did in their first and second times out as the No. 1 option: 

  • QB A - 34-of-52 (65.3-percent completion rate), 466 yards, 6 TDs, 0 INTs
  • QB B - 34-of-67 (50.7-percent completion rate), 357 yards, 1 TD, 5 INTs

QB A is a baller while QB B is a scrub, right? Not exactly. QB A is Marcus Mariota. QB B is Matthew Stafford. Mariota is currently sitting behind Ryan Tannehill and almost surely won't be a Titan in 2020, while Stafford has been entrenched in Detroit since 2009.

Here's another comparsion: 

  • QB A - 45-of-66 (68.1-percent completion rate), 446 yards, 3 TDs, 1 INT
  • QB B - 22-of-46 (47.8-percent completion rate), 319 yards, 1 TD, 2 INTs

Look at that 20-plus percent difference in completion percentage between QB A and QB B, plus the large edge the former has over the latter in yardage. Well, QB A is EJ Manuel and QB B is Matt Ryan. Yep.

The point of this story is setting in by now, but here's one more side-by-side: 

  • QB A - 34-of-57 (59.6-percent completion rate), 358 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT 
  • QB B - 43-of-76 (56.6-percent completion rate), 533 yards, 3 TDs, 3 INTs 

QB A doesn't come close to matching QB B's yardage output, but he does have a slightly better (though still not ideal) completion percentage and two fewer picks. Turns out, QB A is actually Dwayne Haskins while QB B is Andrew Luck. If there were any folks in Indy ready to call Luck a bust through two starts, they surely now realize how foolish they were being then.

Of course, there have been young players — like Aaron Rodgers and Patrick Mahomes — who looked like stars the minute they took over. Unfortunately, Haskins doesn't find himself on that immediate path.

Also, while it'd be unfair for the Redskins to make a decision on whether Haskins is the answer after he's started twice, the reality is he may only get six more chances. Washington is going to have a premium draft pick next April and could choose another highly touted arm. It doesn't need to settle on how it feels about Haskins yet, but that date could be coming somewhat soon, meaning he must improve quickly.

Regardless, those who want to grade Haskins and evaluate him right now absolutely can, but those who want to call it one way or the other need to stop. As the above numbers show, if two starts was the be-all and end-all for pro passers, Marcus Mariota would be a legend while Matt Ryan would be selling insurance.


Quick Links

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.