Redskins

Quick Links

How Su'a Cravens was utilized as a rookie illustrates Joe Barry's faults

How Su'a Cravens was utilized as a rookie illustrates Joe Barry's faults

Su’a Cravens’ first season was filled with indecision about what position he would play, and while there were lots of reasons Joe Barry got fired, the rookie second-round pick's positioning may have played a role.

Late in the year, Cravens announced via Instagram he would play safety in 2017, despite spending nearly all of 2016 at inside linebacker. That decision came against Joe Barry’s will, per a source with knowledge of the situation, after months of resistance to the switch. 

Drafted in the second round, Cravens came to the 'Skins out of a hybrid safety/linebacker role at USC. Mike Mayock of NFL.com gave the following analysis: "Cravens is an outside linebacker-safety hybrid. He's a really good matchup with pass-catching tight ends. They asked him to do a bunch of stuff at USC. This is a really solid second-round pick."

At Barry’s direction, Cravens started the season at inside linebacker and played the position exclusively. 

RELATED: Rex Ryan not likely to be a candidate for Redskins

Some within the organization wanted Cravens to play safety, but Barry insisted the rookie stay at inside linebacker. Eventually, a source explained, the decision to move Cravens to the secondary was made and Barry was forced to adjust. 

Though Cravens never played at safety for Washington, he was included with the secondary position group during practice at the tail end of the season. Should the ‘Skins have reached the playoffs, sources said Cravens would have played through his arm injury at safety.

Barry wasn’t wrong to want Cravens to learn the linebacker position. For a versatile player, he should know the calls and coverages of the defense. At the same time, the Redskins dealt with numerous injuries as well as some poor play at safety, and as the season progressed, multiple voices at Redskins Park wanted the rookie in the secondary.

Regardless, Cravens stayed at inside linebacker. That decision was not what got Barry fired, but it does show a repeated flaw of the former defensive coordinator. 

Early in the season Barry was slow to let Josh Norman travel to cover opposing team’s best receivers. Later in the year, Barry kept Kendall Fuller in the slot a few weeks too long. And for most of the season, Donte Whitner was a liability at safety. Either Cravens or second-year man Deshazor Everrett deserved a shot.

Liked by his players and most who know him, Barry displayed a continued reluctance to make personnel moves, and it might have been part of Jay Gruden's decision to move on. 

RELATED: 2017 NFL MOCK DRAFT 1.0

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN 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

Contract makes Adrian Peterson a no-risk acquisition for the Redskins

Contract makes Adrian Peterson a no-risk acquisition for the Redskins

Adrian Peterson is truly a no-risk acquisition for the Redskins. 

The 33-year-old running back signed with the Redskins on Monday afternoon, for one year at the NFL minimum salary of $1.015 million according to Field Yates of ESPN

The contract structure means that the Redskins can have him practice for the next week and a half, play in the two remaining preseason games, and then let him go prior to Week 1 and walk away owing him nothing. 

If they do keep him for Week 1 against the Cardinals, his salary for the season will become guaranteed. But if they decide to let him go at some point in the season the payout of the remainder of his salary will be a drop in the bucket of a $176 million salary cap. There is no signing bonus, roster bonus, or other guaranteed salary. 

One more team friendly aspect of this deal is that Peterson will cost less against the cap than the Redskins are paying him. The NFL has something called the veteran minimum benefit, designed to encourage teams to keep older players rather than the younger and cheaper one. Under this benefit, Peterson will count just $630,000 in cap space. That is the same cap charge as Byron Marshall carries. So, if it comes down to choosing between the Marshall and Peterson for a roster spot, the salary cap will not be a factor. 

Apparently, Peterson is anxious to play football and after spending the entire offseason as a free agent who wasn’t drawing much interest, a player who received $11 million guaranteed from the Vikings two years ago will go to work for a fraction of that. 

MORE REDSKINS NEWS:

 

Quick Links

Fantasy Football: Top 200 rankings with tiers

elliott-vs-bengals-usat.png
USA TODAY Sports

Fantasy Football: Top 200 rankings with tiers

Rankings are cool, tiers are better. Here we have nine of them separating the top 200 fantasy football players for 2018. Dive in.

Tier 1

1.  Todd Gurley, LAR RB
 
2.  Le'Veon Bell, PIT RB
 
3.  Ezekiel Elliott, DAL RB
 
4.  David Johnson, ARI RB
 
5.  Antonio Brown, PIT WR

Notes: There's a temptation to make this a two-man tier as some concern exists with situations for Elliott (Will the Cowboys have a balanced offense?) and Johnson (Will he thrive as Cardinals transition?), but ultimately these are the main building blocks for any fantasy team. Order isn't locked and even less so in PPR.
 
Tier 2

6.  Alvin Kamara, NO RB
 
7.  DeAndre Hopkins, HOU WR
 
8.  Saquon Barkley, NYG RB
 
9.  Leonard Fournette, JAC RB
 
10.  Melvin Gordon, LAC RB
 
11.  Kareem Hunt, KC RB
 
12.  Julio Jones, ATL WR
 
13.  Odell Beckham Jr., NYG WR

Notes: Interesting dilemma starts here. Take the always needed running backs or grab one of the elite in a year in which there aren't many elite receivers?
 
