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Need to Know: How many wins for the 2017 Redskins?

Need to Know: How many wins for the 2017 Redskins?

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, May 5, 19 days before the Redskins start OTAs on May 24.

Timeline

It’s been 124 days since the Redskins played a game. Their season opener against the Eagles at FedEx Field is in 128 days.

Days until:

—Redskins rookie camp (5/12) 7
—Redskins OTAs start (5/24) 19
—Training camp starts (7/27) 83

How many wins for the 2017 Redskins?

Veteran free agency is just about done, the draft is over, and the first wave of undrafted free agents has been signed. Almost all the players who are going to be on the Week 1 roster are in the building. It’s time to break out the $100 in imaginary and bet on what the Redskins’ 2017 win total will be.

0-6 wins, $10—This is double-digit loss territory. Barring a catastrophic string of injuries, I don’t see this team falling off that badly, even with a moderately tough schedule.

7-8 wins, $30—The most recent over-under for wins I saw from Vegas was 7.5, so this is in that territory. They probably have seven wins baked in. They should split the six games in the division and be favorites against the 49ers, both Los Angeles teams, and the Vikings at home.

9-10 wins, $40—This is where the Redskins can get to if their red-zone offense and third-down defense improve to somewhere around average in the league. They would need to win some tough but winnable home games like the ones against the Raiders and Broncos and perhaps pull out a win in New Orleans  

11+ wins, $20—This is not an insignificant bet on a number of wins that could take the division and put the Redskins in contention for a bye. They would need to have a good run of luck, from good health on their end and some key injuries popping up for the stronger opponents on their schedule to an occasional fortuitous bounce of the ball. I’m fairly bullish on this team but they aren’t at the level to get there without a serious help from the football gods.

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.

Tandler on Twitter

Reacting to the news that the Redskins had signed Kansas safety Fish Smithson as a undrafted free agent:

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Josh Norman wants to play 'early Santa,' will give away Redskins tickets

Josh Norman wants to play 'early Santa,' will give away Redskins tickets

Josh Norman caused quite a stir with his comments Sunday about the atmosphere at FedEx Field, and the Redskins cornerback made it clear he plans to do his part in making sure the stadium is packed for Sunday's game against the Texans. 

Norman told reporters Thursday he's going to be giving away "40 or 50" free tickets for the Houston game, online and perhaps even in person.

"Yes, I will be giving out free tickets," he said. "I'll be doing it on my socials as well, I think I'll probably post tonight or something about it."

"Who knows, you may see me coming out and being an early Santa somewhere in the mall or something, just handing out tickets."

And if you are one of the lucky fans who gets a ticket from "Santa Norman," he has specific instructions on how you should behave at Sunday's game:

"Whoever get(s) them, we want them loud and just obnoxious. Just really obnoxious."

Norman joins several Redskins players who have promised to give away tickets to the Texans game.

It may be November, but the Christmas spirit is alive and well at Redskins Park. 

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A Madden ratings performance adjustor explains what goes into the job that everyone's jealous of

A Madden ratings performance adjustor explains what goes into the job that everyone's jealous of

Even on a field filled with NFL players, experienced coaches and a few celebrities, Clint Oldenburg stood out. 

It wasn’t because of his stature or that he used to play pro football, either.

It was due to his jacket.

A jacket, which led to a photo, which led to a tweet, which led to unexpected Internet fame, all thanks to the four words written on Oldenburg’s back: “Madden Ratings Performance Adjustor.”

Oldenburg was spending Week 9 at FedEx Field, sent by EA Sports to get more information on Adrian Peterson at that afternoon’s Redskins-Falcons game. The future Hall of Famer is in the middle of a comeback season, so Oldenburg was charged with checking in on him.

4.5 million Twitter impressions later, Oldenburg now knows that countless people are supremely jealous of his weekend vocation.

"I wasn’t really engaging on my cell phone during the game, and then when I was catching my cab to the airport after the game I looked at it and said, ‘Holy crap,’” he said in a recent phone interview.

"I was in shock as to what was happening.”

A fifth-round pick of the Patriots in 2007, Oldenburg also had brief stints with the Jets and a few others, including the Redskins. These days, he spends Monday-Friday working to make Madden’s gameplay better.

But he’s also a part of the Ratings Adjustor team, a small group of evaluators who travel to stadiums, observe players and submit their notes to a fellow employee. That primary analyst takes their notes into account and then has the final say on every player’s precious overall rating, which can fluctuate with each Madden update. 

Now, you may find the idea of sending someone to the site of a matchup to do this gig a bit preposterous. But according to Oldenburg, being there in-person does make a major difference.

"The benefits of the sideline really are for pregame,” he explained. “Just seeing how guys are working in pregame, getting a close-up view of their actual athletic skills, their footwork.”

Oldenburg also likes the “better perspective” he gets once the action kicks off. For example, while focusing on Peterson during the Burgundy and Gold’s loss to Atlanta, he felt like No. 26 missed some cutback lanes, something Oldenburg always finds himself paying attention to thanks to his days battling along the line.

Much like the thousands of social media users who shared various reactions about his job, players take an interest in him as well.

While in Landover, kicker Dustin Hopkins found Oldenburg on the sideline and passed along a request: That day, the team was planning on kicking off short as opposed to through the end zone, so Hopkins wanted to make sure his kick power wouldn't be decreased. 

"They wanna come talk about what we’re doing,” Oldenburg said about the athletes he’s tasked with grading. "Information like that is always valuable."

After his playing career wrapped up, Oldenburg jumped into an internship working on the video game that he loved growing up. “Everything took off” after that 10-week program, and he’s been enjoying it ever since.

"I always had to scratch and claw for everything I got,” he said near the end of the call. "I wanted to find a career that I knew I’d be happy doing.”

In the end, he landed in a career that makes him happy. And as one viral tweet showed, plenty of others would be happy in his role too. 

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