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Need to Know: Fan questions—Aggressive D, Jabrill Peppers at 17?

Need to Know: Fan questions—Aggressive D, Jabrill Peppers at 17?

Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, April 11, 16 days before the April 27 NFL draft.


Days until:

—Offseason workouts begin (4/17) 6
—Redskins rookie camp (5/12) 31
—Redskins OTAs start (5/24) 43
—First Sunday of 2017 season (9/10) 152

Fan questions—

I’ve taken some fan questions recently that require a long form answer. This morning I’ll do some quick hitters.

I’m not sure I buy Peppers to the Redskins at No. 17; he seems to be a better value later in the first round. But I will say that “jack of all trades” in today’s NFL is a feature, not a bug. The NFL is moving towards players who can play multiple spots. With the no-huddle offenses in vogue, it helps to have a player who can line up in their safety spot, at nickel linebacker or cover the slot. It also helps in case of injuries or when the other team likes to spread things out. Peppers can be quite a weapon for a defensive coordinator who can figure out how to use him. And if he can play some snaps on offense, so much the better.

While some aspects of the offense will change, I don’t see the Redskins using the I formation as a primary way of lining up. Jay Gruden would much rather line up with three wide receivers and/or two tight ends than two running backs. That gives him more options. On the seven or so plays per game that they do want to use a fullback it likely will be Paul.

That is something that remains to be seen. They have four potential double-digit sack edge rushers as I discussed in this post yesterday so they certainly have the personnel up front to be aggressive. It will come down to how much confidence Greg Manusky has in the secondary’s ability to cover on an island. The confidence probably will be there in corners Josh Norman and Bashaud Breeland. Whether he has faith in safeties Su’a Cravens and D.J. Swearinger may be another matter.

I usually have done at least a couple of seven-round Redskins mock drafts by now but my first is coming in the next few days. But just taking a stab at it now, I’d go with yours with a few changes. I’d take one of your safeties and make him a running back. I’m not completely buying the Gruden love affair with Rob Kelley; it could be more of a “love the one you’re with” situation. Unless a wide receiver is way too good to pass up when they’re on the clock I’d say they take another offensive lineman, perhaps a tackle. Finally I think there is a very good chance they take a quarterback at some point although I’m not sure what position would be removed if that happens.  

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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Derrius Guice shares workout video amid reports swirling about his health

Derrius Guice shares workout video amid reports swirling about his health

Many Redskins' fans became increasingly worried over the weekend about the health of running back Derrius Guice after a report came out that he suffered a hamstring injury during his rehab process from an ACL injury he suffered last August.

The report questioned Guice's availability for the start of Redskins' training camp, which begins on July 25.

In response to the report, Guice tweeted: "I don’t listen to the noise. I know what’s going on with me." He has since deleted his Twitter account.

But Guice is still an active user on Snapchat, and took to the platform on Monday to share footage of himself working out. The second-year running back shared video taken of him performing a number of drills, many of which required him to change direction quickly and test his hamstring, as well as his knee.

Guice even captioned one of the videos "Hamstring who," with several eyes emojis attached to the caption. Based on his caption, Guice does not appear to seem concerned that this latest report will affect his status for the upcoming season.

Prior to his ACL injury last August, Guice showed plenty of promise during training camp and the preseason. 

At this point, Redskins fans just want Guice to be healthy and ready for Week 1 and showcase the talent that earned him an All-SEC honor at LSU.


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Cowboys' Ezekiel Elliott has said privately he will hold out from training camp, per report

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Cowboys' Ezekiel Elliott has said privately he will hold out from training camp, per report

Since entering the NFL in 2016, Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott has established himself as one of the elite rushers in the NFL.

Now, he wants to be paid like it.

Elliott, who has two years remaining on his rookie deal, has privately said he plans on holding out from training camp until he receives a new deal, per ProFootballTalk.

Slated to make just $3.5 million in 2019, Elliott is one of the most underpaid players in all of football. He's set to make $9.09 million in 2020, the final year of his rookie deal.

Dallas has put off extension talks with Elliott simply because he's still under contract for two more seasons, per the report.

Quarterback Dak Prescott and wide receiver Amari Cooper are both free agents after the season, and the Cowboys would like to keep both at all costs, ProFootballTalk said. Additionally, Dallas just signed defensive end Demarcus Lawrence to a five-year, $105 million contract extension this offseason.

Should he not receive a contract extension, Elliott could face a situation similar to what Demarco Murray had with the Cowboys in 2014. Murray set a franchise record for most rushing yards in a season, yet Dallas still chose to let him walk in free agency.

Elliott's not the only star running back threatening to holdout this offseason. Los Angeles Chargers' Melvin Gordon has publicly stated he will skip training camp until he gets a new deal and is not afraid to miss regular-season games, similar to what Le'Veon Bell did last year with the Pittsburgh Steelers. 

Since entering the NFL in 2016, Elliott has led the NFL in rushing twice. His 4,048 total rushing yards over the past three seasons are the most in the NFL, and he has over 600 more rushing yards than Los Angeles Rams' Todd Gurley, the next most rushing yards over that span.

Whether he actually holds out or whether the Cowboys turn their attention to extending their star running back will be seen in the coming weeks.