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Need to Know: Six Redskins over 30 will play key roles in 2015

Jun 29, 2015, 4:57 AM EDT

Hatcher-on-sled-minicamp

Here is what you need to know on this Monday, June 29, 31 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp.

The senior citizens

The Redskins are likely to go into the season with six players on their roster who are 30 or older. Most of them will be expected to play key roles this season. Here are the old men of the Redskins and what the team will be looking for from them this year

(Ages as of opening day)

C Kory Lichtensteiger, 30—He will be the starting center and will have to adjust to a change in the running game philosophy from one that emphasized zone blocking to one that will run more power blocking plays. That could be a challenge for the 296-lb. veteran.

DL Kedric Golston, 32—It looks like he will survive a purge on the defensive line that saw three of his line mates from last year depart, although his presence on the 53 is not a sure thing. If he is still around he will play 15-20 snaps in the defensive line rotation, mostly at the end spots but perhaps some at nose tackle as well.

FS Dashon Goldson, 30—He will be the starting free safety. The team will be counting on him to rebound to something close to his 2012 All-Pro form after two bad seasons in Tampa Bay. They don’t have much in the way of depth there so he will need to get it done.

ILB Adam Hayward, 31—It will not be surprising if he ends up as the fifth inside linebacker on the depth chart. His importance to the Redskins comes on special teams where he will again be the captain and show the younger special teamers the Redskins brought in like Evan Spencer and Kyshoen Jarrett the ropes.

CB DeAngelo Hall, 32—The Redskins likely would like to see David Amerson become the third defensive back and have Hall come off the bench in dime situations. But if Amerson’s rocky 2014 shows signs of continuing in this season they won’t hesitate to give Hall a bigger role, assuming he is fully healthy after tearing his Achilles twice last year.

DE Jason Hatcher, 33—The senior member of the team will start at right defensive end and the coaches will be looking for at least eight sacks from him, maybe more. Quality play from Hatcher could also make life easier for young, inexperienced right outside linebackers Trent Murphy.

The Redskins will start three players who are past the age of 30, Lichtensteiger, Goldson, and Hatcher. Last year they had seven players over 30 at the top of the depth chart at the start of the season—Hatcher, Hall, NT Barry Cofield, SS Brandon Meriweather, FS Ryan Clark, and G Chris Chester.

Timeline

—It’s been 183 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be 76 days until they play the Dolphins at FedEx Field.

Days until: Redskins training camp starts 31; Preseason opener @ Browns 45; final cuts 68

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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  1. kenlinkins - Jun 29, 2015 at 8:24 AM

    Three key words here: “Contract” “Injury” and “Development”. Only Hatcher and Goldson have contracts that will place them on the 53 man roster. Only Hatcher and Goldson would be placed on I/R for a season ending injury in preseason games as the rest are not counted on moving pass this season. The other four must avoid injury to make the team as there is a Cap savings for each. If guys like Mitchel, Rogers, Amerson, Kearse, Thomas, Compton, Jeffcoat, Spaight, Wiliams, Long, Reiter, or Larsen breakout on Special Team to the point of becoming a risk as placements on the Practice Squad the Redskins will have less than 6 over 30 guys. This makes for a long season for these 4 vets and the odds are 1 or 2 will get a injury having to produce to make the team. The lack of development over the years as allowed many vets to continue in the NFL via the Redskins but this could be the year that turns around. The new GM seems to have a very good sense of the true value of players and could move on from any one of the 4 who do not have a contract that places them on the 53 man roster. Hall, Kory L, Golston and Hayward will have to show more and stay injury free to make this team. This year the term “Making the team” means just that!

    • bangkokben - Jun 29, 2015 at 10:11 AM

      IR doesn’t work that way.

      • abanig - Jun 29, 2015 at 10:18 AM

        Ha! Yeah, I wish it still did like it used to in the 80s but it’s been a while since IR worked like that…

        • abanig - Jun 29, 2015 at 10:24 AM

          Kory L and Hall are virtual locks to make the roster. Kory is the redskins starting center and only “true ” center with any nfl experience.

          Hall is going to be needed this year and he was badly missed last year. Losing him hurt our secondary a lot, at worst Hall will be the Redskins 3rd corner

        • bangkokben - Jun 29, 2015 at 11:02 AM

          Agreed about our center and Hall. Surely, you’re referring to stashing future players on IR for bruised knees not cutting guys with a serious injury just so management can save a buck.

    • Trey Gregory - Jun 29, 2015 at 7:18 PM

      Ken, one thing you did get right is that Scot M. seems to have a good sense of the value of players. Hopefully the days of signing veterans past their prime is over and we continue to get younger. I don’t necessarily mind having Hatcher around at all, but I doubt Scot would have signed him. Just based off what I’ve seen and heard about him this offseason.

