Here is what you need to know on this Monday, June 12, one day before the Washington Redskins start their mandatory minicamp on June 13.
—Franchise tag contract deadline (7/15) 33
—Training camp starts (7/27) 45
—Preseason opener @ Ravens (8/10) 59
—Season opener Eagles @ Redskins (9/10) 90
Hot topics as Redskins OTAs end
—Will Vernon Davis hit the wall? Father Time is undefeated and Davis goes into the 2017 season at the age of 33. Will his production take a tumble from what he posted in 2016? He gained 583 yards receiving last year. Since the NFL merger only nine tight ends have had seasons with 580 or more receiving yards at age 33 or older. I think that he has a few years left in the tank. If he falls below what he produced last year it likely will be due more to a healthier Jordan Reed costing him opportunities than due to his age.
—The drop in Kirk Cousins’ touchdown passes from 2015 to last year was big, to the point of being alarming. Last season, he threw 63 more passes than he did the previous year but he had four fewer touchdown passes, dropping his touchdown percentage from 5.3 to 4.1. The drop was all about the red zone. Cousins actually threw more TD passes from 20 yards or more in 2016 (11) than in 2015 (7). But on plays inside the opponents’ 20 he threw 22 TD passes two years ago and just 14 last year.
—Also alarming was the decline in Rob Kelley’s rushing production. If you project his output in his first five games as the starter (Bengals game through Cardinals) over 16 games you have a rusher who gains over 1,300 yards with 4.4 yards per carry and 13 touchdowns. In the last four games (Eagles through Giants) his 16-game pace was 720 yards with a 3.2 average per carry and 8 touchdowns. The earlier production could have him in the Pro Bowl, the latter set of numbers is that of a below-average starter. It wasn’t all Kelley’s fault—in particular, he had no running room at all against the Panthers. But if things start off slowly this season it’s going to be Kelley, not the offensive line, going to the bench.
—Does it seem like forever since the Redskins have been able consistently stop the opposing quarterback? Well, the numbers back up that feeling. Since 2010, opposing passers have put up a passer rating of 93.4 against Washington. That is 31st in the NFL in that time span. Only the Saints have been worse.
Tandler on Twitter
So, they got this franchise tag deal done more than a month prior to July 15. Didn’t need deadline to do this deal. https://t.co/hbzgsLz7JG— Rich Tandler (@TandlerNBCS) June 11, 2017
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