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Need to Know: Five bold 2015 Redskins predictions

Sep 12, 2015, 5:03 AM EDT

Preston Smith vs. Browns

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, September 12, one day before the Washington Redskins open their season against the Miami Dolphins.

Five bold predictions about the 2015 Redskins

Note: These may contradict some other things I have predicted in other posts because I wasn’t in “bold” mode at the time. By the nature of “bold” the chances of these things happening are slim but I do see them as in the realm of possibility.

The Redskins will start the season 3-0—They will be underdogs against the Dolphins and Giants and perhaps a pick ‘em at home against the Rams. But while Miami and St. Louis have tough defenses neither has an offense that will scare you. The Giants are the other side of the coin, with a potentially powerful offense and a suspect defense. If the Redskins manage to play clean football and avoid dumb penalties and turnovers, they have a punchers chance in all three games.

Alfred Morris will rush for 700 yards—I’m not completely convinced that Morris will be nearly as effective behind power blocking as he was behind the zone-blocking scheme. He will still start all 16 games but if he is spinning his wheels, Gruden will start to sub in Matt Jones and maybe even Chris Thompson earlier and more often. The team is going to rely too much on the running game to keep giving the ball to an ineffective runner.

Kirk Cousins will start all 16 games—If he can beat the turnover problems that plagued him last year there could be no reason to turn to either Colt McCoy or Robert Griffin III. Outside of the interceptions his numbers projected over a 16-game season were very good, as in top 10 in many major stat categories good. He never missed a game due to injury and that combined with his ability to avoid getting hit in the pocket he should stay healthy enough to go the distance.

The Redskins special teams won’t improve much if at all—You don’t essentially rip special teams players and leaders like Niles Paul, Adam Hayward, and Logan Paulsen out of the lineup for the season and even break even in performance, much less improve. Maybe young players like Kyshoen Jarrett and Martrell Spaight can pick up the slack and I think Jamison Crowder could provide some long-missing excitement in the return game. But missing the veteran stalwarts they will be doing well to tread water from their poor performance in 2014.

Preston Smith will be the defensive rookie of the year—This is the longest shot on the board here but it could happen. For one thing, he plays a position that generates stats in the form of sacks so that gives him a chance. Assuming he starts and/or gets up to playing 70 percent or more of the snaps, he could benefit from the added attention that Ryan Kerrigan will get. If he can get up to 10 that might be enough to earn the rookie honors if nobody else blows up.

What are your bold 2015 predictions? Let me know in the comments!

Timeline

Today’s schedule: No availability

—It’s been 258 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be 1 day until they play the Dolphins at FedEx Field.

Days until: Rams @ Redskins 8; Redskins @ Giants Thursday night 12; Eagles @ Redskins 22

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In case you missed it

  1. troylok - Sep 12, 2015 at 7:44 AM

    Okay, as long as we playing make-believe, here is my five:

    -Jordan Reid finally overcomes the injury bug and leads the league in receptions by a tight end.
    -Keenan Robinson leads the league in tackles.
    -Matt Jones leads the team in touchdowns.
    -Kirk Cousins finishes the season with four rushing touchdowns.
    -Desean Jackson leads the league in yards per reception.

    • darcrequiem - Sep 12, 2015 at 8:33 AM

      Troylok, Desean Jackson leading the league in yards per reception isn’t a bold prediction.

      • ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© - Sep 12, 2015 at 11:16 AM

        I think that was his trick prediction. But it’s day -1 of the season, I am all for optimism!
        !!!!!!
        ~

      • troylok - Sep 13, 2015 at 7:47 AM

        Yeah, but come on. Someone is going to remember this list and if I don’t have at least one safe bet then I will be called an even bigger fool than I already am. HTTR. It all begins today.

  2. colorofmyskinz - Sep 12, 2015 at 7:54 AM

    Nice bold predictions Rich!!

    Here are mine:

    – cousins throws less than 16 INTs this year over 16 games. The league average is 17. QBs can be very effective throwing just one per game. Cousins will get a contract extension and show top 10 QB stats this year.

