RICHMOND—As the Redskins start up their preseason against the Patriots tomorrow you will hear a lot about competition for roster spots. And while there is some of that, the majority of the roster is already set in stone. How much of it is locked in? Let’s look at the players who are certain to be on the roster after it is cut to 53 on September 1.

Offense (18): QB’s Alex Smith and Colt McCoy; RB Derrius Guice, Chris Thompson, and Rob Kelley, TE’s Jordan Reed, Jeremy Sprinkle, and Vernon Davis; WR’s Josh Doctson, Jamison Crowder, and Paul Richardson; OL Trent Williams, Shawn Lauvao, Chase Roullier, Brandon Scherff, Morgan Moses, Ty Nsekhe, and Geron Christian

Most of these don’t need any explanation. Some may doubt the inclusion of Kelley as a lock, but after watching him perform in training camp and listening to what Jay Gruden has said about him, it’s very difficult to see him getting cut.

Others, like WR’s Maurice Harris and Trey Quinn, are starting to look like locks, but it’s premature to put them on the 53 with three and a half weeks to go.

Defense (21): DL’s Daron Payne, Jonathan Allen, Matt Ioannidis, Anthony Lanier, and Tim Settle, LB’s Preston Smith, Ryan Kerrigan, Pernell McPhee, Ryan Anderson, Mason Foster, Zach Brown, Josh Harvey-Clemons, and Shaun Dion Hamilton, CB’s Josh Norman, Orlando Scandrick, Quinton Dunbar, and Fabian Moreau, Safeties D.J. Swearinger, Montae Nicholson, Troy Apke, and Deshazor Everett


(Note: The assumption here is that Stacy McGee will be on PUP when the season starts; otherwise, he would be a lock)

I know some will question Hamilton and especially Apke. The fact that the two are draft picks from this year gives them a lot of security, especially Apke. They just aren’t going to move on from a fourth-round pick four months after they drafted him. They did cut sixth-round pick Robert Davis last year, but the coaches and other players did not rave about his play and football IQ the way they have Hamilton.

Specialists: K Dustin Hopkins, P Tress Way, and LS Nick Sundberg also are locks.

So total it up and you have 42 locks. Add in those who are not quite locks but who are very likely to be on the 53—Quinn, Harris, OL Tony Bergstrom, DL Ziggy Hood, and LB Zach Vigil—and you have a total of 47 locks and near lock. That leaves six open roster spots with remaining 43 players on the 90-man roster competing for them.

For those on the good side of the bubble, life is great. If you’re on the wrong side, the odds are long.

Redskins 2018 training camp news

-Camp battles: Plenty of questions in running back competition
-Redskins Talk podcast: The guys project the 53

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