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How Redskins' draft picks could mesh in already packed defensive backfield

How Redskins' draft picks could mesh in already packed defensive backfield

The Redskins’ defensive backfield was crowded before the NFL draft. After the team grabbed two corners and two safeties, there will be a lot of sorting out to do between now and when the season starts in September.

Here are the four defensive backs they took on Friday and Saturday:

  • CB Fabian Moreau, taken in the third round out of UCLA, was a borderline first-round guy before he suffered a torn pectoral muscle lifting weights during his pro day. I’m not quite sure exactly what pumping iron at his pro day does for a cornerback’s draft stock, but that’s water under the bridge. Moreau said that he will be ready for full participation five months from the date of his injury, which was March 22. That will be August 22, when the Redskins are getting ready to play in preseason game No. 3.

RELATED: Grading the Redskins 2017 draft

  • In the fourth round, they took Montae Nicholson, a safety out of Michigan State who showed well at the combine but not on game tape. It’s hard to see him contributing much this year, but perhaps they can coach up the 6-2 prospect.
  • Both of their seventh-round picks were DB’s. First, they took Louisville S Josh Harvey-Clemons, who is 6-4. His NFL.com draft profile compares him to Kam Chancellor, but before he starts making Pro Bowls, he must stay on the field. Multiple failed drug tests got him kicked out of Georgia.
  • CB Joshua Hosley was a four-year starter at Auburn. It would not be shocking to see him compete for the slot corner job, which was an area of weakness for the team last year.

These players will have to fight their way onto the roster that already had 13 defensive backs with NFL experience.

Cornerbacks:

  • Josh Norman (69 NFL games)
  • Bashaud Breeland (45)
  • Kendall Fuller (13)
  • Quinton Dunbar (25)
  • Dashaun Phillips (11)
  • Tharold Simon (20)

Safeties:

  • Su’a Cravens (11)
  • D.J. Swearinger (59)
  • DeAngelo Hall (166)
  • Will Blackmon (96)
  • Deshazor Everett (27)
  • Josh Evans (49)
  • Earl Wolff (18)

It’s early to have a good handle how the depth chart will shake out. Last year, they kept six cornerbacks and five safeties on their initial 53-man roster. They may be able to stretch that to a total of 12 defensive backs, but no more than that will stay around.

At safety, the question is will the Redskins go young or lean toward keeping more experience? Will Nicholson and/or Harvey-Clemons make the team at the expense of Hall and/or Blackmon? Or will Everett be the odd man out?

If they keep six cornerbacks, the decisions to not appear to be as tough. Moreau and Hosley could join Norman, Breeland, Fuller and Dunbar.

We will see how things unfold. Injuries are almost always a factor and someone could be thrust into a much bigger role than anticipated. Moreau’s pec may not heal on schedule, making him a candidate to start the season on the PUP list.

In any case, there should be a lot of fun competition in the back end of the defense during OTAs and minicamp and in Richmond once training camp gets underway.

MORE REDSKINS: Three reasons to like the pick of Ryan Anderson 

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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Redskins vs. Texans Week 11: Date, time, TV channel, live stream, how to watch

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USA TODAY Sports

Redskins vs. Texans Week 11: Date, time, TV channel, live stream, how to watch

Another week, another game where no matter what the Washington Redskins (6-3) will leave their game at first place in the division. 

This week the Redskins host fellow division leader, the Houston Texans (6-3) for a Week 11 match-up. Quite possibly, this could be the final week where Washington faces a team above .500 this season. 

Last week the Redskins gave up over 500 yards to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers but kept them out fo the end zone to preserve a victory. Since then though there was more talk about the fans in the stands than the players out on the field. 

Their injury situation is not much better as Dustin Hopkins is not 100 percent and Samje Perine is also out again for the 'Skins. Good news, though Trent Williams is going to try and gut it out

Houston is unlike any team the Redskins have faced this season, except for perhaps the Carolina Panthers. They have a balanced offense (rush and pass) and a stellar, star-studed defense. With DeShaun Watson, the Texans are never out of a game either. 

The all-time series between the Redskins and Texans is young. Sunday will mark only their fifth ever matchup ant it is tied at 2-2. Houston has won two straight in the series with the last win for the Redskins coming in 2006. 

REDSKINS vs. HOUSTON TEXANS WEEK 11

Who: Washington Redskins vs. Houston Texans

What: Game 10 of the 2018 NFL regular season

When: Sunday, Nov. 18, 2018, 1:00 p.m. ET

Where: FedEx Field, Landover, Maryland

TV Channel: FOX

Live Stream: You can stream Redskins Kickoff Live, Redskins Postgame Live and Redskins Overtime Live right here using the MyTeams by NBC Sports App.