    – Matt Jones blows out Alfred Morrris stats this year. Matt takes lead running roll, And MORRIS gets a low ball offer on a contract extension.

    – Trent Murphy steps up an shows us why we picked him first last year. Our defense becomes top 5 in the NFL.

    – crowder reminds us of a player names Mike Nelms. Becomes s serious threat and delivers a minimum of 3 returns for TD greater than 70 yards. Becomes starting slot receiver over roberts and grant.

    – we finish 10 & 6 or better and secure a playoff spot.

    There are many possibilities now that we have a starting QB that is somewhat stable.

  3. jim - Sep 12, 2015 at 8:09 AM

    The Redskins have a new owner, and Jack Kent Cooke is back. That’s right people, although his JKC Foundation has done many great things, he couldn’t take it anymore, seeing the Redskins turn into the “butt end” of every NFL joke, while the Patriots “cheat” their way to 4 Super Bowls (bc where there is smoke, there is fire, always have been, so let’s call this spade a spade with the Patriots – and who can blame them, they won 4 SBs, so who really has the last laugh here!)
    JKC admitted to not doing the transition to a new owner well, and stated one game back in the 70’s, a kid with his father parked in his parking space at RKF, and JKC told them it was OK, but please don’t park here again, because it was for the owner of the Washington Redskins, well the young kid said to his dad, “who’s the Washington Redskins?”, and the dad answered, “only the greatest NFL Football Team in America”, and the kid thought to himself, “yeah right, what a bunch of losers, is all I know”, and then Dan Snyder and his dad proceeded into the football game…..UGH, how ironic, poor Danny boy doesn’t know crap about running a football team, and 20yrs later, man I never thought I would see the Redskins fall so far and turn into a laughing stock of the NFL…..well, congratulations Danny boy, you did it, you turned us into the a laughing stock, and don’t ever say, “you are the greatest Redskin fan”, because no “greatest Redskins fan” would EVER have signed Bruce Smith, Jeff George, and Dion Sanders…..and most importantly, let Nov Turner go, after he took us to 3 Games from the Super Bowl…..who and what the hell do you honestly think you were doing? Absolutely NOTHING, but capping on one of the great franchise in the NFL.

    Here is my wish, you put the team up for sale and all the fans buy the Redskins, just like how they own the Green Bay Packers……let the fans own the Redskins and watch us turn it around. # enough Snyder!

    • colorofmyskinz - Sep 12, 2015 at 9:56 AM

      That would be the best possible outcome. Because we pretty much know that this idiot SNYDER will do something else to harm this team like fire his 8th coach in 16 seasons. He will probably fire SCOT too because of how gruden and SCOT teamed up on his poor draft decision.

      SNYDER is in constant scramble to cover up his foul decisions. He by far has been the single worst change for our team in the history of our team.

      So here is the question:
      – how much did SNYDER get paid by Addidis for the “all in for game 1” campaign of RGIII. The campaign that killed RGIII and the Shanahans?

      RGIII should have NEVER started that season against the Eagles. It placed him at risk and was probably the one decision that will mark the death of his career.

      So how much did SNYDER make with that poor decision that forced the hand of the GM and HC?

      • troylok - Sep 13, 2015 at 7:49 AM

        That’s an interesting question. Does Snyder’s marketing firm represent players on the Redskins? To me, that would seem like a conflict of interest – especially from the perspective of the players who compete for the best player to be one the field. Standing a chance to make money from the play of a specific player would definitely influence those decisions on who plays.

        • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 13, 2015 at 8:49 AM

          Dan doesn’t even have that Marketing Firm and hasn’t since 2000. Snyder Communications was sold to a French company back in 2000. Most of his ventures now are involved in production companies (i.e Tom Cruise affiliate), sports radio, and diners.

          This is just another example of making assumptions about Snyder’s involvement with players getting on the field.

      • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 13, 2015 at 8:52 AM

        He made nothing off Addidis or any other endorsements RG3 was involved. Why your guys so much into the soap opera bs. You just making junk up as you go and its really pathetic but if the skirt fits…

    • colorofmyskinz - Sep 12, 2015 at 10:02 AM

      I desperately hope for success this year without RGIII, just to stick it to SNYDER and prove to him how pathetically wrong he has been with all of his decisions. what I love about starting cousins for the year is that his success will be the karma for Snyders foul decisions. Redskins fans win while SNYDER loses. That i LOVE!!

    • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 12, 2015 at 1:20 PM

      “while the Patriots “cheat” their way to 4 Super Bowls”

      Give me a break! As much as I hate the Pats, they have been a clear elite team for far too long to suggest they cheat their way to SBs. More Sultry Soap Opera Narratives. Some of you fans must be wearing skirts.

    • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 12, 2015 at 1:27 PM

      “.and most importantly, let Nov Turner go”

      Norv Turner was not an issue releasing. It was the firing of Marty Schottenheimer and hiring of Steve Spurrier that haunts this organization to this very day. Marty had great staff around him as well that could have built a dynasty here.

      • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 12, 2015 at 1:35 PM

        Look at what Marty was putting in place while he was here…

        https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/dc-sports-bog/wp/2014/02/03/when-john-schneider-was-with-the-redskins/

      • hk2000 - Sep 13, 2015 at 1:02 AM

        Don’t forget Vinny- THE WORST THING THAT EVER HAPPENED TO THE REDSKINS SINCE 1934, HIRING GRUDEN IS THE SECOND WORST.

        • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 13, 2015 at 8:37 AM

          Yeah, Vinny is key part of that article from the link I provided. Marty fired his arse to hire Schneider only to have Snyder later fire Marty and rehire Vinny. That’s possibly the biggest gaff among many gaffs Snyder has made as an owner. That is Snyder’s crux of his issues to this day as owner. It’s go nothing to do with getting involved in football players on the field and forcing coaches to start this guy or that guy BS. The man has been failed in the past by his Front Office hires.

  4. cowboyhater - Sep 12, 2015 at 8:33 AM

    Ok…I’m going to be the realist debbie downer here….

    = Kirk will not make it through the season due to the Patrick Ramsey effect which will create a ton of int’s
    = Our D will yield the highest passing yards and td]s against, and still rank in the middle due to our front 7
    = Morris will have a good season because our line is more suited to the run game but Jones will compliment
    = Our ST will once again be one of the worst in the league and Forbath will show why he shouldn’t be in the NFL
    = The WR’s will be injury prone all year
    = RG3 will start the last 3 games of the year with great stats, and the coaches will have a decision to make
    = Gruden will be fired and Callahan will take over as HC at the end of the year.
    = Final record….. 4-12

    See you next year!!

  5. hail74 - Sep 12, 2015 at 9:23 AM

    -The offense puts up top 10 yardage numbers but red zone struggles continue.
    -Both Garçon and Jackson go over 1000yds receiving
    -Kirk looks good enough for us to hold out hope he’s the guy
    -The defense is average at best
    -Special teams are still a nightmare
    -We go 6-10, 3-3 in the division with a sweep of the Giants.

    • hail74 - Sep 12, 2015 at 9:24 AM

      Oh and people stop calling for Grudens head. The boldest prediction of all.

  6. Anthony McNabb - Sep 12, 2015 at 9:43 AM

    I dont think kirk cousins will have a good year we will win maybe a couple of games more than last year maybe. get rid of coach who was suppose to fix rg3 thats why he was brought in and draft or bring in new qb .fire jay gruden. His offense in concy never made it out of first rd of playoffs .

