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Need to Know: Will all seven Redskins draft picks make the roster?

May 5, 2016, 5:06 AM EDT


Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, May 5, eight days before the Washington Redskins hold their rookie minicamp.


—The Redskins last played a game 116 days ago. It will be 130 days until they host the Steelers in their 2016 season opener.

Days until: Rookie minicamp 8; OTAs start 19; Redskins training camp starts 84

Hot topic

Last year the Redskins drafted 10 players. Out of that group, six made the initial 53-man roster. WR Evan Spencer was waived-injured, they tried to get CB Tevin Mitchel on to injured reserve but the Colts claimed him, ILB Martrell Spaight went to injured reserve, and C Austin Reiter was released and later signed to the practice squad.

This year they selected seven players. Can all seven of them make the 53-man roster?

I don’t think that we have to go into any heavy analysis on the Redskins’ first three picks. WR Josh Doctson, S Su’a Cravens and CB Kendall Fuller are all automatically on the roster just like every other player picked in the first three rounds will be around the league.

Scot McCloughan traded out of the fourth round so their next pick was DL Matt Ioannidis in the fifth round. They certainly seem to have plans for him. “In base, we’re looking at him more at nose, but he can still play the three [technique],” McCloughan said at a press conference this week. “But in sub, which we’re in a lot more than base, he can move around the line.”

Words spoken in May do not necessarily translate to a roster spot and a significant role on the defense in September. But I think it’s fair to say that Ioannidis is about a 90 percent lock to make the roster.

It will be interesting to see what happens to developmental quarterback Nate Sudfeld, taken in the sixth round. Unless he bombs completely he is likely to be employed at Redskins Park this fall. But will he be the third quarterback on the active roster or will he be on the practice squad? If he is showing some promise and looks good in preseason games the organization might not want to risk getting him through waivers to make the practice squad. But if the preseason games end and it looks like he needs a lot of work still the practice squad might be the place for him.

They had two seventh-round picks. ILB Steven Daniels joins a somewhat crowded position with Will Compton, Mason Foster, and Perry Riley vying for starting jobs, Terrance Garvin signing on as a backup who also will help in special teams, and Spaight competing for a roster spot. If Daniels can provide a spark on special teams, something needed by the team following the departures of special teams regulars like Darryl Young and Jeron Johnson, he will have a very good shot at sticking around.

There is an opening for the other seventh-round pick, RB Keith Marshall. The Redskins still haven’t filled the roster spot vacated by Alfred Morris so he will have an opportunity. But it’s hard to see the Redskins making Marshall their only option. It seems likely that a veteran will be signed to compete for the job and one or two promising undrafted players could as well. Marshall may have to fend off some competition from a few players in order to land a spot on the 53.

Looking at the big picture, while all seven have a legitimate shot at the roster I don’t think that they all will. I’ll put the over/under at 5.5.

Stat of the day

The 2015 Redskins outscored the opposition by 57 points in the first halves of their regular season games (212-155). In the second half (including overtime), however, they were outscored by 48 points (1 76-224).

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  1. abanig - May 5, 2016 at 5:35 AM

    I don’t think Daniels makes it unless he does really well plays well in training camp and does enough in the preseason to unseat Riley. Riley could still be our starter at mike ILB though, so that’s going to be tough to do.

    I think Daniels spends this season on the practice squad.

  2. colorofmyskinz - May 5, 2016 at 5:57 AM

    I take the over with 6. Daniels is the only question in my mind. If we can’t get him in the 53 I hope we can sign him to the practice squad and clear waivers. ILB is a position where people get beat up. He has series potential. He is a run stopping beast and that is what we need. Riley however, big question mark for me. Far too expensive for his contributions.

    I think with Tavin, foster, and Spaight we take our shot in Daniels and cut Riley for additional cap space.

    We need cap to keep all the good players we want to keep.

    • ET - May 5, 2016 at 11:15 AM

      Daniels and Spaight seem like pretty similar players, no? They both have potential, but it seems like Spaight has the inside track.

      Riley’s an interesting case—he’s clearly good enough to make the roster, but that $4 million salary looms large when compared to all the younger guys. He almost has to be one of the starters or in heavy rotation in order to justify his price tag. So from that perspective, Riley has a little bit of an uphill climb.

