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Fantasy Fix: Todd Gurley running hot in Week 5 rankings

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Fantasy Fix: Todd Gurley running hot in Week 5 rankings

The Week 5 fantasy football rankings are up along with a potpourri of notes, thoughts and whatnot to hopefully help with lineup and season-long decisions...

During my weekly fantasy football podcast, we the following: If we redrafted leagues right now, which running backs would you select over Rams rookie Todd Gurley, who dominated in his first full game last week. My answer:

Adrian Peterson

Le'Veon Bell

Jamaal Charles

Eddie Lacy

Matt Forte

Marshawn Lynch

That's it, that's list.

Jeremy Hill is close, but he must fend off Giovani Bernard every game. LeSean McCoy is hurt. C.J. Anderson is a mess and DeMarco Murray is currently lost. DeVonta Freeman isn't there yet, but ask me again if he produces against the Redskins formidable run defense. Mark Ingram is producing in all formats, but C.J. Spiller and Khiry Robinson might snake valuable touches.

Gurley looked like a rock star in the second half of the Rams' surprising road win against the Cardinals. Not only are we talking talent, but opportunity. St. Louis' offense lacks playmakers, meaning it will lean heavily on the powerful runner plenty going forward.

His Week 5 matchup at Green Bay isn't ideal; the Packers have only allowed 102 rushing yards combined over the last three weeks. Oh, you're still starting the rookie, just don't expect tier 1 level production this time, but close enough.

  • If there are any running backs I didn't mention that you would select over Gurley, let us know in the comments section.

Quarterbacks

  1. Tom Brady - NE at Dal
  2. Aaron Rodgers - GB vs. StL
  3. Matt Ryan - ATL vs. Was
  4. Philip Rivers - SD vs. Pit
  5. Peyton Manning - DEN at Oak
  6. Carson Palmer - ARI at Det
  7. Drew Brees - NO at Phi
  8. Eli Manning - NYG vs. SF
  9. Sam Bradford - PHI vs. NO
  10. Russell Wilson - SEA at Cin
  11. Marcus Mariota - TEN vs. Buf
  12. Jay Cutler - CHI at KC
  13. Andy Dalton - CIN vs. Sea
  14. Alex Smith - KC vs. Chi
  15. Tyrod Taylor - BUF at Ten
  16. Joe Flacco - BAL vs. Cle
  17. Blake Bortles - JAC at TB
  18. Josh McCown - CLE at Bal
  19. Kirk Cousins - WAS at Atl
  20. Michael Vick - PIT at SD
  21. Jameis Winston - TB vs. Jac
  22. Matthew Stafford - DET vs. Ari
  23. Nick Foles - STL at GB
  24. Derek Carr - OAK vs. Den
  25. Ryan Mallett - HOU vs. Ind
  26. Colin Kaepernick - SF at NYG
  27. Matt Hasselbeck - IND at Hou
  28. Brandon Weeden - DAL vs. NE

