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Behind enemy lines: Bengals woeful D getting healthy

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Behind enemy lines: Bengals woeful D getting healthy

Checking out the top headlines, news and notes involving the Marvin Lewis coached Cincinnati Bengals, the Redskinds Week 3 opponent... No doubt the Redskins defense has been less than advertised unless giving up 31.5 points and 405 yards per game is suddenly a good thing (even with the replacement refs, it'snot). Cincinnati's has been worse, not even close to performing like the unit that spearheaded last season's playoff push. After allowing 400 yards in a game twice last season, the Bengals surrendered over 400 in each of their first two games.However, while the locals lost two starters in Brian Orakpo and Adam Carriker, the Bengals expect to have an injuredpass rusher return to the fray. Carlos Dunlap, the Bengals starting left defensive end, was a full participant in Wednesday's practice, puttinghimon track to make his 2012 debut Sunday. The third-year pass rusher, who has 14 sacks in 24 career games,sprained his right knee in Cincinnati's preseason opener. While the Bengals tallied five sacks without Dunlap, they also allowed 35.5 points and 434.5 yardswithout picking off a pass. Corner Dre Kirkpatrick, the Bengals first-round pick out of Alabama, is the only notable Cincinnati defender already ruled out of Sunday's meeting. All those yards allowed by the Bengals, not just about a handful plays; so far Cincinnati has given up 10 or more yards on 37 plays, according to the Associated Press. First downs have been a particular downer, allowing a league-high8.36 per play. After allowing only one 300-yard passing game last season, the Bengals pass defense ranks 29th, one spot ahead of the Redskins.As a reminder, last week the Bengals faced Cleveland's rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden who went from being overmatched and throwing four picksin the opener to passing for 322 yards, two touchdown passes and zero interceptions in his second NFL game. More than one person in my vicinity uttered the following on Sunday while catching the Bengals running a punt back for a touchdown against the Browns: "Pacman is still in the league?"Apparently so. Adam "Pacman" Jones returned the first punt he fielded 81 yards for a touchdown, the fifth of his career and first in Cincinnati. That was enough to gobble up AFC Special Teams Player of the Week honors -and surely added another concern toa Redskins unit already under punt blocking durres.With that lengthy play on their side, the Bengals rank second in punt returns while the Redskins are 28th (6.2 YPR). Running back Bernard Scott is also expected to make his season debut and provide the offense with a change of pace and pass-catching option behind starter BenJarvus Green-Ellis.

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Need to Know: The best cornerbacks the Redskins will face in 2018

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Need to Know: The best cornerbacks the Redskins will face in 2018

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, July 20, six days before the Washington Redskins start training camp.  

The five best cornerbacks the Redskins will face in 2018

This week we’ll be looking at the best of what the Redskins will face during the 2018 season. Today the cornerbacks are up. They are roughly ranked by Pro Football Focus’ coverage metrics, although I did some juggling based on interception totals and other factors. Prior to this, we looked at the best teamsreceivers, running backspass rushers, and quarterbacks

1. Patrick Peterson, Cardinals—The athletic Peterson has been All-Pro three times and has been selected to the Pro Bowl in each of his seven years in the league. He hasn’t had a big interception total since he got seven in 2012, but that is mostly because quarterbacks only throw his way about once every ten snaps he is in coverage. 

2. Jalen Ramsey, Jaguars—I could easily have ranked Ramsey over Peterson. I went with Peterson because he’s been doing it for longer and he’s only 28. Ramsey has justified his No. 5 selection in the 2016 draft. His long arms and ball skills serve him well. He has the size to defend the bigger receivers and the athleticism to be effective against shifty and speedy receivers. 

3. A.J. Bouye, Jaguars—If Alex Smith tries to throw away from Ramsey he will encounter trouble on the other side. It’s been trendy to say that Bouye is underrated for so long he’s in danger of becoming overrated. But he’s not there yet. Bouye was one of four full-time (played at least 60% of snaps) cornerbacks who did not allow a touchdown pass last year and he had by far the most plays in coverage. 

4. Malcolm Butler, Titans—If the Brady-Belichick Patriots don’t win another Super Bowl, the coach’s decision to keep Butler on the bench as Nick Foles shredded the New England secondary will be marked as the end of that era. Maybe Butler isn’t good enough to have made a difference, but it would have been interesting to see. He’s with the Titans now and he will give Smith problems in December. 

5. Marshon Lattimore, Saints—Last year’s defensive rookie of the year plays an aggressive style both in press man coverage and when tackling receivers who have caught the ball. An ankle injury sent him out of the game against the Redskins early, perhaps one of the reasons why Kirk Cousins was able to light them up for 322 yards and three touchdowns. 

Best of the rest: Desmond Trufant, Falcons; Brent Grimes, Bucs; Logan Ryan, Titans;k Jaire Alexander (rookie), Packers

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  @TandlerNBCSand on Instagram @RichTandler

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Timeline 

Days until:

—Training camp starts (7/26) 6
—Preseason opener @ Patriots (8/9) 20
—Roster cut to 53 (9/1) 43

The Redskins last played a game 201 days ago. They will open the 2018 NFL season at the Cardinals in 51 days. 

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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>>