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Need to Know: Redskins’ O-line need may depend on last year’s picks

Feb 18, 2015, 4:33 AM EDT


INDIANAPOLIS—Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, February 18, 20 days before the Washington Redskins and the rest of the NFL start free agency.

Question of the day

While I’m here at the NFL Combine this week, I’m going to change it up a bit. I’m going to pose the question each morning centered around the draft and the position group that will be talking to the media on that day. You can find the daily schedule here. Up today, the offensive line.

Will the Redskins draft offensive linemen early and often?

Although just how bad off the Redskins’ offensive line is going into the offseason is a matter for debate, there is no question that the unit needs to be improved. The debate is between those who think it’s mediocre and those who think it’s awful.

Since new general manager Scot McCloughan is committed to building through the draft, any improvement over the players they currently have on the roster is likely to come from there.

So will the Redskins go hog wild, pardon the pun, drafting offensive linemen when the draft gets underway on April 30?

It seems unlikely that they will start on the O-line with their first pick. There isn’t an offensive linemen who would represent good value with the fifth overall pick out there. McCloughan is going to take the best available player at that spot and he won’t reach even if he perceives a need on the line.

As Mike Manock noted in a conference call yesterday, a lot may depend on what McCloughan thinks of Spencer Long and Morgan Moses. They were drafted in the third round last year and if the GM thinks that they can form the right side of the offensive line sooner rather than later, the line will drop down the list of needs.

Even if the Redskins want to add some offensive linemen, it may be tough to get the bigger bodies that McCloughan prefers. As noted here a few weeks ago, this draft is short on quality offensive linemen that weigh 320 or more pounds. Supply and demand will limit

Still, they will be doing their due diligence with the offensive linemen here. Even if Moses and Long are penciled in as starters, the team will need some depth to replace the inevitable departures.

So while I wouldn’t look for the Redskins to make a run on O-linemen, they will hope to get one or two big bodies to develop and keep a ready supply of young talent available for when the need arises.


—It’s been 52 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be about 207 days until they play another one.

Days until: NFL free agency starts 20; Redskins offseason workouts start 61; 2015 NFL Draft 71

If you have any questions about what’s going on at Redskins Park, hit me up in the comments. And I’m always on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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In case you missed it

  1. wannabeahog - Feb 18, 2015 at 5:59 AM

    I think they will go defense. A pass rusher and a safety would be the best early round drafts.

  2. skinsgame - Feb 18, 2015 at 7:49 AM

    The switch to positional coach in Bill Callahan was welcome after watching Trent Williams underwhelm for the past few years. For all of the praise that is consistently heaped onto Williams, he has not been a dominant tackle and I always felt Foerster was responsible for that. Callahan has played a role in developing several stars along offensive lines and the excuses for Williams should be gone shortly. Moses’ injury will setback his development but, sooner rather than later, we’re going to find out what the other guys have.

    • bangkokben - Feb 18, 2015 at 11:22 AM

      Williams at 80% was 100% our best o-linemen.

  3. gasngo14 - Feb 18, 2015 at 7:50 AM

    Good Morning Rich, can you tells us anything on the rumors that K Cousins is in FL working out with Jon Gruden?

  4. bowlregard - Feb 18, 2015 at 9:09 AM

    If they go Scherff (sp) at #5 that’s OK with me. The three OLBs each look risky.

    • Joe Greene - Feb 18, 2015 at 4:44 PM

      A LG in the NFL, who struggled with speed rushers in college, is what you’re okay with at #5?

      • timwillhidetimwillhide - Feb 18, 2015 at 10:24 PM

        No speed rushers on the inside could be a Dominate Gaurd that will only cost a couple million a year for atleast four years sounds like a good deal to me.

        • captblood3000 - Feb 19, 2015 at 12:58 PM

          No to Scherff at #5. Thank God Tim is not the Redskins GM. And watch Scherff fall on draft day. And watch Tim try to remember names or spell Guard.

  5. troylok - Feb 18, 2015 at 10:11 AM

    Some people argue that the offensive line was not as bad as it looks on paper. A lot of the sacks, they say, were due to missed blocks by tight ends and running backs. I would say that is part of the offensive line’s excuse for what’s on paper, but not all. The team did not run the ball as well as the previous season. I can’t remember a goal line stand where they ran the football straight up the gut. So, they might have been better than they looked on paper, they still weren’t great. If the team can get some raw players with size in free agency, I would say do it and look for Callahan to work some magic.

  6. captblood3000 - Feb 18, 2015 at 10:24 AM

    Rich, aside from Charlie Campbell’s alleged scoop from the Senior Bowl, has anyone with the Redskins given away their thinking regarding Long and Moses? Everything else I’ve seen has been speculation, with optimism or pessimism added to taste. At this point I’d ask Gruden but you could also try Callahan or McCloughan.

    If all else fails, the players they try to sign in free agency will tell all.

    Assuming you’re right about not taking an offensive lineman at number 5, do you see any immediate offensive line starters who might be available at #40? Or at #69, though there the guy you get might be a year or two from starting?

    Remember folks that the Redskins selected Jon Jansen with the #37 pick. So they can upgrade the 2015 offensive line with that pick. Later offensive line picks will more likely be for 2016 and beyond.

    • Joe Greene - Feb 18, 2015 at 4:45 PM

      You can literally ignore every word Charlie, and his buddy Walt, ever write down.

      • captblood3000 - Feb 19, 2015 at 12:59 PM

        I said alleged, Joe.

        • Joe Greene - Feb 19, 2015 at 5:33 PM

          I know, but in their case it’s not even valid enough to be considered alleged.

  7. bangkokben - Feb 18, 2015 at 11:27 AM


    With one being a push, how many o-linemen will the Redskins draft in 2015?

    I’m taking the under.
    This a prediction.

  8. ET - Feb 18, 2015 at 4:12 PM

    It’ll be interesting to see when or if Long and Moses pan out. Given the nature of Moses’ injury, they can’t count on him to be ready. My guess: one starter ready FA pickup (Boling?), one draft pick in the early-to-mid rounds (McCann?), plus the usual assortment of UDFAs and waiver claims.

  9. murphsman - Feb 18, 2015 at 5:26 PM

    I asked this last week Rich, but I’ll ask again:what is the word on LeRibus, or is the jury still out? Everyone talks about Chester, Moses, and Long, but LeRib seems to be a forgotten player. After three years we should know something about him Archives

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