  7. gonavybeatarmy - Sep 12, 2015 at 9:50 AM

    *Under intense media scrutiny, Bruce Allen will finally admit that he’s one of the Baldwin brothers, not the brother of George Allen Jr. and son of George Allen, Sr., and that Alec is his favorite brother.
    *In week two, while practicing the 2012 version of the read option from the pistol formation with his father during pre-game warm-ups at Fed Ex Field, Griffin will finally again demonstrate his 4.41 speed but forget to slide. He’ll crash into Jeff Fisher, sustain an injury and the Skins will be on the hook for $16.1 million in 2016.
    *During pre-game in Atlanta, Kyle Shanahan will spot Snyderman on the sideline and throw a football at him, knocking him to the ground. Snyderman will sustain a concussion and Judge Berman will rule that owners too must go through the full concussion protocol. The team, with Snyderman’s negative energy away from the organization, will then go on an extended winning run.
    *Bob Costas will finally admit on Sunday Night Football that he really doesn’t give a crap about Native Americans aka Indians and has been an opportunist using the name as an issue to garner favor with perpetually offended white people and his media overlords.
    *With Snyderman still in the league’s concussion protocol, the Skins will win the NFC Championship and qualify for Super Bowl 50. When rumors begin that the league may clear Snyderman for the Super Bowl, Desean Jackson, at the urging of McCloughan and Gruden, will start flashing Gang signs at Media Day to his “friends”, who will make sure that Snyderman isn’t cleared by the league in time for the big game. Skins will win Super Bowl 50 by a score of 28-27 over Andrew Luck and the Colts, validating the trade for Griffin and drafting of Cousins in 2012.

    • squawonthewarpath - Sep 12, 2015 at 10:26 AM

      LOL GoNavy….Love it!!!

    • skinsgame - Sep 12, 2015 at 10:48 AM

      HA!

    • ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© - Sep 12, 2015 at 11:17 AM

      I support all of this.

      HTTR!
      ~

  8. born2hail - Sep 12, 2015 at 10:07 AM

    Nice Bold predictions Rich and if your Cousins starting all sixteen and Preston Smith gets to double digit sacks, then I predict that the Redskins finish 9-7, battling for a Wilcard spot!

  9. mvereen85 - Sep 12, 2015 at 10:21 AM

    Nice predictions!

    Here are mine, I’ve been bitten by optimism bug:

    Kirk Cousins has a strong season performance and garners MVP consideration

    Joe Barry coaches the Defense to a top 10 finish

  10. Capital Defense - Sep 12, 2015 at 11:20 AM

    How can you miss Hayward when he never played?

    Spaight will be a special teams monster, Adam who?

    Preston Smith will be starting by week 8, still a lot to learn but he is going to be a great one if his health doesn’t get inn the way. It seems every time we get a a promising young player he ends up derailed because of injury.

    Pierre Garcon will be traded before the trade deadline for a 4th round pick.

    • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 12, 2015 at 2:15 PM

      The Garcon trade may be beyond bold considering I don’t see any team offering a 4th round pick for a WR with declining performance that is about to turn 30.

    • goback2rfk - Sep 12, 2015 at 4:04 PM

      MUaaHHAHA! Love these bold bull s**t predictions!! Roflvcopetd!

  11. berniebernard666 - Sep 12, 2015 at 11:26 AM

    I think its Bold to predict the truth because people don’t want to hear it. But Griffin is Through. Don’t know if he gets in for a game or 2 but he is through. Won’t be back. Scott M has already made up his mind that they need to draft a QB next year. Scott went with the 3 they had and nothing but turmoil has ensued here in the offseason and preseason. Scott will get tired of this crap and dump the drama King. Period.

    Cousins is NOT the source of quarterback problems on this team. Griffin is and THAT is the truth. Hurts doesn’t it.

    • bangkokben - Sep 12, 2015 at 12:51 PM

      Tell me how restating what can be heard on every sports radio station and tv channel is bold or that you are referencing a recently demoted back-up QB a prediction? Unless you’re deaf and have no access to television, this does not merit the qualifications.

    • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 12, 2015 at 1:48 PM

      You’re not thinking football and rarely do. You only made this comment to add to hate on one guy. Assuming you even know what Scot is thinking suggest you’re are delusional.

