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Need to Know: Redskins end-of-season player one-liners, offensive edition

Need to Know: Redskins end-of-season player one-liners, offensive edition

Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, January 3, 114 days before the NFL draft.

Timeline

Days until: NFL free agency starts 65; NFL draft 114; First Sunday of 2017 season 250

End-of-season one-liners for each player, offense

QB Kirk Cousins—The chances he will be back on either the franchise tag or with a long-term deal are at least 80 percent, maybe higher.

QB Colt McCoy—He is under contract for 2017 and in the unlikely event that Cousins is not back he could be the starter, at least to start the season.

QB Nate Sudfeld—He was a “gamer” in preseason but he will have to learn to perform better in practice if he is ever going to see the field in the regular season.

RB Rob Kelley—Jay Gruden said he had a “great, great year” but I’m not so sure that applies to a back who averaged 4.2 yards per carry and had one 100-yard game.

RB Chris Thompson—The pending restricted free agent played all 16 games for the first time in his career.

RB Matt Jones—He averaged almost half a yard per carry more than Kelley, who replaced him as the starter in midseason, and had two 100-yard games to Kelley’s one; the ball security issues sunk his season.

RB Mack Brown—No idea how his career will unfold but he’ll always have that 61-yard TD run in Chicago to show his grandkids even if he doesn’t do anything else.

TE Jordan Reed—He would easily be the team’s best offensive player if he could play 16 games a year.

TE Vernon Davis—The veteran says that he would like to return and play six more years; the money will talk on the former and his nutritionist, chiropractor, and others will have to enable him to play to the age of 38.

TE Derrick Carrier—After a lost season spent trying to fully recover from his December 2015 knee injury, Carrier is under contract for one more year and likely will be back to compete for a roster spot in 2017.

WR DeSean Jackson—The conventional wisdom is that he will be gone as a free agent but the conventional wisdom doesn’t always apply to the way Scot McCloughan operates.

WR Pierre Garçon—Most think he will end up re-signing but see the above about the conventional wisdom.

WR Jamison Crowder—A slow finish (12 receptions for 122 yards in the last five games) turned what could have been an excellent season into a very good one.

WR Maurice Harris—He didn’t have a big rookie year but with a full offseason to work out and prepare he could have somemore impact in 2017.

WR Ryan Grant—In the last three games of the season, Harris played more snaps than Grant (53-37) an indication that Harris could move ahead of him on the 2017 depth chart.

OT Trent Williams—It will be interesting to see if his four-game suspension will cost him the All-Pro honors he deserves.

G Shawn Lauvao—We will see if the organization tries to replace arguably the weakest link on the offensive line.

C Spencer Long—After he made a good transition from guard the Redskins might look to lock him up with a contract extension this offseason.

G Brandon Scherff—He allowed just one sack this year and was rewarded with a Pro Bowl spot.

OT Morgan Moses—Williams’ suspension forced Moses to play through a pretty severe ankle sprain; Ty Nsekhe, the only reliable substitute tackle had to fill in for Williams.

OT Ty Nsekhe—He’s a restricted free agent and it will be interesting to see what kind of deal he ends up with.

C John Sullivan—He did a reasonably good job filling in for Long when he was out injured but may look for a starting job somewhere in 2017.

C/G Kory Lichtensteiger—After getting activated in Week 14 Lichtensteiger, who began the season as the starting center, didn’t play a snap.

OT Vinston Painter—He could be back next year to compete for a backup role.

G Arie Kouandjio—After struggling in one start and some spot work he did an acceptable job later in the year in his start against the Eagles.

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Vernon Davis pulls off memorable proposal in Ocean City

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USA Today Sports Images

Vernon Davis pulls off memorable proposal in Ocean City

Vernon Davis has long been a fan favorite in the D.C. area since his University of Maryland days. The 34-year-old is almost always well-dressed and respectful to the media. 

