NFL Team Profiles Washington Redskins by Utter-Fantasy Writer & Illustrator Doug Bowles
NFL Team profiles- Washington Redskins 2015. Head coaches and quarterbacks usually don’t stick around Washington too long if they’re not successful…quickly. RG3 is still on the roster because his rookie season was impressive, and injuries have made it difficult to truly get a clear answer as whether he can be a franchise quarterback or not. On January 9, 2014, Jay Gruden was hired as the new head coach of Washington and 2014 ended with a disappointing record of 4-12. Gruden took over a bad team that finished 3-13 in 2013, so he is going to be given a chance to get the team right again. Since the year 2000, Washington has had 7 different head coaches, and none of them were given a 5th year. That means HC Jay Gruden has until 2017 to build a winning team…or perhaps less.
2015 Team Outlook – 2015 might be the New York Giants turn to win the NFC East. Dallas won it in 2014, Philly in 2013, and Washington won the division in 2012. Washington has been in re-building mode since owner Dan Snyder bought the team in 1999. Since his purchase, Washington has only won the division once, while the other three teams can boast of having won it at least 3 times. (Many articles have been written claiming that the problem isn’t coaches or players, but Snyder himself.) The Cowboys are the reigning champs and the most stable team in the division, so it’s a good probability that they’ll win the division 2 years in a row
2015 Fantasy Outlook –
QB- It’s becoming pretty clear that new HC Jay Gruden isn’t a fan of QB Robert Griffin III. Last season Gruden and the quarterback had verbal confrontations and the coach later benched RG3 for back-up Colt McCoy. Gruden did announce that Griffin was his starter heading into training camp, but made no assurances beyond camp. It’s a long list trying to name everything thing that has gone downhill with RG3 since his rookie season (besides his relationships with Washington coaches). Games played each year has gone from 15 to 13 to 9. Games won each year has gone from 9 to 3 to 2. Touchdowns passes have gone from 20 to 16 to 4. 2015 will be an important year for RG3. UPDATE: QB Colt McCoy resigned w/ WASH- K Cousins is the #2 QB in Washington and perhaps the best QB in Washington
RBs– RB Alfred Morris is one of those players where it feels like they’ve been in the league a lot longer than they really has. Alfred Morris was selected in the sixth round of the 2012 NFL Draft by Washington. Unlike QB RG3, the new coaching staff is excited about Morris playing for them in 2015. New offensive line coach Bill Callahan thinks his bruising style Morris is a good fit for his run game. (Last season, Callahan was the Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator and offensive line coach and turned Dallas into the league’s best unit.) RB Morris finished the 2014 season as the #13 RB in the NFL, with over 1200 total yards from scrimmage and rushing for 8 TDs on 265 carries. (6th most) If the quarterback situation becomes clear, and with Callahan as Morris’ offensive line coach, Morris could be a candidate as a top 10 RB for the 2015 season. RB Roy Helu has signed with Oakland. Washington will need to add a running back. UPDATE: Washington selected Florida RB Matt Jones with the No. 95 overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft. Jones is expected to play as the team’s third-down back and will be a worth late-round handcuff for 2015 Morris owners.
WRs– Philadelphia’s (or just Chip Kelly’s) clearing out of top talent started in 2014, when they released WR DeSean Jackson on March 28, 2014. 5 days later Jackson signed with Washington to a reported three-year, $24 million contract with $16 million guaranteed. Jackson was to be the deep threat, opposite #1 WR Pierre Garcon, which the Washington receiving corps had been missing. Considering the inconsistent quarterback situation all year in Washington, Jackson had a productive first season. He ranked as the the #17 WR in the NFL with 1169 receiving yards and 6 TDs. It was WR Pierre Garçon’s season that regressed. In 2014, Garcon had 752 receiving yards and 3TDs vs 1346 receiving yards and 5TDs in 2013. Washington’s #3 last year was former Cardinal WR Andre Roberts. UPDATE: Washington selected WR Jamison Crowder with their 4th round pick. Chowder’s height and weight are below average for the position and he’ll likely compete for a slot/return role with the Redskins. He has big time punt return ability
TEs – Washington’s #1 TE, Jordan Reed, had an injury-plagued season, logging only 465 yards and 0 TDs. Niles Paul, who had a solid season in replacement for Reed, has re-signed with the Redskins through 2017. Paul caught passes for 507 yards and 1 TD while doing yeoman’s work for the team. UPDATE: TE Niles Paul (ankle) is Out for the Season
K– Bad offenses don’t usually produce a lot of opportunities for their team’s place kicker. Case in point, only 6 teams had fewer field goal attempts in 2014 than Washington did. Kai Forbath won the kicking competition last August and successfully kicked 24 of 27 FGs in 2014. His 31 extra points were 8th fewest in the NFL (he would have had 32, but he missed one).
DEF– If you lose 12 games in the NFL, there is a very good chance that your offense isn’t the only problem. Last season Washington ranked 29th in defense, and was one of only 3 NFL teams not to score a defensive TD in any 2014 game. Only 3 teams had fewer INTs than Washington’s 7. Their 438 points allowed last year tied for 3rd worst in the NFL. I think I can safely say that their defense stunk. Washington will work free agency and try filling defensive holes in the upcoming draft. They have already started by signing former Bronco NT Terrance Knighton and more importantly signed formerly 49er CB Chris Culliver, to a four-year, $32 million contract. UPDATE: Redskins acquired FS Dashon Goldson and a 2016 seventh-round pick from the Bucs in exchange for a 2016 sixth-round pick.
2014 Washington Fantasy Surprises – Despite playing from behind in many games last season, Washington isn’t a team to give up on the running game early. Morris’ 265 carries last year, 6th most, is proof of that. WR Pierre Garcon’s 752 receiving yards vs 1346 receiving yards that he had in 2013 was surprising. Most thought that the Jackson acquisition would open the field up even more for Garcon, and prevent defenses from double teaming the wide receiver. Garcon is currently signed through 2016.
2015 Free Agents that Washington Needs to Address – QB Colt McCoy (re-signed)- RB Roy Helu (signed with Oakland)- WR Santana Moss- WR Leonard Hankerson (signed with Atlanta)- TE Niles Paul (re-signed)- OT Tyler Polumbus- DE Stephen Bowen- DE Jarvis Jenkims- DT Barry Cofield- OLB Brian Orakpo (signed with Tennessee)- CB E J Biggers (re-signed)- S Brandon Meriweather
2015 NFL Draft – The immediate needs of Washington are on defense, on their O-Line, and at quarterback. Washington’s secondary is an utter mess and there isn’t a quality safety on the roster (CB & S). OLB Brian Orakpo is now in Tennessee and the team needs another true pass rusher (DE), the offensive line only has two solid starters (OL) and even if they stick with RG3, Washington will need to replace free agent Colt McCoy if he leaves (QB). UPDATE: Washington’s entire 2015 NFL Draft can be seen at this link- WASHINGTON’S DRAFT
Did You Know – In 2009 Dan Synder, who was then worth $1.1 billion, sued 125 season ticket holders who had asked to be released from their stadium contracts due to a lost job or other financial hardships. Redskins lawyer David Donovan was quoted as saying that lawsuits are a last resort and that they involve only a small percentage of the team’s 20,000 annual premium seat contracts.
All team reports can be seen at this link- TEAM REPORTS
Team Home Page: www.redskins.com