  12. goback2rfk - Sep 12, 2015 at 11:40 AM

    Wow those are some bold statements. Should be titled “Bold but probably Bullsh*t
    If Preston Smith is defensive rookie of the year I will eat my shorts.

  13. bangkokben - Sep 12, 2015 at 12:59 PM

    Andre Roberts will lead the team in receptions.
    The Redskins will improve on their sack total from last year by ten but will have no one with double digits.
    The defense will score two TDs this season; special teams none.
    The team will have a new placekicker after the bye week.
    Either the Cowboys or the Eagles will fail miserably and replace the ‘skins in the NFC East cellar.
    The Redskins will still have a mathematical chance for a playoff spot on Christmas day.

    • goback2rfk - Sep 12, 2015 at 3:59 PM

      MuaAHaha! Roflcopters!

  14. nealc53 - Sep 12, 2015 at 1:10 PM

    19 and 0 SUPERBOWL LOL

  15. Will - Sep 12, 2015 at 1:54 PM

    The skins go 0 and 4 then Gruden is under pressure so he bucks again and starts McCoy and gets to 0 and 6. The GM pulls him a side and forces Griffin into the line up. They go 9 and 7 to finish the year. Gruden is fired and we some how get Tony Dungee to take the he job.

  16. redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 12, 2015 at 2:03 PM

    Following Rich’s approach to bold meaning…
    “By the nature of “bold” the chances of these things happening are slim but I do see them as in the realm of possibility.”

    –Scot sticks to his guns and doesn’t give up on RG3 as he stated publicly. Matt Cavanaugh is given the opportunity to develop RG3 the right way, behind the scenes, and as a backup role while Cousins maintains the starting position for season. RG3 free from injury and media distraction improves his pocket pass presence. RG3 keeps his option year while Cousins is traded at the end of season for a 3rd round pick.

    –Schreff delights all with this surprise performances at right guard against staunch opponents. Gives up only 3 sacks for the season.

    –Ryan Grant leads he team in receptions and touchdowns.

    –Redskins near a .500 record of 7-9

    • goback2rfk - Sep 12, 2015 at 4:03 PM

      RG3 is done developing. The NFL does not give you 10 years to learn how to pass. This is year 4 if you aint got it by now chances are you wont. RG3 needs to get back to using his legs like Shanahan commented on. RG3 is useless without the ability to move. RG3 better getting moving or his career is over. He is already going down as one of the biggest draft busts in NFL history as the Redskins sacrificed the Kings Ransom to acquire the superstar out of Baylor Robert Griffin III. Personally, I wanted Luck but I still thought picking RG3 was the right move back in 2012. The Skins QB’s had sucked for so long it looked like we had to take Rob.
      I hope he gets another chance somewhere else. R.I.P. RG3

      • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 12, 2015 at 4:40 PM

        I’m not sure what 10 years has to do with what is actually 3 years of development. Year 4 is not yet complete. I see Matt and Scot as the final life-line in working out a career here for RG3. A BOLD life-line at that. Hell, Aaron Rogers was a questionable commodity coming into his 4th season when he first took over as the starter. This is why spending time in backup role and out of the spotlight can be tremendously beneficial to any young QB. I really feel now it was what RG3 really needed. His past injuries have further put RG3 chances in having a career in serious doubt. Cousins spending a substantial part of his career as the backup for this team could have been a big part of his apparent development.

        There was a time when rookie contracts skyrocketed and the business side of the game forced players on the field sooner with less time for development. However the CBA brought along rookie caps that really takes away the need to rush young talented and promising players on the field prematurely.

        If I could erase 2012 and have RG3 develop on the bench then I would. The team could then have taken their time intermixing and refining the read option with a pro set offense that works best for him.

        However, my odds like yours are heavy going the other direction where RG3 would be better served moving on to another team.. I agree that RG3 needs an offense that better suits his type of mobility and skill set. This was the big reason why Gruden was such a poor hire.

        He most likely will become that big bust so many fans have been hoping for here. However, who’s fault is this really? You can point to probably 10 factors why this organization failed RG3 and the fans where you may have a few issues you can pass the blame on RG3. The biggest fault of RG3? not knowing when to get down and STAY down.