      • Mr.moneylover - May 5, 2016 at 3:30 PM

        We have our starters in mason foster and will Compton but perry Riley is expected to compete for the backup position…I’m hearing perry Riley gonna have some serious competition against martrell spaight I hear the guy has improved from last year even tho he got hurt early in the season but I don’t think redskins gonna rush to put him out there..they really want martrell spaight and Steven Daniels be they future LBs

      • bangkokben - May 5, 2016 at 4:16 PM

        I suspect the Redskins WANT Perry Riley to win the job — he’s getting paid like it’s his. Foster is getting paid like the first man up – veteran he is. The rest of the guys have ZERO experience playing inside linebacker in the NFL. The hope is they will show enough knowledge of the defense with the twos and threes during pre-season and the ability to play teams to make them legitimate FUTURE options. Sometimes the future comes sooner than expected but to pencil in Compton and Foster as starters with Spaight and Daniels as the primary back-ups IS CLEARLY NOT the current plan. Now if Foster clearly beats out Riley and the inexperienced guys look like they can step in a play, Riley MAY be gone but I’d say that is a long shot. Lastly, they could always cut him and bring him back at a reduce rate at some point between now and the start of the season — provided Riley wants to be here after such a scenario. (Isn’t he the perfect candidate to squeeze Jordan Reed’s extension under the cap this month if injury has any factor in cutting folks? But Jordan Reed even mentioned Riley as one the guys itching to get back to things in his post-extension interview.) Right now, I think Riley has a 75% chance of making the final 53.

        • Trey Gregory - May 6, 2016 at 12:09 AM

          Riley has just been so bad in the past. He seems like the kind of guy it’s best to just move on from. I know he had his moments last year but, even at his best, he’s not very good.

          I agree that with his salary either he needs to start or he’s a perfect cap casualty. I just don’t know that we have the depth or experience to do it. I too don’t have much faith in our completely inexperienced, low draft pick, ILBs. And Burton seems more like a special teams/depth guy than starter.

          I find it more intreating to think Cravens might roam around the middle more than we think. Depending what else happens at safety. Maybe Hall really pans out. Maybe Ihenacho stays healthy and regains form. Maybe Jarrett is able to return. Blackmon can fill in. We have some decent options at safety. And OLB is locked up. Cravens makes sense to move to ILB to me in certain situations. Not full time but it’s an intriguing option to me.

    • Mr.moneylover - May 5, 2016 at 3:24 PM

      Steven Daniels got to much potential to try to get put on the practice squad scot m. Said he will most likely play special teams this year…you gotta go threw the ranks to become a starter now on the redskins something we haven’t seen in years…normally it will be a plug in and play with the rookies…josh doctson might not play special teams but the rest of our guys can contribute on special teams some kind of way

      • Trey Gregory - May 6, 2016 at 12:31 AM

        I would absolutely expect Daniels to play special teams, if anything this year. But I’ve seen a few people quoting Gruden and McCloughan about these Guy’s futures. I wouldn’t put so much stock into what they’re saying. It’s PR stuff man.

        What are they supposed to say? “We drafted this guy but we don’t really expect him to make the team. We did a bad job. There’s probably a 70% chance the low draft picks don’t make the team. Duh. Just like every other year.”

        Come on man. Of course they’re going to say they’re excited and the new guys have all the potential in the world. I don’t actually know the % of 6th and 7th round picks who make rosters on average. But I don’t think it’s anywhere in the area of being locks.

  3. Jlb12300 - May 5, 2016 at 6:23 AM

    I think Marshall is a lock. With his speed and pass catching ability. He would have to screw up bad in camp not to make it. Daniels will be competing against Spaight who ever is the better run stuffer.

    • reedo3000 - May 5, 2016 at 8:30 AM

      I still find it funny everyone saying Marshall is a lock to make the lineup…Lache Seastrunk ring any bells. It does for me, vividly. I still see people on message boards talking him up, how he should be on the team. Sure, Marshall has promise but he is a 7th round pick, let’s see him play, and then make a determination.