More recently, he has been outspoken about his interest in acting after his football career. A true renaissance man who just so happens to be a force in the National Football League. 

In April, NBC Sports Washington ran into Davis at the Team USA Awards where he was serving as guest speaker. 

He took his smooth nature to a whole new level Tuesday while vacationing in Ocean City, Md. with his girlfriend Kayla. 

Dressed in all white on the beach, Davis proposed in an epic way. 

The best motivation I ever had. #shesmyrock

A post shared by Vernon Davis (@vernondavis85) on

Check out the whole video produced below. We won't spoil it for you, but there were skydivers involved. Take a look: 

Davis will suit up for his third season with the Redskins when training camp opens July 26 in Richmond. 

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Redskins 2018 position outlook: Inside linebacker

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Bob Youngentob for NBC Sports Washington

Redskins 2018 position outlook: Inside linebacker

Redskins Training camp opens next week, and we have a break here, giving us time to put the depth chart under the microscope.

Between now and the start of camp, we will look at every position, compare the group to the rest of the NFL, see if the position has been upgraded or downgraded from last year, and take out the crystal ball to see what might unfold.

Inside linebackers

Additions: Shaun Dion Hamilton (drafted in the fifth round)

Departures: Will Compton (free agent)

Starters: Zach Brown, Mason Foster

Other roster locks: Josh Harvey-Clemons

On the bubble: Hamilton, Zach Vigil, Martrell Spaight

How the inside linebackers compare

To the rest of the NFL: This is a difficult comparison to make since only about half of the teams use the 3-4 with two inside linebackers and there are many variations when they go out of their base defense. Brown certainly is in the upper tier of players at his position. Foster’s skill set may not be coveted by many teams around the league, but he is a perfect fit in the Redskins’ defense in many ways. The player who could differentiate this group from others around the league is Harvey-Clemons. If he turns into a top-notch nickel LB the inside linebackers will be a great asset. 

To the 2017 Redskins:  This is about health. In 2017, Foster missed 11 games, Brown was hampered by a variety of injuries before sitting out the last three games. Compton was the top backup to both players and he went to injured reserve after just three starts. They did re-sign Vigil, who had spent training camp with the team, and he played pretty well near the end of the season. If the front-line players can stay on the field for most of the season this should be a much better group than the one that was partially responsible for the league’s 32nd-ranked rushing defense. 

2018 Inside linebacker outlook

Biggest upside: The 2017 season was supposed to be a redshirt year for Harvey-Clemons as he transitions from college safety to NFL linebacker. He played a lot in the base defense during the offseason practices and that indicates that they are considering him for a bigger role beyond just playing nickel. You have to wonder how his size (6-4, 230) will affect his ability to get off of blocks. 

Most to prove: Spaight was a fifth-round pick in 2015 and he has yet to establish a regular role in the defense. It was telling that when they needed someone to start in the latter part of last year they brought back and started Vigil and mostly kept Spaight is going into the last year of his contract, but it would not be surprising to see Vigil beat him out for the last roster spot.  

Rookie watch: The Redskins traded up in the sixth round to get Hamilton. It wasn’t a blockbuster deal but the fact that they thought enough of him to move up says something. Gruden has said that he thinks Hamilton could be a starter at some point. He was one of the leaders on a strong Alabama defense before injuries struck. Hamilton is not going to start this year barring multiple injuries, but he should develop a role as the season goes on and be ready to compete in 2019.

Bottom line: The Redskins have not invested much in terms of free agent dollars or draft capital in the inside linebacker position in recent seasons. That changed somewhat this offseason as they made sure to spend to retain Brown and Foster. Neither commanded a huge contract but they did make a commitment and that is important. Last year Brown gave the defense a sideline-to-sideline dimension it hasn’t had in quite some time and retaining him was critical. Inside linebacker may not be a major strength for the defense this year but it should be able to get the job done. 

2018 Redskins position outlook series