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What happens to Redskins offense if Sean McVay leaves?

What happens to Redskins offense if Sean McVay leaves?

For months rumors swirled that Redskins offensive coordinator Sean McVay would draw interest for head coaching opportunities.

Those rumors came true this offseason, as McVay has already interviewed with the Rams for their vacant head coach position and will talk Monday with the 49ers about their top job.

It appears the talks with Los Angeles went well and the team is digging deep into the 30-year-old's background for more information.

Of course, McVay has lived a football life. He began his coaching career with Tampa in 2008 at just 22 years old, landed with the Redskins in 2010, and took over at offensive coordinator in 2014. Redskins players have said they have 'no doubt' about McVay's ability to coach a team, and it seems the question is more when than if he gets a head job.

And while that's all great news for McVay, what does it mean for the Redskins?

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Washington's offense is the strength of the team, and one of the more effective units in the NFL. The team ranked 3rd in the NFL in yards gained and quarterback Kirk Cousins threw for more than 4,900 yards, both significant improvements from 2015.

Chris Thompson, a fourth-year running back that took advantage of his opportunities in the Redskins system, said that losing McVay would be tough but should not cause major changes as the offensive design comes from head coach Jay Gruden.

"As far as the offense goes if anybody’s worried, it’s Sean and Coach Gruden incorporating their ideas together. It would be big just because it might put a little bit more on Coach Gruden. He may be in a situation where he might have to go back to play calling again," Thompson said. "It’s something that Coach Gruden is used to."

Play calling will be one area that McVay's absence could have a big impact. In 2014, Gruden called the Redskins plays despite being a rookie head coach. That task, along with running the whole team, proved to be somewhat of a burden and in 2015 Gruden shared play calling duties with McVay and offensive line coach Bill Callahan. 

This past season, though Gruden, Callahan and QB Coach Matt Cavanugh had input, play calling was exclusively the domain of McVay. The young coordinator got the credit when things went well, and took the heat when the Redskins offense bogged down. At times last year, the Redskins had a bad habit of getting away from the running attack, and McVay owned that when the criticism inevitably came.

After a December loss to the Cardinals in Arizona that saw the Redskins run less than 20 times despite averaging more than 4-yards-per-carry, McVay took the blame.

"I definitely feel like I could’ve been more patient on some of those early down and distances where you get a little bit pass-heavy. And that’s something that as a decision-maker and as a coordinator, I have to do a better job," he said.

It's that level of honesty and accountability that likely appeals to NFL owners when they look at McVay as a head coaching candidate.

For the Redskins, McVay is undeniably an asset, but his departure should not set the offense back with Gruden still running the ship.

'It’s pretty much his offense, so he’ll be comfortable with it I’m sure," Thompson said. 

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Draft Trade Simulator: Are the Chargers desperate enough to make the Redskins move?

Draft Trade Simulator: Are the Chargers desperate enough to make the Redskins move?

The Redskins hold the No. 2 overall selection in the NFL Draft and there could be plenty of suitors for the pick. JP Finlay works through hypothetical draft day trades. 

As some buzz grows that Washington might look to trade down from the second overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, one team that could be interested in moving up would be the Los Angeles Chargers. 

Yes, Los Angeles, not San Diego, and that’s a big part of why this could actually happen. Once the Chargers left Ron Burgundy’s hometown to move up to Hollywood, they lost a ton of fans, and soon they will be playing football in a new stadium. A rookie quarterback with a national name could help sell a lot of tickets and convert new fans to the Lightning Bolts. 

That quarterback’s name? Tua Tagovailoa.

The Bengals will take the draft’s biggest star in Joe Burrow with the first overall pick, and after Burrow, no player will command more attention than the former Alabama record-breaker. Injury questions will trail Tua throughout the pre-draft process, and the lack of official visits and workouts could hinder his ability to make an impact of NFL decision makers. Still, Tagovailoa is an elite prospect decorated with an incredible career for the Crimson Tide that, if healthy, could transform an NFL team immediately.

So how could a trade between the Redskins and Chargers happen? Let's take a look.

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Parameters

In 2016 the Eagles made a massive trade to move from the eighth spot to the second spot so they could draft Carson Wentz. To make the move, the Eagles sent the Browns five total picks, including their first-rounder, third-rounder and fourth-rounder that year in addition to another first and second-rounder in subsequent years. In the transaction Cleveland sent back a fourth-rounder in 2017. 

This year the Chargers hold the sixth pick but their biggest competition to take a quarterback is Miami, the team with the fifth overall pick and a load of draft capital to make any move work. If the Chargers want to get ahead of the Dolphins, the package will need to be big, and perhaps similar to the deal the Eagles made in 2016 for Wentz.

The Chargers hold one pick in every round of the next two drafts, so they could work out a package of picks to move up if they want. Los Angeles could also try to package tight end Hunter Henry in a deal. He’s currently on the roster via the franchise tag, and the Redskins desperately need help at the tight end position. 

Outlook

Don’t count on it but don’t count it out either. The Chargers have Tyrod Taylor under contract for 2020 but no long-term answer at quarterback. 

It’s also possible Los Angeles decides to wait for a QB another season and just build the rest of the team for multiple reasons. The Coronavirus could change schedules dramatically, and the Chargers have a lot of talent on their roster. Another year of building the entire team could be the best path, besides a major draft trade could hurt the effort to build a long-term winner in LA. 

Here's the thing though, desperate times call for desperate measures. 

The Chargers ranked dead last in NFL attendance for the last three seasons. In 2019, the Chargers averaged about 32,000 fans per game, almost 20,000 fans fewer than the next closest team.

Los Angeles has to build its fanbase. Must. Tua could be the ticket to selling tickets. 

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Redskins great, Hall of Fame legend Bobby Mitchell dies

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Associated Press

Redskins great, Hall of Fame legend Bobby Mitchell dies

Bobby Mitchell, who became the first black player on the Redskins before going on to spend decades in the team's front office after his Hall of Fame playing career had ended, died on Sunday according to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He was 84.

“The entire Pro Football Hall of Fame family mourns the passing of Bobby Mitchell. The Game lost a true legend today. Bobby was an incredible player, a talented executive and a real gentleman to everyone with whom he worked or competed against. His wife Gwen and their entire family remain in our thoughts and prayers. The Hall of Fame will forever keep his legacy alive to serve as inspiration to future generations,” Hall of Fame President & CEO David Baker said in a statement. 

Mitchell was selected by the Cleveland Browns in the eighth round of the 1958 draft. He was traded to Washington in 1962 and by the time his 11-year playing career ended, he was third in NFL history with 14,078 total yards.

He earned four Pro Bowl nods. He started in Washington's front office immediately after his playing career ended, eventually rising up to be the team's assistant general manager. He was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1983. 

“I was extremely saddened to hear the news about the passing of the great Bobby Mitchell. Bobby was a Hall of Fame player and executive and represented the Washington Redskins organization with integrity for over 50 years. His passion for the game of football was unmatched by anyone I have ever met," Redskins team owner Dan Snyder said in a statement. 

"Not only was he one of the most influential individuals in franchise history, but he was also one of the greatest men I have ever known. He was a true class act and will be sorely missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Gwen and the entire Mitchell family during this time."