Redskins

Quick Links

An easy choice for Redskins Special Teams Player of the Year

An easy choice for Redskins Special Teams Player of the Year

With the 2017 offseason about to kick into high gear, Redskins Insiders JP Finlay and Rich Tandler are going to take one last look at 2016 in the coming days. That’s right, it’s time to hand out awards for Coach of the Year, Special Teams Player of the Year, Rookie of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year and Offensive Player of the Year.

Yesterday we picked our top coaches. Today we select the Special Teams Player of the Year.

Tandler: The Redskins’ special teams slid back from being one of the better units in the NFL (6th in the NFL in DVOA) to the middle of the pack (15th in DVOA). Tress Way saw his punting average decline and Dustin Hopkins went from being Mr. Automatic to a question mark as he missed some very makeable and important field goals. But one player who improved from 2015 was punt returner Jamison Crowder. His average per return two years ago was 5.3 yards, last among all NFL players with enough returns to qualify. This year it jumped to 12.1 per return, good enough to earn a spot as an alternate in the Pro Bowl. Even if it had been a good season on special teams as a whole Crowder likely would have been in the running for player of the year. In 2016 his selection was a no-brainer.

RELATED: Redskins offensive coordinator resume: Bill Callahan

Finlay: Well, Tandler kinda said it all. Crowder had a breakout season and delivered the Redskins their first NFL punt return leader since Brian Mitchell in 1994. Not only did Crowder improve field position consistently, he did it in big games and at big spots. Late in the year, some teams tried to kick away from Crowder or pin him on the sideline, the truest mark of respect for an elite returner. 

RELATED: 2017 NFL MOCK DRAFT 1.0

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN and @Rich_TandlerCSN for live updates or click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTunes, here for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

 

Quick Links

Redskins are keeping Greg Manusky, and they swear it's not because the other guys said no

Redskins are keeping Greg Manusky, and they swear it's not because the other guys said no

In the weeks since the 2018 season ended, the Redskins have had various levels of contact with Todd Bowles, Steve Wilks and Gregg Williams.

All three men have extensive experience as defensive coordinators and all three men got new jobs already this offseason in that position. 

Now, after Bowles, Wilks and Williams picked up those new jobs, The Washington Post reported that the Redskins will keep Greg Manusky as defensive coorinator. He's already under contract. 

The meetings with all the other guys? A source told the Post that the Redskins wanted to get "different perspectives" on improving the defense for 2019.

Different perspectives. From the three hottest coordinator names on the coaching market. Sure. 

That said, Manusky is not the sole reason the Redskins fell apart in the second half of the 2018 season. In fact, he's probably not in the Top 5 reasons. 

The Washington defense improved in Manusky's second season as defensive coordinator and looked like a fierce unit in the first half of the year. The team made tremendous strides in rush defense and proved to be quite good at forcing turnovers.

Late in the season, verbal spats with safety DJ Swearinger might have undermined Manusky's status with the defense. But the team decided to release Swearinger, cementing the coach's authority. It also helped that emerging leader Jonathan Allen came out and vocally supported Manusky and his defensive schemes. 

At this point, the Redskins have no choice but to say the team was keeping Manusky all along.

If the organization was interested in other candidates at defensive coordinator, and it sure seemed like they were, those guys found other jobs. The marketplace isn't packed with other candidates with brighter resumes to replace Manusky, so the team is smart to bring back the incumbent. 

The process was awkward, regardless of what gets said now. Manusky is a professional, and has been coaching in the NFL for more than a decade. He understands how business gets done. 

Now, Manusky will be back, and there is good young talent on the Redskins defense, especially up front. 

The guess here is Manusky will say he always expected to be back and never stopped working on getting better for 2019. Now he gets the chance to show it. 

MORE REDSKINS NEWS

Quick Links

You're going to love Chris Thompson's story about the time he first met Adrian Peterson

You're going to love Chris Thompson's story about the time he first met Adrian Peterson

Chris Thompson is an accomplished player in the NFL. Despite being a fifth round pick, Thompson has made it to a second contract, something more than half of the league never does. 

In six seasons with the Redskins, Thompson has nearly 2,500 yards from scrimmage and 15 touchdowns. At times, he's been among the best third down backs in the NFL. 

This is a long way of establishing that Chris Thompson is an accomplised football player. Redskins fans know that.

Adrian Peterson didn't. 

Not many people would share that story, so good for Thompson for doing it. Let's add that Peterson joined the Redskins after offseason workouts and training camp, the normal time for new players to get to know each other. Peterson signed up with the Redskins in the middle of August, well after the regular get-to-know-you period had closed. 

Still, that's a tough break for Thompson. 

Peterson is a legend in the NFL, one of the best running backs to ever play the game. When he joined the Redskins, a number of players watched him work in practice with the hint of awe in their eyes. He proved to be a great teammate and a strong presence in the locker room.

By the end of the year, Peterson was obviously a leader for the Redskins. Players looked up to him, even if he didn't know their name when the year started.

MORE REDSKINS NEWS

[embed]<iframe src="https://art19.com/shows/f1339a3e-06a7-41d6-bc8b-77df06fb8eae/episodes/e8838f8c-2798-4c8a-acd9-6963ef9de6c8/embed?theme=light-blue" style="width: 100%; height: 200px; border: 0 none;" scrolling="no"></iframe>[/embed