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Need to Know: Five Redskins veterans who could be on the roster bubble

Jul 18, 2015, 5:26 AM EDT


Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, July 18, 12 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp.

Nickel coverage

Here are five Redskins veterans who could find themselves on the wrong side of the roster bubble.

DeAngelo Hall—I’ve noted a few times lately that his $4 million salary puts him in danger of being faced with the choice of being cut or taking a reduction in pay. His job security is that if he left the No. 4 corner would be Tevin Mitchel, a very raw rookie.

Josh LeRibeus—Perhaps he’s not really a veteran because he hasn’t played much but he has been on the roster for three years. If he is going to hang on as the eighth or ninth offensive lineman he will have to beat out 2014 seventh-round pick Austin Reiter and/or first-year player Tyler Larsen. As a player who was drafted by Mike Shanahan for a zone-blocking scheme, LeRibeus will need to be on top of his game to be on the roster Week 1.

Kedric Golston—Right now, the numbers seem to favor him staying. But if they decide to keep a fourth tight end or a tenth offensive lineman the roster spot could come from the defensive line. If it does, the longest-tenured Redskin would be in a fight.

Colt McCoy—I’m putting the possibility of McCoy not making the 53 in the “unlikely but could happen” category. Even though Jay Gruden might prefer to go with two quarterbacks, he likely is inclined to hold onto McCoy as a security blanket. But the final 53 isn’t completely up to Gruden; Scot McCloughan has final say on the roster. If it comes down to the Redskins being able to keep McCoy or a young player that McCloughan believes has potential, could the GM pull rank? Again, it’s not very likely but something to keep an eye on.

Kai Forbath—I don’t think that Ty Long, the undrafted rookie who was signed as the second kicker, has a realistic shot at beating out Forbath. But all it will take is a couple of missed field goals from short range and they’ll be calling in some veterans for tryouts. I sense that their confidence in Forbath is shaky and they might not hesitate to pull the trigger on a change if he should stumble.


—It’s been 202 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be 57 days until they play the Dolphins at FedEx Field.

Days until: Redskins training camp starts 12; Preseason opener @ Browns 26; final cuts 49

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In case you missed it

  1. bk70 - Jul 18, 2015 at 6:19 AM

    Great bubble list. 2015 has got to be the year to stop holding on to veterans “to provide leadership in the locker room” and nothing noteworthy on the field. Redskins must look to the future and invest heavily on youth. I’d much rather see Robert Thomas or even Travian Robertson make the 53 instead of Kedric Goldston. DeAngelo Hall shouldn’t be the DB leader on the field, Not sure who will step up till training camp is completed. Colt McCoy needs to be replaced with a young QB to be groomed via the practice squad, unless a trade happens for Kirk Cousins. Josh LeRibeus may squeak by in 2015 under the new OL coach, but I’d still like to see Tyler Larsen or Austin Reiter make the 53 also. Kai Forbath is a work-in-progress when it comes to kick-offs.

    I might add Logan Paulsen to the list, if one of the other TEs step up during training camp and pre-season.

    • Skulb - Jul 18, 2015 at 8:48 AM

      Logan is a workhorse and a good blocker. I don`t agree with letting him go unless you can FA someone similar but better. And Hall needs to be given a chance to prove he can still play. If he can it`ll be hard to find anyone better for the next two seasons.
      As always I`d say balance is they key to winning games; a running game and a passing game, good offense and good defense, youth and experience. Not either or.

      • Jeff gilfillan - Jul 18, 2015 at 10:31 AM

        I think breeland has the best chance to push d hall out. Culiver will cover the ones, then breeland, and hall can cover the slot. But hall should stay he’s a great mentor for that Defensive secondary

        • Skulb - Jul 18, 2015 at 10:40 AM

          I agree that they might and they both have potential. But we all saw last year what can happen to you when you`re inexperience in the secondary. Even Breeland was very up and down.
          All I`m saying is that you give Hall a year to show what he can do. Not good enough anymore then sure, cut him next year. Just not now. It`s premature. It might even be a huge mistake. If he manages it Hall will not be first guy to perform well in the secondary even into his forties. And if he does these calls to cut him now will seem very comical in a few years time.

      • abanig - Jul 18, 2015 at 10:56 AM

        Totally agree. Logan was injured last year with plantar fasciitis as well, most fans don’t know it. His foot injury wasn’t widely reported but it affected his ability to run and push off when he was blocking.