Running backs

  1. Le'Veon Bell - PIT at SD
  2. Jamaal Charles - KC vs. Chi
  3. Eddie Lacy - GB vs. StL
  4. Matt Forte - CHI at KC
  5. Justin Forsett - BAL vs. Cle
  6. Devonta Freeman - ATL vs. Was
  7. Mark Ingram - NO at Phi
  8. Todd Gurley - STL at GB
  9. Marshawn Lynch - SEA at Cin
  10. Arian Foster - HOU vs. Ind
  11. Frank Gore - IND at Hou
  12. Dion Lewis - NE at Dal
  13. Jeremy Hill - CIN vs. Sea
  14. T.J. Yeldon - JAC at TB
  15. Carlos Hyde - SF at NYG
  16. Doug Martin - TB vs. Jac
  17. Latavius Murray - OAK vs. Den
  18. Melvin Gordon - SD vs. Pit
  19. Danny Woodhead - SD vs. Pit
  20. Joseph Randle - DAL vs. NE
  21. Alfred Morris - WAS at Atl
  22. Chris Johnson - ARI at Det
  23. Ronnie Hillman - DEN at Oak
  24. DeMarco Murray - PHI vs. NO
  25. C.J. Anderson - DEN at Oak
  26. LeGarrette Blount - NE at Dal
  27. Giovani Bernard - CIN vs. Sea
  28. Anthony Dixon - BUF at Ten
  29. Ameer Abdullah - DET vs. Ari
  30. C.J. Spiller - NO at Phi
  31. Duke Johnson - CLE at Bal
  32. Rashad Jennings - NYG vs. SF
  33. Matt Jones - WAS at Atl
  34. Andre Ellington - ARI at Det
  35. Isaiah Crowell - CLE at Bal
  36. Ryan Mathews - PHI vs. NO
  37. Shane Vereen - NYG vs. SF
  38. Antonio Andrews - TEN vs. Buf
  39. Andre Williams - NYG vs. SF
  40. Darren Sproles - PHI vs. NO
  41. Darren McFadden - DAL vs. NE
  42. Thomas Rawls - SEA at Cin
  43. Lorenzo Taliaferro - BAL vs. Cle
  44. Charles Sims - TB vs. Jac
  45. David Johnson - ARI at Det
  46. Bishop Sankey - TEN vs. Buf
  47. Roy Helu - OAK vs. Den
  48. Khiry Robinson - NO at Phi
  49. Karlos Williams - BUF at Ten
  50. Reggie Bush - SF at NYG
  51. James Starks - GB vs. StL
  52. Alfred Blue - HOU vs. Ind
  53. Christine Michael - DAL vs. NE
  54. Zach Zenner - DET vs. Ari
  55. Fred Jackson - SEA at Cin
  56. Joique Bell - DET vs. Ari
  57. Tevin Coleman - ATL vs. Was
  58. Tre Mason - STL at GB
  59. Chris Thompson - WAS at Atl
  60. Theo Riddick - DET vs. Ari

Wide receivers

  1. Julio Jones - ATL vs. Was
  2. Odell Beckham - NYG vs. SF
  3. Demaryius Thomas - DEN at Oak
  4. Keenan Allen - SD vs. Pit
  5. Randall Cobb - GB vs. StL
  6. Antonio Brown - PIT at SD
  7. Larry Fitzgerald - ARI at Det
  8. DeAndre Hopkins - HOU vs. Ind
  9. Julian Edelman - NE at Dal
  10. Emmanuel Sanders - DEN at Oak
  11. A.J. Green - CIN vs. Sea
  12. Calvin Johnson - DET vs. Ari
  13. Jeremy Maclin - KC vs. Chi
  14. Allen Robinson - JAC at TB
  15. Jordan Matthews - PHI vs. NO
  16. Mike Evans - TB vs. Jac
  17. T.Y. Hilton - IND at Hou
  18. James Jones - GB vs. StL
  19. Pierre Garcon - WAS at Atl
  20. Amari Cooper - OAK vs. Den
  21. Vincent Jackson - TB vs. Jac
  22. John Brown - ARI at Det
  23. Allen Hurns - JAC at TB
  24. Leonard Hankerson - ATL vs. Was
  25. Brandin Cooks - NO at Phi
  26. Donte Moncrief - IND at Hou
  27. Kendall Wright - TEN vs. Buf
  28. Alshon Jeffery - CHI at KC
  29. Terrance Williams - DAL vs. NE
  30. Percy Harvin - BUF at Ten
  31. Rueben Randle - NYG vs. SF
  32. Travis Benjamin - CLE at Bal
  33. Martavis Bryant - PIT at SD
  34. Anquan Boldin - SF at NYG
  35. Nelson Agholor - PHI vs. NO
  36. Kamar Aiken - BAL vs. Cle
  37. Golden Tate - DET vs. Ari
  38. Eddie Royal - CHI at KC
  39. Michael Crabtree - OAK vs. Den
  40. Doug Baldwin - SEA at Cin
  41. Michael Floyd - ARI at Det
  42. Marvin Jones - CIN vs. Sea
  43. Tavon Austin - STL at GB
  44. Willie Snead - NO at Phi
  45. Marques Colston - NO at Phi
  46. Jamison Crowder - WAS at Atl
  47. Robert Woods - BUF at Ten
  48. Steve Johnson - SD vs. Pit
  49. Kenny Britt - STL at GB
  50. Torrey Smith - SF at NYG
  51. Jermaine Kearse - SEA at Cin
  52. Cole Beasley - DAL vs. NE
  53. Sammy Watkins - BUF at Ten
  54. Marlon Brown - BAL vs. Cle
  55. Ryan Grant - WAS at Atl
  56. Dorial Green-Beckham - TEN vs. Buf
  57. Dwayne Harris - NYG vs. SF
  58. Ty Montgomery - GB vs. StL
  59. Mohamed Sanu - CIN vs. Sea
  60. Malcom Floyd - SD vs. Pit

