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After drafting 10 players, needs remain for the Redskins

After drafting 10 players, needs remain for the Redskins

The Redskins checked off a lot of their needs boxes during the three days of the draft but even with 10 picks they are still left with some holes. Here are the team’s remaining needs.

Nose tackle—This is a copy and paste job here from just about every season since 2010, when they first started running the 3-4 defense. Stevie Tu'ikolovatu, a 6-1, 331-pound load out of USC was available until early in the seventh round. But they bypassed the defensive line entirely after taking Jonathan Allen in the first round. Maybe Phil Taylor can revive his career after missing the last two seasons. Or perhaps they will try to sign Dan Williams, the 330-pound veteran who was let go by the Raiders last week. But it seems that they are headed towards playing with no true nose tackle, a strategy that resulted in the Redskins allowing a league-high 5.0 yards per carry on first down.

RELATED: Grading the Redskins 2017 draft

Inside linebacker—The word is that if Allen was off the board when the Redskins first-round pick came around, inside linebacker Rueben Foster was on the short list of players they would have taken. But after taking Allen they stayed away from the inside linebacker position the rest of the way. They could have taken Zach Cunningham in the second round but they went with outside linebacker Ryan Anderson instead. While the Redskins could have used a young, talented addition to the group they will be OK at the position in 2017. It may be a different story in 2018 when Zach Brown, Will Compton, and Mason Foster are free agents.

Free safety—The plan to have D.J. Swearinger play free safety is dicey. He is more of a natural strong safety and although he played free some in Arizona last year, doing it in spots and doing it 1,000 snaps a year are two different things. They don’t have much choice now. It seems unlikely that Montae Nicholson can fill the role, at least not without a year or two of seasoning. Desmond King of Iowa, who may be able to play sooner, was on the board until early in the fifth round. It’s going to be up to Swearinger to hold down the last line of defense.

MORE REDSKINS: Five Redskins who could lose their jobs to draft picks 

Interior offensive line—The Redskins did take one interior O-lineman in Chase Roullier and he could develop into a starter or at least a reliable backup. But the situation at the position may have called for more. Both backup centers are gone as Kory Lichtensteiger retired and John Sullivan left as a free agent. Starters LG Shawn Lauvao and C Spencer Long are both set to be free agents in 2018. It’s possible that Arie Kouandjio can step into Lauvao’s job but that’s not something they can bank on. This was an extraordinarily weak draft for the offensive line so it’s understandable that they didn’t find anyone else.

Stay up to date on the Redskins! Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerCSN and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Ranking the 2018 Redskins Roster: Revealing 16-30

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Ranking the 2018 Redskins Roster: Revealing 16-30

At NBCSportsWashington.com, we projected the Redskins’ 53-man roster (offensedefense) right after minicamp.

Now we are taking it one step further and ranking the 53 players we think will make the team.

The rankings are determined by who we think will have the most impact on the 2018 Redskins. No consideration was given for past performance or for what a particular player might do down the road. We’ll be revealing the rankings between now and the start of training camp. 

<<CLICK HERE FOR OUR 2018 REDSKINS RANKINGS, PLAYERS 53-16>>

Today we are continuing to reveal the list of the players we ranked from 16-30.

Here are some of the players in our latest update:

—The team’s top draft pick (but not the second pick, who is in a higher-ranked group).  

—Two of the anticipated starting offensive linemen

—The team’s leading rusher from 2016

<<CLICK HERE FOR OUR 2018 REDSKINS RANKINGS, PLAYERS 53-16>>

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10 Questions in 10 days: Do the Redskins have a 1,000-yard WR?

10 Questions in 10 days: Do the Redskins have a 1,000-yard WR?

With Redskins Training Camp set to begin July 26th, JP Finlay takes a look at 10 of the most pressing questions for the Burgundy and Gold before the team heads to Richmond. 

No. 10: Major questions at linebacker on Redskins depth chart 

No. 9: What is Kevin O’Connell's new role in Redskins offense?

No. 8: More investments on D-Line, but who goes where?

No. 7: Do the Redskins have a 1,000-yard WR?

No Redskins receiver broke the 1,000-yard mark in 2017, and bluntly, the receiver position did not unfold like the front office designed.

Terrelle Pryor proved a free agent flop, and while Josh Doctson flashed talent, the consistency did not follow. Jamison Crowder led Washington with 789 receiving yards while 34-year-old tight end Vernon Davis was the team's second-leading receiver. 

The Redskins need more at wideout in 2018, and the front office acted on it. 

The team signed Paul Richardson in free agency, and advanced statistics suggest he could make an impact right away. Richardson has vertical speed in a way the organization hasn't had since DeSean Jackson went to Tampa two seasons ago. 

Doctson could emerge as a true No. 1 WR, and Richardson's speed will help. Sources inside Redskins Park question if Doctson is the type of wideout that can beat cornerbacks off the line. Instead, the team believes Doctson is best when using his athleticism to go up and get balls. That skill set was best illustrated for Doctson in the end zone, where he grabbed six TDs last season. 

Crowder could again lead the Redskins in receiving yards. New QB Alex Smith likes to look to his inside receivers, and with defenses having to account for more speed on the field in Richardson, Crowder should get plenty of open looks. 

Ultimately, the question is if the Redskins will have a 1,000-yard receiver. The answer is an unknown, but the evidence suggests they won't.

No 1,000-yard wideout does not spell doom for Washington. In the last two seasons, eight of 12 NFC playoff teams had a receiver get into four digits. Among the teams that did not get that kind of production from one wide receiver: 2017 Philadelphia Eagles. Remember, that team won the Super Bowl. 

Further down the roster, Washington has contributors but unlikely a breakout star. Maurice Harris has great hands and Robert Davis has shown plenty of athleticism, but significant production would be a surprise. Rookie Trey Quinn could be a player that helps the 'Skins, particularly should Crowder get banged up this year like he did last year, but a 1,000-yard season for a 7th-round rookie seems pretty absurd. 

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