Tier 3

14.  Dalvin Cook, MIN RB
 
15.  Michael Thomas, NO WR
 
16.  Keenan Allen, LAC WR
 
17.  Devonta Freeman, ATL RB
 
18.  A.J. Green, CIN WR
 
19.  Davante Adams, GB WR
 
20.  Rob Gronkowski, NE TE

Notes: These are the last running backs that can help owners desiring an RB1 sleep better at night. Cook dropped from Tier 2 to 3 because Minnesota's offensive line is a true MASH unit. ...The "Gronk" upside vs. injuy risk is, always, in play.
 
Tier 4

21.  Joe Mixon, CIN RB
 
22.  T.Y. Hilton, IND WR
 
23.  Mike Evans, TB WR
 
24.  Jerick McKinnon, SF RB
 
25.  Jordan Howard, CHI RB
 
26.  Christian McCaffrey, CAR RB
 
27.  Stefon Diggs, MIN WR
 
28.  Adam Thielen, MIN WR
 
29.  Doug Baldwin, SEA WR
 
30.  Tyreek Hill, KC WR
 
31.  Alex Collins, BAL RB
 
32.  Amari Cooper, OAK WR
 
33.  Travis Kelce, KC TE
 
34.  Derrick Henry, TEN RB
 
35.  Demaryius Thomas, DEN WR
 
36.  Lamar Miller, HOU RB
 
37.  Larry Fitzgerald, ARI WR
 
38.  Allen Robinson, CHI WR
 
39.  Aaron Rodgers, GB QB
 
40.  Kenyan Drake, MIA RB

Notes:  Fun group of running backs here for any owner who went receiver-receiver at the start. Mixon, Collins and Henry are particularly interesting, though all have some form of a stat-stealing pest in their respective backfields. ... Rodgers likely goes higher in most leagues. Considering the impressive QB depth this season, it's surely better to let someone else jump in while you fortify depth elsewhere. 
 
Tier 5

41.  Marvin Jones, DET WR
 
42.  Jay Ajayi, PHI RB
 
43.  JuJu Smith-Schuster, PIT WR
 
44.  Zach Ertz, PHI TE
 
45.  Royce Freeman, DEN RB
 
46.  LeSean McCoy, BUF RB
 
47.  Chris Hogan, NE WR
 
48.  Josh Gordon, CLE WR
 
49.  Golden Tate, DET WR
 
50.  Brandin Cooks, LAR WR
 
51.  Alshon Jeffery, PHI WR
 
52.  Mark Ingram, NO RB
 
53.  Tom Brady, NE QB
 
54.  Jarvis Landry, CLE WR
 
55.  Marshawn Lynch, OAK RB

Notes: Derrius Guice would have been the first rookie running back off the board after Saquon Barkley. Alas, that's not happening after his season-ending knee injury. Instead that honor goes to Freeman, who should pass Devontae Booker on the Broncos depth chart before long.
 