      • Jlb12300 - May 5, 2016 at 9:10 AM

        Seastruck was a true 7th or Ufa talent. Marshall in my opinion is a 3rd better in every way

        • mtskins - May 5, 2016 at 9:22 AM

          Agree with 3000 and the others who posted that the hype train is leaving the station a bit early. Lache is a good example but Trey Williams last year springs to mind as well. Upside sounds good but there’s a long ways to go to make the 53 Man.

        • bangkokben - May 5, 2016 at 9:52 AM

          Seastrunk was a 6th drafted 186th overall is THE PERFECT comparison. The only thing Marshall has going for him is the lack of veteran presence and that can easily be fixed in August.

        • Jlb12300 - May 5, 2016 at 12:13 PM

          I don’t care when he was picked his talent level is 7th or ufa. Marshall carries the ball better ,faster, bigger, stronger and the list keeps going. Need I say more ok he can take a hit and still keep going.

        • bangkokben - May 5, 2016 at 2:37 PM

          Of course he does. That’s why he was the 22nd back taken in the draft and 242nd pick overall and Seastrunk was the 16th back taken in 2014. You see the dilemma? We should go on your word over 32 NFL teams? Look, all of us Redskin fans HOPE Marshall is the real deal but we’re skeptical when it comes to some internet poster making claims of so-and-so being a lock. Seen that movie too many times.

        • Jlb12300 - May 5, 2016 at 3:48 PM

          I understand where you’re coming from. Marshall fits good in a zone running game like Morris did. He has better hands and is faster. He has the capabilities of being the backup for Jones and Thompson. With a bigger body to help with blocking. That’s why I said I think he is a lock. Remember both Jones and Thompson went down last year.
          By the way I have been a Redskins fan since the scabs took them to the Super Bowl in 87. I have seen many of player’s in that time period come and go. The one thing that I can see the ones that make it push themselves to make it. Marshall might not be a Peterson but he can be very good backup. Something that we need and at a low cost. And you can take that to the bank.

        • Mr.moneylover - May 5, 2016 at 3:35 PM

          Seatruck never played in a pro style offense and my guess is that he didn’t pickup things fast enough he got pickup by the panthers and the cowboy’s and is currently out of the NFL…Keith Marshall has a better shot at making the team then lance seatruck

      • Trey Gregory - May 5, 2016 at 2:22 PM

        I was going to bring up Seasteunk and Williams too. I had so many people swear up and down that Williams was a lock to make the roster. They damn near swore to kill their mothers if they were wrong. Because they watched him and college and he had all this potential and blah blah blah. There was a reason he went undrafted, and this isn’t college anymore.

        It’s ridiculous to say Marshall is a lock. If he had that much potential, and an injury was the only thing hurting his stock, someone would have taken a chance on him earlier. Everyone focuses on the injury but the truth is he got healthy, and then got outplayed. It may have been by Todd Gurly but it was also by Nick Chubb: who didn’t exactly turn into a stud either.

        Keep a grasp on reality guys. There’s a guy like this every-single-year and they rarely pan out (even if they make the team like Grant and Ross). Marshall is an exciting 7th round pick but his chances of succes are still very low. There’s a reason he’s a 7th round pick and it’s not just the injury.

        • Mr.moneylover - May 5, 2016 at 2:57 PM

          A lot of teams pass on Todd girly because of his ACL injury… You can always comeback better from a ACL…I wouldn’t say he’s a lock but he has a really good chance of making the team

        • Trey Gregory - May 5, 2016 at 6:08 PM

          You can’t seriously be comparing Todd Gurly to Keith Marshall. Gurley was a first round pick, one of the highest RBs taken in years, and you even admit he would have gone higher if not for the injury. He wasn’t healthy when drafted. Marshall is and he still went in the 7th. There’s no comparison.

          I get it. You’re a fan. You sound exactly like every Trey Williams and Lache Seastrunk fan. Believe me, I watched more of Seastrunk than you ever have. You don’t need to go down the list of reasons. I understand them all. Williams fans had lists of reasons why he would make the team too. That’s kind of the point. You can say whatever you want, but he was taken in the 7th for a reason.