Tight ends

  1. Rob Gronkowski - NE at Dal
  2. Travis Kelce - KC vs. Chi
  3. Charles Clay - BUF at Ten
  4. Owen Daniels - DEN at Oak
  5. Martellus Bennett - CHI at KC
  6. Jason Witten - DAL vs. NE
  7. Delanie Walker - TEN vs. Buf
  8. Jimmy Graham - SEA at Cin
  9. Antonio Gates - SD vs. Pit
  10. Tyler Eifert - CIN vs. Sea 
  11. Coby Fleener - IND at Hou
  12. Richard Rodgers - GB vs. StL
  13. Derek Carrier - WAS at Atl
  14. Maxx Williams - BAL vs. Cle
  15. Heath Miller - PIT at SD
  16. Dwayne Allen - IND at Hou
  17. Zach Ertz - PHI vs. NO
  18. Jared Cook - STL at GB
  19. Gary Barnidge - CLE at Bal
  20. Larry Donnell - NYG vs. SF
  21. Vernon Davis - SF at NYG
  22. Ladarius Green - SD vs. Pit
  23. Crockett Gillmore - BAL vs. Cle
  24. Eric Ebron - DET vs. Ari
  25. Jordan Reed - WAS at Atl

Kickers

  1. Justin Tucker - BAL vs. Cle
  2. Stephen Gostkowski - NE at Dal
  3. Matt Bryant - ATL vs. Was
  4. Mason Crosby - GB vs. StL
  5. Cairo Santos - KC vs. Chi
  6. Josh Brown - NYG vs. SF
  7. Steven Hauschka - SEA at Cin
  8. Brandon McManus - DEN at Oak
  9. Adam Vinatieri - IND at Hou
  10. Chandler Catanzaro - ARI at Det
  11. Josh Lambo - SD vs. Pit
  12. Dan Bailey - DAL vs. NE
  13. Dan Carpenter - BUF at Ten
  14. Sebastian Janikowski - OAK vs. Den
  15. Robbie Gould - CHI at KC
  16. Caleb Sturgis - PHI vs. NO
  17. Greg Zuerlein - STL at GB
  18. Matt Prater - DET vs. Ari
  19. Zach Hocker - NO at Phi
  20. Mike Nugent - CIN vs. Sea

Defenses

  1. New York Giants - NYG vs. SF
  2. Denver Broncos - DEN at Oak
  3. Arizona Cardinals - ARI at Det
  4. Buffalo Bills - BUF at Ten
  5. Seattle Seahawks - SEA at Cin
  6. Green Bay Packers - GB vs. StL
  7. Kansas City Chiefs - KC vs. Chi
  8. Baltimore Ravens - BAL vs. Cle
  9. Cincinnati Bengals - CIN vs. Sea
  10. New England Patriots - NE at Dal
  11. San Diego Chargers - SD vs. Pit
  12. Atlanta Falcons - ATL vs. Was
  13. Houston Texans - HOU vs. Ind
  14. Indianapolis Colts - IND at Hou
  15. Jacksonville Jaguars - JAC at TB
  16. Philadelphia Eagles - PHI vs. NO
  17. Pittsburgh Steelers - PIT at SD
  18. Cleveland Browns - CLE at Bal
  19. St. Louis Rams - STL at GB
  20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - TB vs. Jac

RELATED: Julio Jones set to test Redskins' banged up secondary

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Need to Know: Redskins player one-liners, offense

Need to Know: Redskins player one-liners, offense

Here is what you need to know on this Monday, May 21, one day before the Washington Redskins start OTAs.  

Redskins player one-liners, offense

A few weeks ago, I did an early projection of the Redskins’ 53-man roster on offense and defense. As the team gets ready for OTAs here is a comment on each player expected to make the team on offense; the defense will be up tomorrow. 

Quarterbacks

—It seems likely that Alex Smith will jump right into the leadership role on the offense, unlike his predecessor, who often seemed to be a reluctant leader. 

