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Mailbag: Will Morgan Moses start for the Redskins in 2014?

Jun 26, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT

I got so many good questions on Twitter and on the Real Redskins Facebook page that I decided to do a two-parter. Here’s Part One from yesterday, let’s get rolling to the rest of them.

I think that the one that will play out in plain sight in Richmond and in the preseason games is the place kicker battle between Kai Forbath and Zach Hocker. Although Forbath has been solid on field goals in his year and a half in the NFL his kickoffs have left a lot to be desired. If Hocker can consistently boom long field goals at the Bon Secours training center and kicks off deep into the end zone he will give Forbath a run for his money. Among the “real” football players, I think there will be a lot of competition along the defensive line. I don’t see any surprise cuts there at this point but they will battle it out for game day active status and playing time.

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I don’t see that happening to any great extent. They will let Morris do what he does best, run the football. Roy Helu and, eventually, Lache Seastrunk will catch passes. I will say that Morris probably will catch more than the nine he caught last year, perhaps enough to make the defense have to pay some attention to him. But don’t look for it to become anything more than a very minor part of the offense.

Let’s take both of the Moses questions at once here. I think that there’s a slim chance that Moses starts against the Texans but I’m looking at him being the 2015 opening day starter. As far as what Gruden says about him, well, a third-round rookie offensive lineman needs a lot of work. It’s simply a fact. On top of that, I get the impression that Moses is the type of player who needs to be pushed. Many rookies, high draft picks and undrafted free agents and everyone in between, come into the NFL without a clue as to the work ethic needed to be successful in the NFL. That doesn’t mean they’re “lazy”, it means they need to take it to another level. I don’t think Gruden wanted Moses to get comfortable during OTAs and minicamp, moving him from side to side and keeping the pressure on him with, among other things, his comments to the media.

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I don’t see any Week 1 surprises. Ryan Clark and Brandon Meriweather are the odds-on favorite to start the season at free and strong safety, respectively. I’ll give Phillip Thomas a 20 percent chance of pushing Meriweather to the bench; Clark is safe. As far as Week 17, man, that’s a long way off. Will they be resting their starters for the playoffs? Seriously, I’d say there is an 80 percent chance that Thomas has beaten out Meriweather for the starting job by then.

He hasn’t really stood out in a good or bad way. Minnifield should be fully healthy; he had to deal with both microfracture surgery and a torn ACL as a rookie in 2012. The depth chart at CB has numbers but not a lot of high quality. There will be an opportunity for him to win a job in training camp, especially if he embraces the idea of playing special teams, something he didn’t have much enthusiasm for after he made the 53-man roster last year. That got him a permanent spot on the game day inactive list.

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Thanks for reading, Scott! Tell your friends. And I think you’re close on the O-line. I just don’t see Long starting over Chester at this point in time. He might before the season is out but I think Week 1 Chester survives.

  1. kenlinkins - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:01 PM

    Rich, IMO the Redskins have a real complex puzzle to solve on the O-Line. Can they start a first time starter at RG next to Kory L if Chester does not work out? How many roster spots must be taken to ensure they do not give up on a quality guy or have to keep a stop gap guy because the center position,RG or RT is weak? Can Compton make the team while they wait on Moses to be ready? Can McGlynn be better at power run blocking then Kory L? Will Lauvao be the answer next to T. Williams? Can Reed learn to block in the power running game. Like you I think the answer is on the 90 man roster and will not be known until later in the year, but it seems to me that could lead to keeping as many as 11 guys on the 53 man roster as none of the guys (Long, LeRibues, Hurt, Gettis, Lauvao, McGlynn, Compton, Kory L., Polumbus or Moses) can be placed on the Practice Squad. (you would not risk Moses or Long). The over riding question then becomes how long until RG3 trust his O-Line knowing that the Redskins are in transition? Right now it is Williams, Lauvao, Kory L, Chester and Polumbus, what are the odds the Redskins get it correct by opening day? (I can not wait to see these guys in pads knowing jobs are there for the taking and that there is no landing spot on the Practice Squad if you fail).

    • Rich Tandler - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:07 PM

      11 OL on the 53 simply isn’t going to happen. They carried 8 last year, 9 seems likely this year, 10 is pushing it and 11 simply would leave you too short elsewhere. If you lose somebody, you lose him. As for Griffin, he needs to get rid of the ball quickly and trust his OL to do their jobs.

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      • kenlinkins - Jun 27, 2014 at 9:57 AM

        OK, maybe 11 is pushing it, but I do see 10 making the 53 man roster on opening day. They may cut a vet like Chester later in the year if someone can knock him out of the starting position, or have an injury on the O-Line and they do not bring up a O-Lineman from the Practice Squad, but I still see 10 to start with.

        • Rich Tandler - Jun 27, 2014 at 10:25 AM

          If they’re going to cut Chester or Polumbus it’s going to be before the season. Vested vets who are on the roster for Week 1 have their salaries guaranteed for the entire season. They’re not going to want to eat the balance of $3 million (Chester) or $2.5 million (Polumbus) deals.

          I still think 10 is a stretch unless they want to go with 5 WRs.

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  2. michaelwilbar - Jun 27, 2014 at 7:05 PM

    hey what about richard crawford? He was a really good player and made some nice plays everytime i saw him on the field. no one remembers him at all and i want to know if he is looking good, or is he still injured or what? This guy can play ball and no one has said one word about him

    • Rich Tandler - Jun 27, 2014 at 7:08 PM

      I’ve mentioned him a few times. Not much to write, though, because he’s been working out on the side with the other injured players. He seems to be optimistic about being ready for training camp but we’ll see.

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