          Scot didn’t feel strong enough to take him in the 4th, 5th, or 6th. Neither did any other team. And, statistically speaking, you’re foolish if you think a 7th round pick is a lock to make the roster. And even if he does, it’s a long shot he ever even sees the field outside the preseason. That’s just reality man. Sorry if you can’t accept it.

        • Mr.moneylover - May 5, 2016 at 3:08 PM

          Anytime you have ACL injury a lot of teams will be scared to Draft that player…but Keith Marshall is fully healthy now and should be ready to compete right away lucky for him he won’t be our starter so the pressure is not on him…Todd girly injury was so bad he wasn’t able to do nothing for awhile and to see Keith Marshall do what he did in the combine I believe that guy is ready to play he got a really good chance to make the team unless one of those undrafted guys wow the coaches…Chris Thompson competition is mack brown and against the undrafted free agents…this training camp should be very fun to watch so much competition at key spots

        • Mr.moneylover - May 5, 2016 at 3:17 PM

          Trey Williams was a undrafted free agent and he still needed work on pass blocking…they did keep him its not the redskins fault the patriots stole him off they practice squad…what’s unique about Keith Marshall he’s short but pack muscles to break tackles he’s the kind of running back redskins never had…scot m. Said he refused to pass on Keith Marshall he was the best player available and was surprise he was still available late in the 7th round….i don’t blame jay gruden saying we want and hoping Keith Marshall can be the lighting to matt jones

    • Skulb - May 5, 2016 at 10:43 AM

      Premature things are not good. Ask my wife.

  4. ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© - May 5, 2016 at 7:33 AM

    Mark Billock put up a post about Ioannidis.

    Contrary to some of the common taters here, Bullock says he is a good fit for NT in our 1-gap system.

    While teams love defensive linemen who can penetrate and get into the backfield, they have to be able to withstand combination blocks and not give up ground. Ioannidis is a stout run defender with a lot of strength to hold off multiple blockers and hold his position. That’s exactly what you need from a nose tackle in the run game.

    • Skulb - May 5, 2016 at 10:46 AM

      I officially gave up trying to understand our defensive front today when Joe Barry said “there’s no difference between a 1, a 3 and a 5 technique.” My new position is that I believe quite strongly that we might have 11 players on the field on defense, and that a majority of them will be wearing red hats.

      • ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© - May 5, 2016 at 10:50 AM

        we might have 11 players on the field on defense, and that a majority of them will be wearing red hats

        So say we all!

      • bangkokben - May 5, 2016 at 11:35 AM

        I with you on your assessment. It also seems like a lot of “nothing to see here” and “Robert is doing a great job.” Cooley basically said after replaying those comments. That’s all well and good buy you need a guy to play the zero technique and bull rush the center in the backfield on occasion. For now, lets hope they have a handle on it.

        • Skulb - May 5, 2016 at 12:27 PM

          Fat guys up front and skinny guys in the back. Anything beyond that at this point I’ll leave to Barry. He gets paid to figure it out and I don’t.

      • Trey Gregory - May 5, 2016 at 2:30 PM

        See, you say that, but look at who Seattle took in the second round. To me, that’s a damn DT. 3-4 or 4-3. I get all the schematic and gap differences. But a mountain of a man still has value in the middle of that line. Even in a 1 gap scheme. Even in nickel. If one guy 2 gaps, that’s one less blocker to stop the pass rush. It’s a positive exchange of blockers to rushers for the defense.

        I think it’s interesting and exciting to see what a 2016 Scot McCloughan 3-4 defense looks like. He’s obviously focusing on speed and the pass. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t still at least 1 spot, all 3 downs, for a giant DT in the middle.

        That’s no knock on Ioannidis either. He seems about as good of a 5th round DT as you could reasonably hope for. But I’m going to need to see how some of this works before I completely buy in. The rest is just hope.

      • Mr.moneylover - May 5, 2016 at 3:45 PM

        A few of the teams we faced last year said they had trouble figuring out Joe Barry defense its very exotic because one moment you will see will blackmon lineup playing CB then the next play you will him play safety its hard to figure what’s coming at you…the more guys you have to play multiple positions the better the defense will be…kyshoen Jarrett was the only guy who played 2 positions last season now they got multiple guys who can do that

        • Skulb - May 5, 2016 at 5:52 PM

          This is a relief to hear. My utter failure in figuring out what we’re doing had me feeling stupid a lot of the time last year, and Barry made me feel stupid again this morning. Nice to know I’m not supposed to understand it though. Makes it a bit less annoying when I don’t.