  2. timwillhidetimwillhide - Jun 29, 2015 at 8:40 AM

    Im not worried about the linemen because a linemen’s decline usually doesn’t start till they are closer to 35 just gotta watch out for injuries more. Although I never liked Golston. Linbackers can usually extend their career by switching to a 3-4 not as much feild to cover compared to a 4-3. FS and CB are the 2 positions mentioned I would be concerned about because at 30 you don’t really loose your speed it’s your Burst you loose so it takes you longer to build up to yor top speed. Around 35 is when you start to loose over all speed. I’m more wored about CB than FS because at FS you are usually covering slower players than WRs ie TEs and RBs and you can make up for lack of Speed/Burst with making proper reads and taking proper angles to adjust for the lose of Speed/Burst. At CB the only thing that can help is getting a good jam at the line and covering slower players.

  3. mr.moneylover - Jun 29, 2015 at 8:50 AM

    Deangleo Hall as a backup I never picture that happening if deangleo dont start it will be clearly because hes not healthy…I think jay gruden is scared to give david amerson that starting job because how bad of a player he was last year… what do the media expect for jay gruden to do bash David amerson publicly jay gruden learn from last year thats not the way to be a head coach and a leader of men…I wanna hear about the undrafted players because a few of those undrafted players gonna push out somebody bein cut…who is gonna be the surprise cut or cuts ??? We will find out soon

    • ET - Jun 29, 2015 at 12:50 PM

      If Hall can come back in reasonably good form, that’ll be huge. He’s still a formidable cornerback when he’s healthy. Even if he’s sharing time with Breeland or Amerson, he can still make an impact. The secondary really missed him last year.

    • Trey Gregory - Jun 29, 2015 at 7:21 PM

      That’s just a role a lot of older guys have to embrace as they progress in their careers. There’s nothing wrong with that though. Even if he’s a backup, his leadership and experience should be invaluable to these young guys.

  4. mr.moneylover - Jun 29, 2015 at 8:59 AM

    They need to start developing the young talent players on this team…when its all said and done it will be nacho and jeron johnson playing saftey…the undrafted players and the backup players will determine how well this season goes…if we dont have better depth this season we will have another losing season

  5. brava66 - Jun 29, 2015 at 8:59 AM

    Re: Adam Hayward…

    I’m not clear on why he gets so much respect as a special teams ace for the Redskins. I understand his strong reputation coming from Tampa but there was nothing impressive about the Redskins special teams last year or the eight games that Hayward played.

    I guess my issue is why it is a given that he gets the fifth linebacker spot when there may be younger talent that the team could cultivate in that position for the future and, build special teams at the same time.

    • greed - Jun 29, 2015 at 3:07 PM

      im in total agreement with you -not sure why heyward is so valued he wasnt impressive last yr on teams he older has no true lb position his reputation was earned on another team at this point he should be in competition with the other position linebackers as well

  6. shermanp79 - Jun 29, 2015 at 9:14 AM

    It didn’t seem like they had that many. I think its obvious Goldson is the most important one on that list. If he can’t be who he was prior to TB, they have some issues. I know Kory is important but I think they look to get bigger there if a young guy steps up. With change coming at a couple of other spots, I think they want him there starting out for the experience. Then see how things go from there but pressure up the middle has been an issue. Not good for young QBs. I want Hall on the team, even if only a nickel guy,his experience is a plus. It would be great if Hatcher stays healthy but the DLINE is much better, they could deal with his loss easier this year.
    Having Heyward’s leadership on ST is a plus but they weren’t much better with him. I think Golston struggles to make the team. I like him but there is better talent. We obviously are rebuilding , most of these guys are gone after this year but we could use the experience of a few for another year.

    • ET - Jun 29, 2015 at 12:43 PM

      Fortunately for Hatcher, the improved DL depth should mean he can rotate in and out regularly. It should help Hatcher stay healthy … I hope.

  7. abanig - Jun 29, 2015 at 9:36 AM

    “FS Dashon Goldson, 30—He will be the starting strong safety. ”

    Rich, you had a contradiction here. Goodson is going to be playing free safety right? In your sentence you mentioned he’d be playing strong safety.

  8. berniebernard666 - Jun 29, 2015 at 3:55 PM

    I have no idea why Kedric Golston is on the list of players who have a key role. Kedric is a guy. Just a guy. He hasn’t made incredible plays stuffing the run. He has no sacks and no pass rush ability. Generally he has hung around the past few years because he was healthy, while Redskins management allowed injured players to claim a big paycheck for sitting on the bench recovering. Kedric is one of the reasons the Skins defense couldn’t stop anyone last year.

    Kedric is a good teammate, I am sure. Never gets in trouble off the field. But as invisible as he is off the field, he is even more invisible on the field. He should be replaced with a younger defensive lineman who has potential to improve because Kedric is not going to suddenly EMERGE with talent.. Keeping Golston as the Redskins rebuild their roster makes zero sense.

    • bangkokben - Jun 29, 2015 at 4:24 PM

      Golston is not guaranteed a place on the roster. He is NOT one of the reasons the Skins defense couldn’t stop anybody either. He is one of those guys that does his job and is one of the last ten on the roster. Replacing him will do NOTHING to improving the team in the here and now. Now if someone beats him out this year, hooray! But let’s not make Kedric Golston more important than he is.

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