        Until there is someone better, we need to keep the guys we have.

    • bangkokben - Jul 18, 2015 at 9:29 AM

      The only thing I agree with about your assessment is Logan Paulsen. If Mahina or someone else shows that they can be that blocking TE, then I’d put Paulsen on the list. As for Kedric Golston, he is a non-factor. He has somehow become the poster child for what’s wrong with the Redskins but last I checked he was still on the team when the team developed Frank Kearse and Chris Baker. So he isn’t stealing a spot from anyone that might be developed. He gives you reliability. You know what you’re going to get from him at practice, in games, and off the field. Every team needs some lunch pail guys – especially a team that is infusing it’s roster with a bunch of youth – and Golston is one of these blue collar guys that has maximized his talent. If this is the year that his run is over, fine; but looking for his replacement just because fans like you are sick of seeing his name on the roster is ridiculous. The practice squad is where you stash guys like the ones you mentioned. When they’re ready, you promote them. Putting one on the roster before they are ready would be wasting a roster spot IMO. I’d like to see Larsen or Reiter make the team over LeRibeus as well but don’t see it happening. One or both might make the practice squad, but neither is likely to make the active 45 unless they somehow can suddenly play guard at this level and then be the emergency center. LeRibs makes the team for this reason only – back up guard on game day AND the emergency center. Then if Steiger gets injured, one of the practice squad centers get promoted to the team the following week.

      As a general rule, guys get replaced when their contract is too high or their skills diminish AND there is a replacement on the roster. Too early to tell if Hall’s skills have diminished and way to early to tell if there is a suitable 4th corner on the roster. At this point, this is a case where the organization should honor it’s side of the contract. If there is a replacement and Hall’s skills have diminished enough, the Redskins have to decide if they rather have the dead money of Hall’s contract or Hall. Lastly, if they cut McCoy, they gave him $150,000 just to be a Redskin for the off season and they still need a third QB due to Griffins frailty.

    • Trey Gregory - Jul 18, 2015 at 6:27 PM

      I can’t agree with cutting Paulson or Hall. Because we don’t have anybody better waiting to take over. Hall has proven he can be a pro bowl caliber corner when healthy, we have to wait and see if he still has that or not. Paulson is our only TE that can block. Getting rid of him would be nuts. Obviously if they have somebody better that could take over, then fine. That’s easy to say. But they don’t have anyone better or else these guys would have already been cut. Well, maybe not already. But there would be more reports about the young players likely to take their spots.

  2. abanig - Jul 18, 2015 at 7:18 AM

    I only agree with about half the list.

    1. The only way Hall isn’t making the team is if he can’t play. Even then, he could go to PUP and come back mid season. Having Hall as a 3rd/4th corner and 3rd FS is invaluable- even if he’s lost a step because of his injury.

    2. I guess Leribeus is on the bubble but I honestly think there is a better than 50% chance he makes the team. The Redskins should carry 10 offensive linemen and IMO Leribeus will prove to be the team’s 3rd best guard for the 3rd time in his 4 year career. Keeping 5 young OL as back ups and continuing to develop them under one of the best OL coaches in the makes a lot of sense.

    I don’t agree that McCoy or Kai are that much in danger of being cut also.

    For me, the most likely person to be cut on the list is Kedric Golston. I love the guy but the fact that for the past 2 years they haven’t found a young DL to replace him is frankly a disgrace and points to the fact that this organization olds on to over the hill vets too long and doesn’t develop young potential players with enough.

  3. colorofmyskinz - Jul 18, 2015 at 7:48 AM

    Agree on all of these!! Hall is a big concern. I really thought they already restructured his contract, but I guess not. They should have done this already. 31 with 2 torn Achilles within weeks vs development of a younger healthy potential? Before Scot the skins would have offered him an extension with bonus, with SCOT he is all but gone. Really liked him but Father Time is tough.

    Finally someone is looking at Kai. They should. He is a big issue that is harming our ball position on kickoffs. It is not just coverage causing the poor ball position. He costs us 10 to 15 yards on every kickoff. That is massive. He gives us very few options with the 2 minute drill because of his distance issue. We have to move the ball 10 more yards on a 2 minute drill vs other teams just to be confident in range. Another big issue. Will need to pull the bandaid off.

    I would much rather have an extra TE vs Cedric. I think our line D improvements gives us that option. Also Preston gives us that option. We have to assume we have only 2 TEs until we see Reed play 8 games plus.