        • Trey Gregory - May 5, 2016 at 6:16 PM

          Who said that? Can I get a link? Because if anything I found it too basic.

          And I’m not a Barry hater at all. I get what he was trying to do. But I didn’t think he used the versatility of his players nearly enough. Breeland and Culliver excel in bump and run but he played them off. I get it, keep the offense in front of you, play it safe, and avoid the big play. But teams caught a lot of first downs off slants right at the marker because our corners were behind it.

          I get why he didn’t blitz more. Again, playing it safe. But he didn’t run a lot of stunts or mix personnel that I noticed. There were 100 articles criticizing how his defense was too stiff; how he didn’t take enough chances; how he stuck to a philosophy for what you do if you have the perfect players, but he didn’t adapt to his players. But I don’t ever remember hearing Joe Barry was versitile or that he confused teams. I would love to read that.

        • Mr.moneylover - May 5, 2016 at 7:42 PM

          Eli manning said it after we beat them at FedEx last year had trouble calling audibles because he didn’t know what we was doing and what was coming…at first our defense was bad because guys like Trent Murphy was starting while Preston smith was on the bench then we had Trent Robinson playing safety and he got caught out of position multiple times…this year we got better talent looking to add better depth

        • Trey Gregory - May 5, 2016 at 8:31 PM

          Okay. That’s fair. The defense seemed to improve later in the season. No doubt Smith’s emergence had something to do with that. I think Kerrigan getting healthy helped a lot as well. Then Blackmon and Foster coming in and getting comfortable. The emergence of Jarrett. I know Barry started blitzing a little more toward the end of the season (unless I’m mistaken).

          Just, other than the blitzes, I didn’t personally notice many changes. Sometimes seasons start to blur if it’s been a little while though. That’s an interesting comment from Eli. I’ll have to try and find it.

          But I think, to your point, Barry didn’t have all the proper personnel. Which is why so many of us are excited for some of these new guys like Cravens. Should be interesting.

  5. kenlinkins - May 5, 2016 at 8:39 AM

    Rich; Does ILB Robinson leaving help Riley make the 53 man roster this year? IMO Riley always seems to look great at OTA’s in shorts and makes a great play or two in the Preseason but just doesn’t seem to stay “tuned in” all season. With a $4 million Cap Savings on his contract and a few guys pushing him who would kill to make the final roster, does Robinson leaving work in Riley’s favor? Could the New “Super SS” / Super- Star ILB” position drafted this year replace Riley?

    • Rich Tandler - May 5, 2016 at 9:13 AM

      Well, sure it does because there is less veteran competition. I’m not sure where Riley stands, but I’m making a 53-man roster tomorrow and he’s going to be on it. He’s just a guy but there is no obvious upgrade right now. And, no, Cravens will not push Riley off the roster. Cravens might wander into ILB on occasion but just in nickel situations.

  6. smotion55 - May 5, 2016 at 9:36 AM

    I would take the bet on over and except for the injury factor it would be a no brainer. It is time for new blood and Riley does not disengage blocks and is as big a disability in coverage as Danials or play consistent enough to pay him his salary. By now he should be more instinctive then reactive. Who signed him to this contract anyway. If it was Bruce then he is gone.
    Marshall if he stays healthy should make the team by default. If the D-Line in the draft wasn’t so deep this year Ioannidis would have gone earlier, just out of need . Bare minimum he plays equal to pot roast and will show more desire for sure. The 1st three should play quite a bit this year.

  7. Mr.moneylover - May 5, 2016 at 2:54 PM

    They like Steven Daniels potential he will start his career off playing special teams scot m. Said….scot m. Also said they hoping Keith Marshall can be the backup to matt Jones and jay gruden said they willing to work with him to give him a chance to backup matt Jones but they got some really good backup options who became undrafted free agents Archives

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