It has been a great offseason so far for the 4-12 Washington Redskins. Certainly one with a plethora of moves that the team was in dire need of. No super star really, but that is not what Washington needed at the end of the day anyway.
The Redskins go back to camp with their top players still intact on the offensive side. RB Alfred Morris will certainly take the bulk of the carries once again. He took 66% of the Redskins carries last season and he looks on his way to doing the same this year. Healthy and ready, the Pierre Garcon and Desean Jackson wide receiver duo seems ready for a season to show what they can do, but they are still wondering who will end up throwing the ball to them. QB Robert Griffin III will get a shot at keeping his starting job if he is healthy but Kirk Cousins is certainly not far behind him, and even Colt Mccoy got his shot to play multiple games last year.
Coach Jay Gruden has a long way to go. He will certainly be on the hot seat if the Redskins don’t start the season off the right way. His coaching ways aren’t bad, and he has a good game plan for the Redskins, but without results, anybodies head could be on the chopping block. A 4-12 result last season didn’t help his cause, specially without any history to back his claim for being a head coach.
The offseason moves certainly bring some hope to this mess of a team though. Hope, not solutions, but hope. The offensive line was certainly a mess for Washington. One of the biggest reasons by both RG3 and Cousins dealt with multiple injuries and played 9 and 6 games respectively. Note that Mccoy played in 5 games as well. So the OL was definitely a need and right away the Redskins bring in Brandon Scherff with the 5th overall selection in the draft and move 2nd year guard Spencer Long to the right side to make sure that side is covered. None have actually started a single NFL game before but they have both showed much promise, specially rookie Scherff. With Kory Lichtensteiger a lock at center, this seems to be a talented line with lots of promise, but they need the payoff soon.
And finally the defensive side. Defensively the Redskins were a mess. They allowed the third most points per game in the NFL and a total of 357 ypg. Moreover, they were the highest penalized team with 144 penalties. 14 more than the next worse and more than DOUBLE the Seahawks (lowest penalized team). So when I say they were a mess, I mean it. The addition of Chris Culliver at cornerback might help joined with Dashon Goldson but it is hard to imagine what this team can do, with a new defensive system, new staff, and 5 new starters on this side of the ball. It will certainly be up to the coaches to get it all together and make sure the Redskins machine runs smoothly.
If the Redskins can get past their quarterback problems, their coaching question marks, their gameplan concerns, and most certainly their off field issues (as in the many people calling for them to change their name), then maybe the Redskins can improve from their 4-12 record. With a weapon like RG3 it isn’t hard to imagine that offense functioning like a well oiled machine. I certainly can see that happen if RG3 stays healthy. The Redskins will have to trust him one more time at the very least if they want this season to be a success in one of the toughest divisions in football.