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Need to Know: 5 offensive Redskins with a lot on the line in OTAs

May 28, 2014, 5:42 AM EST

Polumbus-practice

Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, May 28, 20 days before the start of minicamp.

Nickel coverage

(Still on vacation, enjoying some beautiful sunsets in the Outer Banks. But fresh content is back in your Need to Know. I still might be slow in approving first comments and responding.)

Here are five offensive players with a lot on the line as OTAs get into full swing this week. Tomorrow I’ll look at five defensive players with a lot at stake.

OT Tyler Polumbus—The organization tried to sign Donald Penn to replace Polumbus immediately and, failing that, they draft Morgan Moses to replace him eventually. Every offensive lineman will be under the microscope, none more so than Polumbus.

FB Darrel Young—Jay Gruden’s Bengals lined up with just one running back on 83 percent of their plays in 2013. That doesn’t necessarily mean that the 2014 Redskins will do the same but Young be under the gun to show that he warrants a roster spot playing a position that isn’t utilized much.

WR Santana Moss—He turns 35 on Sunday. He was the second-oldest receiver in the NFL last year, just a few weeks younger than Steve Smith of the Panthers (now Ravens). The NFL is always a “what have you done for me lately” environment and when you have a new head coach like the Redskins do it’s “what are you doing for me right now”. Moss appeared to be on the verge of getting cut by Mike Shanahan but he turned it up a notch and survived. He’ll need to do that again.

WR Aldrick Robinson—At this point, Gruden doesn’t care about the potential that Robinson showed in college, the speed that made Shanahan draft him. Robinson needs to show consistency to go with his speed if he is going to stick around this year.

TE Logan Paulsen—Unlike the others listed here, Paulsen’s roster spot is safe for this year. But the arrival of Gruden, who likes to utilize multiple tight ends in his offense, will give him an opportunity to show what he can do as a pass catcher. If he performs well, Gruden may not be so anxious to acquire another tight end in the 2015 draft or in free agency.

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Timeline

—It’s been 150 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be 102 days until the play the Texans in their season opener.

Days until: Minicamp starts 20; Training camp 56; Redskins @ Eagles 116

  1. CavemanCatching - May 28, 2014 at 12:20 PM

    Hope your enjoying your vacation, Rich. Well deserved!
    As for Logan Paulsen, I think he is a much better receiver than given credit for. Two seasons ago, when he had to step in for Fred Davis, he did a very good job and made some tough key receptions.

  2. skinsdawg - May 28, 2014 at 7:14 PM

    Just saw in another article, the comments underneath…. where a guy was slamming us. Said the ESPN power ratings were up, and had the Eagles 9. G-Men were 19 I think. And I believe he said The Boys were 22 and Skins were 28. Wow. 4th worst team in the NFL. I just find that hard to believe, and as another poster promptly pointed out, the same (ESPN) Power Rankings from the previous year were hilarious. Not even close.

    So take it for what you want, but I think the Redskins are going to be dramatically improved this year. I could see anywhere from 6-10 to maybe 11-5. Broad spectrum- I know. So if you made me guess, I’m gonna say 9-7. I think the team is going to be very competitive, and I see a couple of glaring weaknesses. Otherwise, last season was one of the strangest, and unluckiest I’ve ever seen. Injuries, organizational dysfunction, the bogus 2-yr cap penalties, etc. And Shanahan was just done. It was obvious to everyone, including himself.

    So yeah- I like the position battles above. We will go from one of the worst WR corps in the NFL… to one of the Top 3 or 4 I think. KILLER young TE, and hopefully he’s injury-free this year. Defense will be much improved, but not great. But I could see the D being 18th or 20th rage- instead of 32nd. I see a lot more stability with guys coming back, settling in, much improved D-Line, etc. And this offense could be totally explosive. ST much better. Can’t be worse. Bottom Line for me…… is the O-Line going to be HORRIBLE again- like in the past 8-10 years? Or are some guys finally going to step up? I am really worried about that. And it could spell disaster. Otherwise, I think the team will be much better.

    • redskinsnameisheretostay - May 29, 2014 at 10:40 AM

      After a 3-13 season and another year without a 1st round draft pick, I can understand outsiders having serious doubts about the team. There are still many that question the draft selection of Murphy including myself. I do like the approach of selecting smart capable players instead of going for the high risk, high reward players. As for free agent pickups; I know many here love the Hatcher signing but I remind myself he only had one distinquished season which doesn’t make him a sure thing and neither is Tracy Porter. Jackson IMO was the prize pick up and we have the Eagles to thank for that one.

      Regarding Shanahan; both Allen and RG3 got their way and there is clear evidence Shanahan couldn’t have been too bad of a decision maker for the team since most his players, coaches, and schemes are still around. Personally, I think the relationship issue was as much between Allen and Shanahan as it was RG3. I’ll hold judgement for the this season to determine if we got rid of the problem or just compounded it. This season could will determine if we are on the right track or on the wrong track to many bad seasons ahead.

  3. skinsdawg - May 28, 2014 at 7:17 PM

    WR: In order…. best to worse, or best fit for team with last few spots…… I think we keep (6) on the active roster, and it starts out: Garcon, Jackson, Roberts, Cody Hoffman, Ryan Grant…… and then #6 for stability and leadership…… you go with either Moss or Hank. I’d go Hank, if he’s healthy. Big if. Moss one of the All-Time great Redskins. No one has ever played here with more heart and dedication. Just finally time to move on. I just hope they can make a spot in DC for Moss to stay on, with the organization, if he wants it.

    • redskinsnameisheretostay - May 29, 2014 at 10:42 AM

      I think Hoffman and Grant are TC cuts and then practice squad player additions. I like your list of WRs but still think both Moss and Hank get one more season.

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