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Need to Know: 11 predictions for the 2017 Redskins offense

Need to Know: 11 predictions for the 2017 Redskins offense

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, July 14, 13 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp in Richmond on July 27.


The Redskins last played a game 194 days ago; they will open the 2017 season against the Eagles at FedEx Field in 58 days.

Days until:

—Franchise tag contract deadline (7/17) 3
—Preseason opener @ Ravens (8/10) 27
—Roster cut to 53 (9/2) 50

11 predictions for the Redskins’ offense

Yesterday I did one prediction for each of the Redskins’ 11 anticipated starters on defense. Now I do the same for the offense, with the same caveat that not all of the predictions are bold.

OT Trent Williams—He will make his sixth straight Pro Bowl but he will still fall short of All-Pro honors because he is not a Dallas Cowboy.

OT Morgan Moses—Fresh off his contract extension, Moses will be one of the two or three best right tackles in the game but he won’t make the Pro Bowl because they only select left tackles for that.

G Brandon Scherff—He will play every snap but one that he will miss for some random reason not related to injury or his play on the field.

G Shawn Lauvao—I hate to predict an injury for anyone but I’ll take the under on 10.5 games played for him this year.

C Spencer Long—For Long, another year of 100 percent accurate shotgun snaps.

WR Josh Doctson—This is perhaps the boldest prediction in this post—Doctson will catch 10 touchdown passes. He will be that good a red zone target.

WR Terrelle Pryor—Last year he got over 1,000 yards receiving with the disadvantage of playing with bad quarterbacks in Cleveland but the advantage of there being no other viable targets on the team. This year he’ll have a much better quarterback but Kirk Cousins will have plenty of guys to throw to. I’ll take under 1,000 yards but not by much.

WR Jamison Crowder—Crowder will post solid numbers across the board. My specific prediction is that he will score at least two touchdowns that don’t come on pass receptions (punt return, run from scrimmage, fumble recovery, etc.).

TE Jordan Reed—So, if Pryor doesn’t get 1,000 yards will Reed? If he plays in 13 games or more, yes. I don’t think he does but he still makes the Pro Bowl again.

RB Rob Kelley—After writing a couple of days ago that he could be as good a runner as David Johnson I suppose I need to come up with something bold here. But I can’t honestly say that he will match or top the 1,200 yards that Johnson racked up in 2016 because both Samaje Perine and Chris Thompson are going to get some carries. Still, I’ll put Kelley down for 1,050 yards and eight touchdowns.

QB Kirk Cousins—Up from last year: Completion percentage (67.0 in 2016), touchdown passes, (25), interceptions (12). Down from last year: Pass attempts (606), completions (406), passer rating (97.1).

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Why did Redskins choose Byron Marshall over Kapri Bibbs? Jay Gruden reveals his answer

Why did Redskins choose Byron Marshall over Kapri Bibbs? Jay Gruden reveals his answer

The Washington Redskins released running back Kapri Bibbs on Saturday, and in turn, made a decision to stick with Byron Marshall at the position instead.

The move leaves Washington with four backs on the roster: Adrian Peterson, Chris Thompson, Samaje Perine and Byron Marshall. Green Bay moved quick to claim Bibbs off waivers, so the Redskins will not be able to sneak him back to their practice squad. 

Asked about the decision to release Bibbs, Washington head coach Jay Gruden explained the situation as he sees it (quotes via Redskins Talk podcast):

You know Bibbs is a good player. I didn’t release him because he’s a poor player. Perine right now is Adrian Peterson’s backup. That’s the way it is. We dress one 1st/2nd-down back throughout the game and that’s Adrian. Chris is our 3rd-down back and obviously 2nd-and-long get back on track back. The next guy I like to have is a backup to both of them kind of, and that’s Bibbs and Marshall. And Marshall, to me in preseason, showed a lot of flash, a lot of speed, he’s a little bit better on special teams although he missed the tackle the other day. 

There's a lot to take in, and some fans take exception to Perine maintaining his roster spot. Listening to Gruden and others at Redskins Park, that decision does not sound at all negotiable.

So the real competition was Bibbs against Marshall. 

"I decided Marshall’s skill set [is] something very intriguing," Gruden said. 

The numbers don't really back up that assertion, but a lot of that is because Marshall hasn't been able to stay on the field. 


In parts of the last two seasons, Bibbs has been much more productive than Marshall, in large part because of durability. 

The Redskins signed Marshall off the Eagles practice squad in November 2017. He dressed in four games, rushing nine times for 32 yards and adding six catches for 36 yards, before a hamstring injury landed Marshall on the injured reserve, ending his season. 

With Marshall done, the team then signed Bibbs in December from the Denver practice squad. In three games, he piled up more than 200 total yards and a touchdown. 

Fast forward to training camp 2018, and it was clear Marshall was ahead of Bibbs on the depth chart. Marshall looked good too in the early going, before a knee injury landed him on the injured reserve list to start the season.

That created more opportunity for Bibbs, and he played well, especially for a long stretch while Thompson missed time with a rib injury. 

In 10 games this season, Bibbs rushed 20 times for 101 yards and three TDs. He also added another 13 catches for 102 yards and another TD. That's good for a 6.1 yards-per-touch average. 

The Redskins used one of their two injured reserve return designations on Marshall, and his first game back came against Houston in Week 10. In that game he had two carries for five yards, and more infamously, Marshall was the running back on the play when Alex Smith suffered a season-ending broken leg.

In four games since he's returned, Marshall has four catches for 30 yards and three carries for nine yards. He also returned two kickoffs in Jacksonville, averaging 15 yards-per-return. 

The stats don't really matter much now, as Marshall is on the team and Bibbs is in Green Bay.

Gruden picked the guy he believes has the higher upside, and if he can stay healthy, maybe Marshall will prove his coach right. 



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Jay Gruden admits Redskins should have activated Simmie Cobbs earlier

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Jay Gruden admits Redskins should have activated Simmie Cobbs earlier

Last week, the Redskins lost practice squad wide receiver Simmie Cobbs to the Saints even though Washington offered the undrafted rookie a deal similar to New Orleans. 

On Monday, 'Skins head coach Jay Gruden admitted that losing Cobbs stings a bit for the franchise. 

"It was tough because we had him in the building and he was progressing very well," Gruden said Monday on the Redskins Talk podcast.

"In hindsight, I probably should have activated him sooner, to be honest with you."

Credit Gruden for the honesty, and while Cobbs is an intriguing prospect, don't confuse him with Larry Fitzgerald quite yet.

It's possible he doesn't make the active roster this season for New Orleans, but at 6-foot-3 and with good hands, he is the kind of player that turns heads. 

It's easy to criticize the Redskins for rolling with low potential players on the wide receiver depth chart - veterans like Brian Quick and Michael Floyd - instead of giving the rookie a shot. It's also important to recognize that the Burgundy and Gold have been fielding a makeshift offensive line for weeks and juggling a number of other injuries, leaving the roster structure a bit of a mess. 

Even without Cobbs, Gruden pointed out the Redskins still have a number of young, intriguing WR prospects for 2019: Cam Sims, Trey Quinn, Robert Davis and Darvin Kidsy. Sims, Quinn and Davis are all on the injured reserve list while Kidsy is on the practice squad. 

The particular tough point with Cobbs is that the Redskins had an empty roster spot before their game against the Eagles. Gruden perhaps acknowledged that mistake, or even if the right time was at a different juncture, the coach didn't like losing the player.