—Since Smith has missed a few games with injuries here and there, the chances of the team needing Colt McCoy to come in and win a key game are greater than they were the past three years. 

Kevin Hogan has from now until the end of the season to show that he can be a viable No. 2 quarterback to help ensure that he has a job here in 2019. 

Running backs

—It’s been a while around here since expectations were this high for a player picked late in the second round but Derrius Guice will try to meet them. 

Chris Thompson could be ready to participate in OTAs but look for him to get a very light workload if he puts on a helmet at all. 

—If Rob Kelley wants to be a regular on the 46-man game day inactive list he will have to play a lot of special teams, something he has done sparingly in his two years in the league. 

—Since the team likely will monitor Guice’s workload as a rookie, Samaje Perine will get some carries in key situations this year. 

Wide receivers

—While Josh Doctson does need to get more chances to use his huge catch radius and take balls away from defenders, he also could benefit by working to get more separation on a regular basis. 

—Smith was one of the best deep ball throwers in the league last year and if he is going to maintain that status he will need to look for Paul Richardson at least a few times per game. 

—After his play leveled off in his second and third years in the league, will Jamison Crowder have a contract year breakout? 

—It will be interesting to see what Maurice Harris can do if he stays healthy and get some consistent playing time. 

—Will Trey Quinn be a project or will the last pick in the draft have some instant impact on the offense? 

Tight ends

—​Jordan Reed could be an All-Pro or he could be a cap casualty in 2019. 

—The numbers say that Vernon Davis needs to have Reed on the field to be consistently productive; he had no more than two receptions in any of the last six games. 

—​Jeremy Sprinkle will be relied upon to block and play special teams and anything he produces in the receptions department will be a bonus. 

Offensive line

—After making the Pro Bowl while dealing with a serious knee injury last year, who knows what Trent Williams can accomplish if he can, you know, practice during the week.

—Right now Shawn Lauvao is the Redskins’ starter at left guard but a trade or free agent signing could change that in a heartbeat.

—Jay Gruden has a great deal of confidence in Chase Roullier as the starting center and the hope is that he keeps the job for many years to come. 

—Will Brandon Scherff take the next step and attain All-Pro status?

—​Morgan Moses dealt with injuries to both ankles last year, but he was the only offensive lineman who didn’t miss at least two starts.

—If I had to bet right now I’d say that Ty Nsekhe will start the season as the backup tackle on both sides and not as the starting left guard. 

—As long as Nsekhe is the swing tackle, Geron Christin is likely to be inactive on game days. 

—​Tyler Catalina will have to battle his way onto the roster but his ability to play both guard and tackle will land him on the 53. 

—​Tony Bergstrom is the answer to the question, “Who is the Redskins backup center?”

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

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Timeline  

Days until:

—Minicamp (6/12) 22
—Training camp starts (7/26) 67
—Preseason opener @ Patriots (8/9) 81

The Redskins last played a game 140 days ago. They will open the 2018 NFL season at the Cardinals in 112 days. 

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Need to Know: Tandler's Take—The best- and worst-case scenarios for the 2018 Redskins

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Need to Know: Tandler's Take—The best- and worst-case scenarios for the 2018 Redskins

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, May 20, two days before the Washington Redskins start OTAs.  

Best- and worst-case scenarios for the 2018 Redskins

Last week I took a stab at figuring out what the best-case and worst-case scenarios were for the key players on offense and defense. While individual stats are fun to track, it’s what the team does that really matters. What range of outcomes is realistic for the 2018 Redskins? While anything is possible, here are my thoughts on the best they are likely to be able to do and the worst. 

In both cases, I am assuming that the Redskins have reasonably good fortune when it comes to injuries and that the good and bad bounces of the ball equal out over the course of the season. 

Worst case: 6-10, last in NFC East

This is based mostly on Alex Smith having a tough time adjusting to Jay Gruden’s offense, his new teammates, and the NFC. Thinking he could struggle is not just negative thinking, there is history to back it up. 

Smith was traded from the 49ers to the Chiefs in 2013. In his first nine games, he completed just 59.7 percent of his passes with nine touchdowns and four interceptions He had an adjusted net yards per attempt of 5.23. Had he finished the season there he would have ranked 28th in the NFL. His passer rating was 81.4, which would have ranked 25th. It’s safe to say he was off to a very slow start. 