        • goback2rfk - Sep 12, 2015 at 5:03 PM

          Not being able to get down is a big problem with Rob and his sliding is the worst slide I have ever seen in my life. Every time he tries to slide it looks like his ACL is gunna blow.

        • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 12, 2015 at 5:35 PM

          Yes indeed, the most awkward slide I’ve ever seen. He looks like how a uncoordinated 7′ center when trying to get down

  17. nflinsider711 - Sep 12, 2015 at 2:24 PM

    Kirk and Colt get killed week 1 by Donkey Kong Suh and Wake.

    Darrel Young starts Week 2, Antwan Randle-El serves as the backup and RG3 is 3rd string.

    Skins go 0-16.

    Gruden is fired

    RG3 is traded to Browns for a 6th rounder.

  18. kenlinkins - Sep 12, 2015 at 2:51 PM

    1. The Redskins will start off 8-2 before falling off a cliff and ending up 9-7.
    2. RG3 will start three games for the Redskins this year (all in the 2nd half of the season and win only one).
    3. Morris will lose his starting job to Matt Jones some time after game 4, but still resign with the Redskins for 2016.
    4. Hatcher will get off to a very slow start in 2015 and placed on I/R to allow a young PS LB to play on Special Teams.
    5. HC Gruden will be in the new GM’s dog house after throwing players under the bus after losing 3 in a row late in the season (even thou Gruden made some bone headed coaching calls in the first two loses).
    Bonus: Do not miss the first 30 minutes of the season as this time frame will set the tune for the whole season. Just how much improvement the Redskins made this off season will show up early.

    • goback2rfk - Sep 12, 2015 at 3:59 PM

      AHAHAHAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!#@%!@#%

      Bold Predictions!!

  19. redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 12, 2015 at 3:07 PM

    Ken, predicting an injury? i don’t know about that man. That’s something I wouldn’t want do on another player even if it was Tom Brady.

    • kenlinkins - Sep 12, 2015 at 4:27 PM

      Not really, Hatcher has been around and I am sure they can find something to I/R him with after a bad start. It will be a way to just get him off the roster without cutting him and hearing about how many Cap money he cost.

  20. warpath1 - Sep 12, 2015 at 3:41 PM

    Sold Rich!!! I’ll take all five!!! HTTR

  21. Capital Defense - Sep 12, 2015 at 5:41 PM

    Houston Bates will be signed off the practice squad to the active roster and will have 3 sacks against the Dolphins.

    • goback2rfk - Sep 12, 2015 at 6:02 PM

      Houston Bates is damn good. I was surprised he did not make the team. It was close but I like Bates. He will be a good player. Good move bumping him up. Nice work.

      • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 12, 2015 at 6:17 PM

        I think Jeffcoat is better a this point in his career. Since the team cut Kearse instead of Jeffcoat, it most likely indicates that once Jeffcoat returns, Bates will just be waived again and added back to the PS.

        Maybe Bates will get his chance in the game to change the coaches opinion. I however don’t think he is ready to be a regular participant as an outside linebacker.

  22. Johnny B. - Sep 12, 2015 at 9:09 PM

    1 we will have a top 5 defense #1 against the run.
    2 Cousins will be the starter all year +2 playoff games.
    3 Alf will break 1500 yards and earn a big paycheck.
    4 Murphy will step up and get 8 to 10 sacks.
    5 We will all wake up and realize it was all a dream

  23. hk2000 - Sep 12, 2015 at 11:26 PM

    All your predictions are conditional and you pretty much have a built in out in all of them.

    I predict All 3 QBs will start games, I predict Gruden will not finish the season in the same role he started, he’ll either be fired mid season, or be stripped of play calling- I.E. Zorn 2.0. And I predict the the Redskins will have the first pick in 2016 draft. Sorry!!

    • hail74 - Sep 13, 2015 at 3:52 AM

      Gruden doesn’t do the play calling

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