Every family has one. A dysfunctional, wayward child, uncle, cousin or whatever who constantly leaves you shaking your head and wondering “what the heck is going on with him/her?” In the NFC East, that is the Washington Redskins.
Maybe it’s because the Redskins represent the nation’s capital, but Washington has been its own worst enemy for years. The 2017 version is no exception. Let’s take a closer look as we finish our look at the Giants’ 2017 opponents.
NFC East: 3rd
Offense: No. 12 in points scored, No. 3 in yards gained
Defense: No. 19 in points allowed, No. 28 in yards allowed
WR Terrelle Pryor, WR Brian Quick, S D.J. Swearinger, ILB Zach Brown; DE Terrell McClain, Stacy McGee
WR DeSean Jackson, WR Pierre Garçon; DE Chris Baker, DE Ricky Jean Francois
- Round 1 (No. 17) — DE Jonathan Allen
- Round 2 (No. 49) — OLB Ryan Anderson
- Round 3 (No. 81) — CB Fabian Moreau
- Round 4 (No. 114) — RB Samaje Perine
- Round 5 (No. 154) — TE Jeremy Sprinkle
- Round 6 (No. 199) — C Chase Roullier
- Round 6 (No. 209) — WR Robert Davis
- Round 7 (No. 230) — S Josh Harvey-Clemons
- Round 7 (No. 235) — DB Joshua Holsey
Biggest Storyline Heading Into Training Camp
The biggest story of the offseason is obviously the ongoing contract drama with QB Kirk Cousins. This will be settled, at least for this year, by the July 17th deadline to either sign a long-term deal or play out the franchise tag (it was settled, as Cousins will play under the tag). The firing of Scot McCloughan, and Bruce Allen stepping back out of the shadows, and the subsequent “restructuring” of the front office was the other big storyline that affects the team. — Hogs Haven
Under-The-Radar Storyline Heading Into Training Camp
Major turnover in the coaching staff affects both sides of the ball. Defensive coordinator Joe Barry was fired after two uninspired seasons, and will be replaced by OLB coach Greg Manusky. The Redskins also added defensive line coach Jim Tomsula to finally improve the DL. Offensive coordinator Sean McVay left for a head coaching job with the Los Angeles Rams and will be replaced by QB coach Matt Cavanaugh. Jay Gruden will return to calling plays on offense this year. The defense seems improved and the offense has more question marks. — Hogs Haven
Three Questions About The Redskins
Ed: What is your favorite thing that the Redskins accomplished this offseason?
Hunter: Firing Joe Barry was pretty satisfying. Everyone knew it was a bad hire from the start, and then hearing how badly Jay Gruden handled his interview with Wade Phillips made it even worse. Wade was obviously the better choice and the results of the Barry vs Phillips defenses has been very telling.
Greg Manusky and DL coach Jim Tomsula are an improvement in coaching, and adding talent in free agency and the draft will help improve a defense that desperately needed it. Zach Brown, Jonathan Allen, Ryan Anderson, and Fabian Moreau(when he's healthy) will be big parts of the improvement this season, and hopefully for years to come.
Ed: What is the one thing they did not accomplish, or that happened to them, that has you the most concerned?
Hunter: Firing GM Scot McCloughan and not getting a long-term deal done with Kirk Cousins are the two biggest things this offseason. McCloughan being fired pulls the curtain back to let everyone know that this is still, and always has been, the Bruce Allen (and Dan Snyder) show. McCloughan came with the reputation of building through the draft, and has brought in some talent and seemed to be building a better team.
The big one is obviously not being able to lock up QB Kirk Cousins long-term for a second year in a row. The Redskins have been waiting for Cousins to prove something that he might never be able to prove to them. He's played his way to a top deal, but the Redskins have had disagreements about his value and that shows in the guaranteed money of the contracts they've offered him. Now we wait another year, and do the same dance again next year, and could see another game of tag next offseason. Washington has Colt McCoy and Nate Sudfeld on the bench, and neither one is the future. Getting Cousins signed would have been a big deal or the team and the fans, but Bruce Allen is running the show...
Ed: Are you optimistic that this will be a good season for the Redskins or pessimistic that a down year might be coming?
Hunter: I'm usually very medium going into the season, and this year isn't any different. There's a lot of coaching changeover, and there are upgrades on the defensive side. The offense remains the question mark with DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon leaving in free agency. Their replacements are free agent Terrelle Pryor and Josh Doctson who's returning from a lost rookie season. Rob Kelley and Samaje Perine should improve the run game this year behind an offensive line that continues to get better. I still think they are in that 7-9 win range, but if the defense improves more than expected, they could exceed my expectations. Kirk Cousins needs another big year, and he should be up to the task going into another contract year.
This appears to be a franchise that can’t stand success. Or, maybe at its core is a franchise headed by people (ahem, umm, Daniel Snyder and Bruce Allen) who would apparently rather not have success if other people are the ones getting credit for it.
Anyway, the Redskins dumped a quality general manager is McLoughan for no real apparent reason, and they appear intent on running Cousins out of town.
Whatever. Watching the Redskins do business should make Giants’ fans appreciate the imperfect, but at least solidly run franchise they root for.