Radio: Redskins Radio Network

Point Spread: Houston, -3

Over/Under: 42.5

Weather: 50 degrees, partly

REDSKINS vs. TEXANS TV SCHEDULE:

8:30 AM: Redskins Nation 
9:00 AM: Redskins 100
9:30 AM: Redskins Kickoff Preview
10:00 AM: Redskins Gameday: D.C. Sports Live
11:00 AM: Redskins Coach's Show
11:30 AM: Inside the Redskins 
12:00 PM: Redskins Kickoff Live (NBCSW+ and the MyTeams App)
4:00 PM: Redskins Postgame Live (NBCSW+ and the MyTeams App)
5:30 PM: Redskins Overtime Live (NBCSW+ and the MyTeams App)

Click here to access NBC Sports Washington's Channel Finder 

REDSKINS 2018 REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE

Week 1: Sun., 9/9, @ Arizona Cardinals (24-6, W)

Week 2: Sun, 9/16, vs. Indianapolis Colts (21-9, L)

Week 3: Sun., 9/23, vs. Green Bay Packers (31-17, W)

Week 4: BYE

Week 5: Mon., 10/8, @ New Orleans Saints, (43-19, L)

Week 6: Sun., 10/14, vs. Carolina Panthers, 1:00 p.m. (23-17, W)

Week 7: Sun., 10/21, vs. Dallas Cowboys, 4:25 p.m. (20-17, W)

Week 8: Sun. 10/28, @ New York Giants, 1:00 p.m. (20-13, W)

Week 9: Sun., 11/4, vs. Atlanta Falcons, 1:00 p.m. (38-14, L)

Week 10: Sun. 11/11, @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 1:00 p.m. (16-3 W)

Week 11: Sun., 11/18, vs. Houston Texans, 1:00 p.m. (CBS)

Week 12: Thu., 11/22, @ Dallas Cowboys, 4:30 p.m. (FOX)

Week 13: Mon., 12/3, @ Philadelphia Eagles, 8:15 (ESPN)

Week 14: Sun., 12/9, vs. New York Giants, 1:00 p.m. (FOX)

Week 15: Sun., 12/16, @ Jacksonville Jaguars, 1:00 p.m. (FOX)

Week 16: Sat., 12/22, @ Tennessee Titans, 4:30 p.m. (CBS)

Week 17: Sun., 12/30, vs. Philadelphia Eagles, 1:00 p.m. (FOX)

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Redskins' D.J. Swearinger wants to show Texans 'what they missed out on'

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USA Today Sports

Redskins' D.J. Swearinger wants to show Texans 'what they missed out on'

In 2015, the Houston Texans cut D.J. Swearinger. And even in 2018, the Redskins safety hasn't forgotten it. 

"It's fun going against my former teams, showing them what they missed out on," Swearinger said this week.

Houston selected Swearinger out of the University of South Carolina in the second round of the NFL Draft. For two years he played fairly well in Houston, but when the staff switched over from Gary Kubiak to Bill O'Brien, things went wrong according to Swearinger. 

"Kubiak let me be myself, let me do whatever as long as I played ball," he said. "O'Brien was a control guy: 'You can't do this. You can't do that.'"

After his release in Houston, Swearinger played in Tampa for a brief period before a good landing place in Arizona. He played well with the Cardinals, and parlayed that experience into a three-year contract with the Redskins in the 2017 offseason. 

Since he's been in Washington, Swearinger has been an ideal teammate and leader. He credits the hard times, stemming from being cut in Houston, to the role he plays now. 

View this post on Instagram

#Houston I Appreciate Coach Gary Kubiak, Coach Wade Phillips, Coach Vance Joseph for Giving Me A Chance Of A Lifetime & Letting Me Be “Myself” My Rookie Year. When They Left My 2nd Year, the New Coaching Staff Would Always Worry About What I Was Doing Or Saying To Other Players 🤔🤔Well, the Young Swagg Had A Hard Time Adjusting To The New System Nor Did I Want To Play Linebacker Every Play, and I Also Was Late A Few Times Too Many...All Apart Of Growing Up & Learning To Be A Pro. There Was A MisUnderstanding With My Db Coach That Lead To Unprofessional Actions By My Head Coach (o’brien) That I Could No Longer Respect! Which Lead To Me Being Cut. That Same Coach Told Me I Would Be Outta The League In 3Years. Unfortunately, My God & Grind Had A Plan And Knew That 6years Later....I Would Make Him Eat His Words! #LiveIn5🤫 #2spoonzswagggu🥄🥄

A post shared by Dj Swearinger (@jungleboi_swaggg) on

With four interceptions this season, Swearinger is tied for the No. 2 spot in the NFL and is a huge part of the Redskins 6-3 start. Playing Houston will mean a lot for the emotional defensive back, especially in a week where emotions seem to be running high. 

Josh Norman and Swearinger voiced frustrations with Redskins fans for not packing FedEx Field for home games. The crowd has booed at times this season, and as Swearinger sees it, "the boos are dumb to me. Very dumb."

Whatever the crowd looks like on Sunday, it's a big opportunity for Swearinger to play against Houston, and against O'Brien. The Texans coach praised Swearinger's work in the years since his release. 

"I think every player that comes into the league, no matter who you are, it is a tough transition from college to professional football and then on top of that you have a coaching change and things like that, that DJ had to deal with," O'Brien said. "I think a lot of players go through that and DJ has obviously done a great job of coming into Washington and really performing at a high level."

This season, Swearinger has played against two of his former teams in Arizona and Tampa. The Redskins won both, and as an outside observer, it seemed like the wins mattered greatly to the safety.

It's rare for a player as young as 27-year-old Swearinger to have already played on four teams. He gets that, and doesn't love it. Against Houston, he can get another win, and the most important one of his three former teams.

"It’s going to be exciting," Swearinger said. "It’s going to be my first time getting a fair chance to face the team that drafted me."

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