    Best thing Reed can do is lose 20-25lbs and change position to WR. Might be easier on him. He does not have the attitude to deliver pain on the field like most TEs. Would be a great large WR. He can’t perform at the other important functions of TE any way, even when healthy – blocking and protection. Our TE depth is horrible. Basically we show our playbook by which TE is on the field. Paulson comes on and it is a run play, Reed or Paul comes on and it is a pass. If Paul could block like Paulson, or if Paulson could catch like Paul, I would prefer either vs Reed. That way the defense would be guessing every play which they should be. This TE issue is major. Very few teams have this problem – telegraphing run vs pass by the person on the field.

    • bangkokben - Jul 18, 2015 at 7:46 PM

      From “Over the Cap:” “DeAngelo Hall signed a four year contract extension with the Washington Redskins worth $17 million on February 19, 2014. Hall received a $3.25 million signing bonus and has $5.4 million in guarantees. $1.15 million of his 2014 salary is fully guaranteed while he will earn $1.25 million in guaranteed salary in 2015 if he is on the roster on the 14th day of the 2015 League Year. Hall agreed to waive the $1.25M 2015 guarantee out of his contract in February.”

      Also ” Total Value: $17,000,000 (avg. $4,250,000/year; $4,400,000 fully guaranteed)
      35th highest of 298 CB contracts”

      The only concern is injury. There is zero cap concern and zero concern of him costing some young talent valuable time to develop. He waived the guarantee, but the Redskins would still be on the hook for $2,437,500 in dead money if they released him before the season. So they then add $2,375,000 to this year’s cap which is already $8M under. So unless there is a $10M man that the Redskins must have (which there isn’t), it makes no sense.

      Last year, Hall’s cap hit was $2,062,500 while Tracey Porter’s was $2.8M. Again, since the Redskins made the deal shouldn’t they keep it?

  4. colorofmyskinz - Jul 18, 2015 at 8:24 AM

    I think if Paul’s increase in size and strength and focus on blocking makes him a better all around TE, he takes the starting role from Reed.

    When is the last time you heard Reed say he wants to be a better blocker? Never. He does not have the mindset. He is a pass catcher only and that is all he wants to do. You have to want to block to be good at it. And Paul wants it.

    • Trey Gregory - Jul 19, 2015 at 9:29 PM

      I will do backflips if Paul turns into a decent blocking TE. Nothinf would make me happier (Except if one of our QBs turned into Aaron Rogers in 2015.) However, the fact remains that it’s unlikely Paul will turn into a decent blocker. Even with an added 10 lbs, he’s still undersized. I don’t think our TE problems get fixed with the guys we currently have on our roster, even if Reed stays healthy. We need a solid blocking TE. It would also be nice to find a guy around 6’5 to play that Joker TE and catch passes. That guy is not on this roster.

  5. gonavybeatarmy - Jul 18, 2015 at 9:59 AM

    This is is a pretty good list given the parameters. McCoy is a very below average QB at a time when the rules strongly favor the QB position. His arm strength is at best minimal, and he’ll be 29 before the start of the season.

    McCoy’s highlight last season, as we all know, was the Dallas game. But the Skins only scored 17 points in regulation during that game, six below the league average of 23. The Saint Louis game last season was so hard to watch. During that game, McCoy quite simply didn’t resemble a professional QB.

    As to the QB position, this season should be about determing whether Griffin or Cousins is the likely long term solution. McCoy is just a distraction, and he’s taking up a roster position.

    • sidepull - Jul 18, 2015 at 11:02 AM

      McCoy is not the answer here or anywhere. The D won that game but McCoy got the credit on his farve like play he pulled out of his arse.

      • abanig - Jul 18, 2015 at 3:46 PM

        There’s no reason why McCoy can’t be the next Rich Gannon in the nfl.

        • timwillhidetimwillhide - Jul 19, 2015 at 1:32 AM

          I actually was checking out an article that compared the 3 QBs and I must say McCoy was either 2nd or 1st in each category. The Article had film of all 3 QBs and Broke it down Fairly well. Their may have bin 1 or 2 Plays where I didn’t agree with their assessment but for the most part they were pretty good. McCoy does have A Lot of the skill sets to be a starter just not a huge arm but it is good enough.

