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Need to Know: Redskins best- and worst-case scenarios—Offense

Need to Know: Redskins best- and worst-case scenarios—Offense

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, May 12, 12 days before the Redskins start OTAs on May 24.


It’s been 131 days since the Redskins played a game. Their season opener against the Eagles at FedEx Field is in 121 days.

Days until:

—Redskins OTAs start (5/24) 12
—Training camp starts (7/27) 76
—Preseason opener @ Ravens (8/10) 90

Best- and worst-case scenarios--Offense

Here is a look at realistic best- and worst case scenarios for Redskins on offense:

QB Kirk Cousins

Best: 5,100 yards, 35 touchdowns, 10 interceptions, 8.2 yards/attempt

Worst: 4,500 years, 23 touchdowns, 15 interceptions, 7.5 yards/attempt

The Redskins didn’t draft a workhorse running back so they are likely to be a pass-first offense. That will mean plenty of pass attempts and chances to rack up yardage for Cousins. Actually, the lower end might be a better sign of team success because that could mean that the defense is playing better and the offense isn’t under the gun to score every possession.

WR Terrelle Pryor

Best: 80 receptions, 1,200 yards, 8 TD

Worst: 60 receptions, 850 yards, 4 TD

How quickly can Pryor get in sync with Cousins? And how much of a leap will he take in his second year as a full-time wide receiver? Higher numbers for Pryor may not be good news as it could mean that second-year receiver Josh Doctson is struggling.

WR Jamison Crowder

Best: 90 receptions, 1,050 yards, 9 TD

Worst: 70 receptions, 850 yards, 5 TD

Crowder’s stats improved from his first to his second years. If improves at the same pace he’ll hit the best case. If he levels off at his 2016 performance, that’s the worst case.  

TE Jordan Reed

Best: 100 receptions, 1,000 yards, 10 TD

Worst: 60 receptions, 650 yards, 3 TD

The major variable with Reed is health. The best case assumes that Reed will play in 14 games and is healthy enough to be at peak productivity in all of them. On the other end, he misses about half a dozen games and is hampered in a couple more.

RB Rob Kelley

Best: 1,100 yards, 10 TD

Worst: 550 yards, 3 TD

Does Kelley hold on to his spot as the lead dog at running back? Or does Samaje Perine substantially cut into his carries? It might come down to if Kelley can be the hot hand often enough.

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 hopes to return from injured reserve as soon as he's eligible to

Derrius Guice hopes to return from injured reserve as soon as he's eligible to

Derrius Guice tweeted out a photo early Tuesday afternoon of himself and Alex Smith stepping onto a Redskins' practice field in Ashburn. Then, later on, he indicated the date he's hoping to make his return from injured reserve.

It shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone that the energetic Guice wants to play as soon as he's eligible to.

When a fan asked the second-year pro on social media if he'd be back after the team's bye week, which is on Nov. 10, the running back replied with a "Yessir."

If he does in fact rejoin the Redskins then, his first appearance for the Burgundy and Gold would be a Week 11 matchup against the Jets. If they had a game in Week 10, he could be activated at that point, but they're off.

NFL rules stipulate that every franchise can bring two players off of I.R. after they've spent eight weeks on it. Guice suffered a knee injury in the season opener in Philadelphia and underwent meniscus surgery soon thereafter. It was an unfortunate obstacle for him especially after he missed all of 2018, but to his credit, he handled it well.

Considering No. 29's potential and the fact that Bill Callahan loves the running game, there's no doubt Washington would like to place him back on the roster when he's ready. Hopefully, he'll start practicing soon and get to a place where he's able to be relied upon. 

It's unlikely Guice's return will coincide with a Redskins playoff run, but it'll still be interesting to see if he can string together a healthy finish to the schedule. Between he, Terry McLaurin and Dwayne Haskins, there should be plenty of young talent to take in on offense in the second half of the 2019 campaign. 


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Bill Callahan might be an old-school running coach, but he knows he needs to adapt against 49ers

Bill Callahan might be an old-school running coach, but he knows he needs to adapt against 49ers

From the moment Bill Callahan took over as the Redskins interim head coach, he talked almost exclusively about establishing the run game in the offense. 

Last week in Miami his team did just that, running the ball 33 times for 145 yards. It was Washington's biggest output from the ground game this season, and by a wide margin. 

This week, however, the Redskins face a much stiffer challenge against San Francisco. The 49ers boast the second-best defense in the league, trailing only the Patriots, and Kyle Shanahan's team is giving up fewer than 90 rush yards-per0game. That's nearly 100 yards less than the Dolphins were giving up prior to last week's game against the Redskins. 

Last week, it made sense for Callahan to preach running the football. Miami was awful at defending it. This week, things look much different, and Redskins fans might be surprised to know Callahan looks willing to change his offensive scheme. 

"Every game is different," Callahan said in an interview with NBC Sports Washington.

"This game coming up may be different than last week. We may take certain shots on certain downs and distances, and change our tendencies as we go forward. That's always fluid."

Against the 0-4 Dolphins, the Redskins played a conservative offense that saw Case Keenum complete just 13 passes. He was able to connect with rookie wide receiver Terry McLaurin for two scores, but there were plenty of pass yards left on the field in Miami. The truth was Washington didn't need to do that much offensively to beat the awful Dolphins.

Against 5-0 San Francisco, the opposite is true. The Niners' offense ranks fifth in the league in yards-per-game and third in points-per-game. Shanahan's team plays great football on both sides, and the former Redskins offensive coordinator will very much want to show off his new squad on Sunday. 

Callahan seems quite aware of the circumstances for this game, and that could mean a much more aggressive Redskins offense. 

"I think that you are gameplan specific based on your opponent," the coach said. "Obviously, you want to take advantage of the things you can do. We will certainly focus in on that as we delve into the 49ers."

The Niners have won four out of five games by double digits, and two wins came by more than 20 points. This team is clicking on all cylinders right now. 

The Redskins have a serious task in front of them, and oddsmakers installed Washington as double-digit underdogs. The good news, even if minor, is Callahan looks like he understands the nature of his opponent and that he must adapt his team to best attack San Francisco.