But the Chiefs went 8-1 in those nine games. It is doubtful that the Redskins could survive such a slow start. In the past three seasons, with Kirk Cousins at quarterback, they were 4-17 in games where Cousins’ passer rating was under 90. If you drop the ceiling to 81, the record drops to 0-14. 

Kansas City managed to start 9-0 in 2013 because of a running game that produced at least 100 yards rushing every game and a defense that got at least one takeaway every game and got three or more turnovers in a game five times. 

Could the Redskins duplicate that and survive a slow start by Smith? It’s possible, but this is the worst-case scenario. And there is no guarantee that the Redskins will significantly improve a running attack that was 27thin the league last year or a rushing defense that was dead last. 

Offensively, the hope is that Derrius Guice will improve the running game. But rookies are, well rookies. And being a high draft pick is no guarantee of success. In the past three drafts, 20 running backers were drafted in the first three rounds. Of those players, four rushed for 750 yards or more as rookies. Maybe Guice will be one of the productive players but the odds are not in his favor. This isn’t saying he will be a bust; however, he may not have instant impact. 

One other note about the rushing game. It’s important to remember that both tackles are coming off of surgery, the right guard was injured last year, the center has all of six starts under his belt, and left guard remains up in the air. Maybe everything will hum when the season starts but that seems like a tall order. 

Improvement in the stopping the run also relies at least in part on rookies. Daron Payne will have an adjustment period as will Tim Settle. The inside linebacker spot should be stronger but it’s hard to say that it will be a strength. The rushing defense probably won’t be last again, but it may not climb out of the twenties in the rankings. 

The Redskins haven’t been awful at getting takeaways, but they have not done it at a consistently game-changing level. They have three or more takeaways in a game five times in their last 30 games. I don’t see any reason to think that this will change dramatically. 

To put the 6-10 worst-case scenario onto the schedule, the Redskins could go 2-4 in the division with splits against the Cowboys and Giants and getting swept by the Eagles. Against the NFC South, which had three teams with 10 wins or more last year, they might be 1-3. That leaves a split with the AFC South (two of the final eight teams in the playoffs last year) and of their two other NFC games for a 6-10 record. 

Best-case scenario: 10-6, Wild card, win a playoff game

This scenario doesn’t require a whole lot of explanation beyond flipping the elements of the worst case into more positive outcomes. 

Smith could pick up where he left off last year when he completed 67.5 percent of his passes and was third in the league with 7.2 adjusted net yards per attempt. Maybe the yards per attempt will drop some as he tries to find a consistent deep target.

A healthy Jordan Reed would help Smith out tremendously. If Reed can participate in most of training camp, the two could hit the ground running. Smith’s ability to connect with Josh Doctson on some 50-50 balls also will be important. 

As for the running game, Guice could break out early behind a line that gels quickly. It’s not out of the question for him to gain 1,000 yards (that’s just about 65 yards per game), maybe a little more. A healthy Chris Thompson could kick in over 1,000 yards from scrimmage. 

Jonathan Allen and Matt Ioannidis could pick up right where they left off last year before Allen was lost for the season with a foot injury and Ioannidis missed two games with a broken hand and was hampered by the injury for a few weeks after that. That would let Payne and Settle, well, settle into the pro game. 

The Redskins also would need at least to maintain the solid pass defense they had last year. And they would benefit from fewer turnovers on offense (27 last year, 26thin the NFL) and by adding a few takeaways to the 23 they got in 2017.

So how could they pull this off? The would need to go 4-2 in the division, with a sweep of the Giants and splits against Philly and Dallas. They then would need 2-2 records against the NFC South and AFC South. That part of it is probably the toughest task. To get to 10 they would need to beat the Cardinals on the road in the season opener and then have a good day against Aaron Rodgers and get a win over the Packers. It’s not an easy road but if enough pieces fall into place it’s not out of the question. 

A 10-6 record should be good enough for a wild-card spot. If they get through their fairly tough schedule with double-digit wins, they should be good enough to go on the road and take out the three or four seed. 

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:

—Minicamp (6/12) 23
—Training camp starts (7/26) 68
—Preseason opener @ Patriots (8/9) 82

The Redskins last played a game 139 days ago. They will open the 2018 NFL season at the Cardinals in 113 days. 

In case you missed it