        • abanig - Jul 19, 2015 at 1:50 PM

          Can you post that article here or email it to me at


      • Trey Gregory - Jul 19, 2015 at 9:37 PM

        This is in response to Tim: McCoy got a raw deal in Cleveland, no real chance for success. I have no problem with him as a backup either. But there’s no way I’m ok with him being the starter. I trust him in a pinch, but not for the whole season. I understand the stats you’re talking about, but the sample size is so small. I do believe McCoy possesses some of the attributes needed for a good NFL QB, but that arm strength is killer man. It really is. He can’t make all the throws and he certainly can’t throw across his body. That’s something he needs to do when pass protection breaks down. His arm strength limits the deep passing game too. A smart defense can make him pretty one dimensional. I would rather have RG3 the starter and Cousins the backup to start. If RG3 can’t show improvement around week 6 or 8, then fine, give Cousins one last shot to show what he’s made of. But we basically know what McCoy is, and he doesn’t have youth or health on his side. I have no issue with the team cutting him.

  6. mr.moneylover - Jul 18, 2015 at 11:46 AM

    I dont think deangleo hall will get cut…its always good if you have one vet at each position….I think perry Riley should be on this list or will end up on this list…the only way they cut D-hall is if somebody really step up and not just do what D-hall but do things better…jay gruden said david amerson got some work to do if he want get be the backup and get reps with the starters because the CB area is crowded with alot of talented CBs and he name chris culliver breeland and D-hall who is ahead of him now…I dont really think they just gonna get rid of him

  7. mr.moneylover - Jul 18, 2015 at 11:54 AM

    I agree with kai forbath because he dont got a strong enough leg on kickoffs the returner would be catch the ball like at the 20+ to 30 yardline why you think the eagles was getting touchdowns on us ???? #PERRYRILEYSHOULDBEONTHISLIST

    • bangkokben - Jul 18, 2015 at 12:05 PM

      Tress Way was kicking off in the 1st Eagle’s game. However, overall i agree with this sentiment.

  8. Stephfan - Jul 18, 2015 at 12:00 PM

    Why get rid of Kai? And hall? The others I can see but those two I just can’t.

    • abanig - Jul 18, 2015 at 12:18 PM

      Some people just don’t like seeing FGs go through the uprights at a 90% clip from 49 yards and in.

      • bangkokben - Jul 18, 2015 at 12:54 PM

        Actually, some people would prefer a kicker that ranks better than 20th in FG made. His three years going backward from 2014, he is 20th, 31st, and 31st. Sure you can say the offense doesn’t give him enough opportunities or maybe it’s because the coaches don’t have faith in him from certain distances. The same years the Redskins were 22nd, 23rd, and 24th in total FG made – another issue: not a full time kicker. His best year was his rookie year when he became the solution for field goals.{ “Oh, Cundiff!”} Then the last two seasons, we have had to have others taking kicks due to his leg fatigue/injury. The same time frame the Redskins were 26th, 23rd, and 4th in Total scoring. The reason to explore a new direction at kicker is that in three seasons, he has not shown the endurance to be an everyday kicker. When the margin between winning an losing is razor thin, this team cannot afford to have a game or two where it’s punter is its emergency kicker.

        • Stephfan - Jul 18, 2015 at 2:47 PM

          Add in the times he actually got to kick? How many times he got down there to kick? If a kicker barely kicks than what does that tell u

  9. mr.moneylover - Jul 18, 2015 at 12:05 PM

    If I had to choose who would make the team now between colt mccoy or kirk cousins ill go with colt mccoy heres why….you guys fail to realize colt mccoy is the only one who had some type of success in jay gruden offense and you guys fail to realize he jave more experience reading defense and right now I think colt mccoy is second on the depth chart so unless he play better in TC ill say they cut kirk cousins or try to trade him

  10. redskinsnameisheretostay - Jul 18, 2015 at 12:12 PM

    I’m only surprised Riley isn’t on the list. If he loses his starting job can he at least participate by playing special teams. Anyway I think Riley will at least retain his starting position at the beginning of the season but he may still be bubble potential.

    • Trey Gregory - Jul 19, 2015 at 9:31 PM

      I wish Riley would get cut. But we would have to have a better or at least equal replacement. I’m not so sure we do. Our ILBs worry me other than Robinson.

  11. mr.moneylover - Jul 18, 2015 at 2:19 PM

    It was still bad after that…the kickoffs are bad the returner shouldn’t be starting at the 20 a great kicker will kick for a touchback but really didnt have alot of that last year Archives

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