Over the next few weeks, Insiders Tarik El-Bashir and Rich Tandler will take a position-by-position look at the Redskins’ depth chart now that the team’s offseason program has concluded.
Some battles are straightforward. Others could get complicated. This much, however, cannot be debated: A player is not on the 53-man roster until its finalized Sept. 5.
So who’s in? And who’s in jeopardy? Up today …
Position: Right tackle
On the roster: Brandon Scherff, Tom Compton, Takoby Cofield, Ty Nsekhe, Bryce Quigley
Likely to make the 53: Scherff, Compton
Comment: The fifth overall pick in the draft was plugged in at right tackle from the start and the Redskins hope that he doesn’t come out before they move to a new stadium sometime in the latter half of the 2020’s.
He was a left tackle at Iowa so there are two learning curves for him to deal with. The move from one tackle to the other side has been described like learning to eat with your left hand. It can be done but while you’re learning you might poke yourself in the eye with a fork a few times. The other challenge, if course, is the adjustment to the NFL. That change has been compared to the move from high school to college ball but more difficult by an exponential factor.
Jay Gruden has a very realistic view of the process and those who think that Scherff will come in and dominate immediately may want to reconsider.
“We moved him over to right tackle and he had some struggles, but the thing about Brandon that I’ve noticed already is he takes coaching extremely well,” said Gruden. “He learns. If he has a mistake, he’s going to try to fix it and that’s important for an offensive lineman to study the game and learn from your mistakes. Because you’re going to get beat a couple times by some top-level pass rushers. You might lose a block on a running scheme or what have you.”
Compton, a sixth-round pick in 2012, started the last nine games of the season at right tackle in 2014 after beating out Tyler Polumbus. He was OK run blocking but not so good pass blocking (six sacks allowed in just over half a season). It is likely that he will make the 53-man roster but it is possible that Morgan Moses and Willie Smith (we’ll look at them with the left tackles) stick as the reserve tackles.
Battling for a job: Cofield, Nsekhe, Quigley
Comment: It was reported that Cofield received the maximum signing bonus an undrafted free agent can get so the organization sees some potential there. He is a long shot to make the 53-man roster but they probably have him penciled in for a spot on the practice squad if he shows well in training camp and in preseason games.
Nsekhe and Quigley also are eligible for the practice squad. However, it seems unlikely that Nsekhe will be a part of it. He will turn 30 early in the season and practice squad spots are usually reserved for younger players.
Redskins position previews 2015: