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Where are we? The Redskins after five games

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Where are we? The Redskins after five games

Here is how the Redskins stand after five games:

Record: 2-3
vs. NFC East: 0-0
vs. NFC: 2-2
Home: 0-2
Away: 2-1

Opposition cumulative record: 13-11
Cumulative of teams beaten: 2-7
Cumulative of teams lost to: 11-4

Offensive MVP (season to date): Robert Griffin III showed his value by getting knocked out of the game. After he left with about six minutes to play in the third quarter, Kirk Cousins and the Redskins did manage to take advantage of broken coverage and get a touchdown on a 77-yard pass to Santana Moss. In four other possessions, however, with the game on the line they managed just 33 yards. Honorable mention: Alfred Morris, Trent Williams

Defensive MVP: After coming close to getting interceptions a few times this year, Ryan Kerrigan finally held on to one and he took it to the house, providing the Redskins with their only points during the first 39 minutes of play. Honorable Mention: Stephen Bowen, Barry Cofield

Top three storylines:

RG3s healthGriffin has been cleared to practice on Wednesday; beyond that remains to be seen. It will be a day-to-day process, with approval needed each afternoon to be able to participate the next day. As of right now he seems to be doing fine but that could change at any moment.

Changing feetThe revolving door at the kicker position cranks back up again as Billy Cundiff is out, Kai Forbath is in. They couldnt keep Cundiff around after he missed two 31-yard field goal attempts and another one from 41 in the last two games. But they are rolling the dicethe game Sunday will be Forbaths NFL debut.

Fourth quarter woesThe Redskins have led four of their five games going into the fourth quarter and they were tied in the other one. But they are 2-3 because they have been outscored 63-27 in the fourth quarter. Is it scheme? Conditioning? Finding a way to win?

Next three games

Sunday vs. VikingsMinnesota is a surprising 4-1, tied for first in the NFC North

Oct. 21 @ GiantsGiants are 3-2, tied for first in the NFC East

Oct. 28 @ SteelersPittsburgh is 2-2, in third place in AFC North

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After releasing Martez Carter the Redskins are thin at running back

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Associated Press

After releasing Martez Carter the Redskins are thin at running back

The Redskins are very thin at running back right now. 

Today at practice the Redskins had three running backs on the field. Rob Kelley and Kapri Bibbs are fully healthy while Chris Thompson is limited as he recovers from a broken leg he suffered last November. 

Injuries have hit the depth at running back. The most recent casualty was Martez Carter, who was waived with an injury designation. 

The move was surprising since Carter had some good runs against the Jets during their preseason game on Thursday and he did not appear to be injured during the game. 

Coach Jay Gruden did not offer any more details as to what the injury to Carter was, only that he is no longer with the team. 

Also sidelined with lower leg injuries are Samaje Perine and Byron Marshall. According to media reports, Perine will be out one week and Marshall for two to four. Gruden would not confirm the timelines, saying only that they are undergoing treatment and the timetable for their returns in unknown. 

The Redskins will bring in some running backs to try out on Sunday. They will need at least one and probably two in order to get through the upcoming preseason game against the Broncos on Friday. 

In other personnel moves, the Redskins waived linebacker Jeff Knox and defensive end Jalen Wilkerson and signed offensive tackle Kendall Calhoun, defensive back Darius Hillary, and wide receiver Allenzae Staggers. 

More Redskins news

-Redskins vs Jets: Must-see photos from the game
-AnalysisFive Redskins-Jets observations

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter  @TandlerNBCS and on Instagram @RichTandler

 

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RB roster battle is fun to watch, but injuries will force tough decisions

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USA Today Sports

RB roster battle is fun to watch, but injuries will force tough decisions

Too much attention gets paid to roster construction during training camp. Projecting the 53-man roster has become its own August cottage industry, much like Bracketology flourishes in March.

The truth of the matter is regardless of projections, more than anything else, injuries dictate what players ultimately land on the Week 1 roster. 

Right now, that is apparent with the Redskins' running back position. Derrius Guice headlined the group after Washington grabbed him in the second round of April's NFL Draft. After injuring his knee in the first preseason game, however, Guice won't play in 2018. 

That means the other five guys battling for a spot now move up in the pecking order. Rob Kelley and Chris Thompson will make the team, even though Thompson is yet to play in the preseason and is still battling back from a broken leg last November. 

Samaje Perine, Byron Marshall, and Kapri Bibbs played with the 'Skins last season and were locked in a tense battle for spots. Then, Perine and Marshall got hurt Thursday night. Perine is expected to miss a week, while Marshall could miss up to four weeks. 

Can both Perine and Marshall still make the Redskins 53-man roster? 

Of course. 

Is that a certainty? Definitely not. 

Bibbs gets a major opportunity now, and he has looked good so far in camp and preseason games. Additionally, for Bibbs, it often gets lost that he actually played well in Washington last season. In three games he had more than 200 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown. 

If Marshall truly needs a month to get his lower leg injury settled, that won't be until after the deadline to trim rosters. The Redskins could move him to the injured reserve list before then, but that would mean Marshall would not be eligible to play for the Burgundy and Gold until Week 7. Also, the team only gets two moves off of IR for the season. Would they want to use one on their fourth running back?

Perine's injury situation seems less severe, and barring a setback or further injury, he will be on the roster. 

That means Thompson, Kelley, Perine, and Bibbs. Maybe Marshall too, but that will be determined by his rehab schedule. 

Martez Carter made impressive runs against the Jets, and while it seems easy to dismiss his roster candidacy, remember Rob Kelley was an undrafted free agent out of a small Louisiana school just a few years ago.

Complicating matters is the reality that Washington's front office is absolutely going to be watching what other NFL teams do at roster cut time. Other running backs could emerge, especially from teams like Detroit that already have a crowded running back room and added more players via the draft. 

Coaches like to say competition on the field is what makes roster decisions. And yes, that's a big part of it. The violent nature of the NFL, the ultimate Next Man Up league, plays a huge factor as well. 

Trimming a roster because of injuries doesn't mean there aren't mistakes made. It sure looks like Washington screwed up last year by cutting QB Nate Sudfeld, even though the team felt compelled to keep extra offensive linemen. 

It might be trite, but the NFL is a long, grueling season. The Redskins know that. The team lost more players to injury than any other NFL squad last season. 

So when looking at 53-man roster projections, know there are two more preseason games left, and sad but likely, more injuries to come. 

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