Tier 6

56.  Corey Davis, TEN WR
 
57.  Rex Burkhead, NE RB
 
58.  Rashaad Penny, SEA RB
 
59.  Ronald Jones II, TB RB
 
60.  Russell Wilson, SEA QB
 
61.  Dion Lewis, TEN RB
 
62.  Cam Newton, CAR QB
 
63.  Tevin Coleman, ATL RB
 
64.  Michael Crabtree, BAL WR
 
65.  Emmanuel Sanders, DEN WR
 
66.  Deshaun Watson, HOU QB
 
67.  Sammy Watkins, KC WR
 
68.  Robert Woods, LAR WR
 
69.  Marquise Goodwin, SF WR
 
70.  Randall Cobb, GB WR
 
71.  Robby Anderson, NYJ WR
 
72.  Sony Michel, NE RB
 
73.  Kenny Stills, MIA WR
 
74.  Pierre Garcon, SF WR
 
75.  Devin Funchess, CAR WR
 
76.  Greg Olsen, CAR TE
 
77.  Jamison Crowder, WAS WR
 
78.  Isaiah Crowell, NYJ RB
 
79.  Will Fuller, HOU WR
 
80.  Jimmy Graham, GB TE
 
81.  Kerryon Johnson, DET RB
 
82.  Cooper Kupp, LAR WR
 
Tier 7

83.  Jamaal Williams, GB RB
 
84.  Marlon Mack, IND RB
 
85.  Delanie Walker, TEN TE
 
86.  Drew Brees, NO QB
 
87.  Nelson Agholor, PHI WR
 
88.  Julian Edelman, NE WR
 
89.  Evan Engram, NYG TE
 
90.  Kyle Rudolph, MIN TE
 
91.  Paul Richardson, WAS WR
 
92.  Carson Wentz, PHI QB
 
93.  Carlos Hyde, CLE RB
 
94.  Andrew Luck, IND QB
 
Tier 8

95.  Tarik Cohen, CHI RB
 
96.  Kirk Cousins, MIN QB
 
97.  Kelvin Benjamin, BUF WR
 
98.  Chris Thompson, WAS RB
 
99.  Jordy Nelson, OAK WR
 
100.  Marqise Lee, JAC WR
 
101.  Ben Roethlisberger, PIT QB
 
102.  Devante Parker, MIA WR
 
103.  Jordan Reed, WAS TE
 
104.  Trey Burton, CHI TE
 
105.  Matthew Stafford, DET QB
 
106.  C.J. Anderson, CAR RB
 
107.  Sterling Shepard, NYG WR
 
108.  Kenny Golladay, DET WR
 
109.  Allen Hurns, DAL WR
 
110.  Rishard Matthews, TEN WR
 
111.  Duke Johnson, CLE RB
 
112.  Josh Doctson, WAS WR
 
113.  Philip Rivers, LAC QB
 
114.  Tyler Lockett, SEA WR
 
115.  Matt Ryan, ATL QB
 
116.  Mike Williams, LAC WR
 
117.  Devontae Booker, DEN RB
 
118.  Jack Doyle, IND TE
 
119.  Jimmy Garoppolo, SF QB
 
120.  Chris Carson, SEA RB
 
121.  D.J. Moore, CAR WR
 
122.  Patrick Mahomes, KC QB
 
123.  Giovani Bernard, CIN RB
 
124.  Anthony Miller, CHI WR
 
125.  Mohamed Sanu, ATL WR
 
126.  Ted Ginn, NO WR
 
127.  Matt Breida, SF RB
 
128.  George Kittle, SF TE
 
129.  David Njoku, CLE TE
 
130.  Cameron Meredith, NO WR
 
Tier 9

131.  Dez Bryant, FA WR
 
132.  Aaron Jones, GB RB
 
133.  Nick Chubb, CLE RB
 
134.  Chris Godwin, TB WR
 
135.  Tyrell Williams, LAC WR
 
136.  Ty Montgomery, GB RB
 
137.  Jared Goff, LAR QB
 
138.  DeSean Jackson, TB WR
 
139.  John Brown, BAL WR
 
140.  Alex Smith, WAS QB
 
141.  Michael Gallup, DAL WR
 
142.  Peyton Barber, TB RB
 
143.  Marcus Mariota, TEN QB
 
144.  Calvin Ridley, ATL WR
 
145.  James White, NE RB
 
146.  Keelan Cole, JAC WR
 
147.  Corey Clement, PHI RB
 
148.  Latavius Murray, MIN RB
 
149.  Mike Wallace, PHI WR
 
150.  O.J. Howard, TB TE
 
151.  Dak Prescott, DAL QB
 
152.  Bilal Powell, NYJ RB
 
153.  Martavis Bryant, OAK WR
 
154.  Quincy Enunwa, NYJ WR
 
155.  Nyheim Hines, IND RB
 
156.  Eric Ebron, IND TE
 
157.  Robert Kelley, WAS RB
 
158.  Tyler Eifert, CIN TE
 
159.  Charles Clay, BUF TE
 
160.  Austin Ekeler, LAC RB
 
161.  Ricky Seals-Jones, ARI TE
 
162.  Ryan Grant, IND WR
 
163.  Jordan Wilkins, IND RB
 
164.  Blake Bortles, JAC QB
 
165.  Samaje Perine, WAS RB
 
166.  Mitch Trubisky, CHI QB
 
167.  Theo Riddick, DET RB
 
168.  John Ross, CIN WR
 
169.  D'Onta Foreman, HOU RB
 
170.  Danny Amendola, MIA WR
 
171.  Cameron Brate, TB TE
 
172.  Doug Martin, OAK RB
 
173.  Vance McDonald, PIT TE
 
174.  Jermaine Kearse, NYJ WR
 
175.  Geronimo Allison, GB WR
 
176.  Chris Ivory, BUF RB
 
177.  Donte Moncrief, JAC WR
 
178.  Taywan Taylor, TEN WR
 
179.  Eli Manning, NYG QB
 
180.  Frank Gore, MIA RB
 
181.  LeGarrette Blount, DET RB
 
182.  Derek Carr, OAK QB
 
183.  Albert Wilson, MIA WR
 
184.  Austin Hooper, ATL TE
 
185.  Benjamin Watson, NO TE
 
186.  Austin Seferian-Jenkins, JAC TE
 
187.  Hayden Hurst, BAL TE
 
188.  Jacksonville Jaguars, JAC DST
 
189.  Courtland Sutton, DEN WR
 
190.  Christian Kirk, ARI WR
 
191.  Dante Pettis, SF WR
 
192.  Terrance Williams, DAL WR
 
193.  Travis Benjamin, LAC WR
 
194.  Jameis Winston, TB QB
 
195.  Mike Gesicki, MIA TE
 
196.  Spencer Ware, KC RB
 
197.  Andy Dalton, CIN QB
 
198.  Mark Andrews, BAL TE
 
199.  James Washington, PIT WR
 
200.  Greg Zuerlein, LAR