YOOOAdrian’s 2010 NFL Preview- Washington Redskins

Washington is the official retirement home of the NFL.  At least Washington fans will enjoy 16 weeks worth of old-timer games.  Just look at the running back position; Clinton Portis, Larry Johnson and Willie Parker.  If this were 5 years ago, this trio would go down as one of the best group of running backs in NFL history.  And then there’s the unpredictable saga of Albert Haynesworth.  Haynesworth, who looks like a fatter version of Greg Oden can’t even pass a physical test.  Daniel Snyder, you may have made the worst free-agent signing in the history of the NFL last off-season.  Snyder did bring in head coach Mike Shanahan, and they may be the best move he’s ever made.

 Quarterbacks

Donovan McNabb- 267/443  60.3%  3.553 yds  22 td  10 int  92.9 rat

After 11 years in Philadelphia, the Eagles parted ways and traded McNabb (within the division) to Washington.  Statistically, McNabb had his best season as a pro last season, besides his 2004 Super Bowl season.

(Donovan McNabb)

McNabb is a solid fit within Shanahan’s offensive scheme.  Shanahan likes to move the pocket and get him into space.  That’s what McNabb does best.  Grant it, McNabb isn’t the scrambler he once was.  At 33, he’s still a good enough scrambles to escape on coming rushers and make plays. 

Others- Rex Grossman, Colt Brennan

Grossman hasn’t started since he started at quarterback for the Bears in Super Bowl XLI.  He has a solid arm, but makes too many bad decisions.

GRADE- 7.75

 

Running Backs

            Clinton Portis- 124 car  494 yds  4.0 avg  9 rec  57 yds  1 td

Mike Shanahan’s system requires his running backs to cut-once, and move laterally.  Portis thrived with Shanahan in his 2 years in Denver.  He accumulated 3,099 yards and 29 touchdowns. 

(Clinton Portis)

These days Portis is more of a pounder inside.  Although he’s only 28, his body has taken a heavy toll over recent years being used so frequently in Joe Gibb’s and Jim Zorn’s systems.

Larry Johnson- 178 car  581 yds  3.3 avg 0 td  3 rec  4 yds

Johnson hasn’t been the same since he signed his lucrative deal in Kansas City.  He doesn’t have the breakaway speed anymore, and he doesn’t have good hands out of the backfield.

Others- Willie Parker, Mike Sellers

“Fast” Willie Parker is just “Average Speed” Willie Parker these days.

Sellers is a former Pro-Bowler who didn’t have his best season last year.

GRADE- 7.75

Receivers

Santana Moss- 70 rec  902 yds  12.9 avg  3 td

Moss is another player on offense who seems to have lost a step.  His 12.9 average was the lowest of his career.  He’s still quick in and out of his cuts.

Devin Thomas- 25 rec  325 yds  13.0 avg  3 td

The Redskins drafted 2 wide receivers in the 2nd round of the 2008 NFL Draft (Thomas and Malcolm Kelly).  Out of the two, Thomas looks like the guy who may breakout.  He’s gifted athletically with a big frame and big sure hands.  Thomas uses his frame to break out of tackles.

(Devin Thomas)

Malcolm Kelly- 25 rec  347 yds  13.9 avg  0 td

Kelly at 6’4 looks like he could be a solid red-zone option.

Chris Cooley- 29 rec  332 yds  11.4 avg  2 td

Cooley is coming off a broken leg.  If he comes back healthy, Cooley is savvy and has good hands.

Others- Fred Davis, Bobby Wade

With Cooley out of the lineup for most of the year, Davis broke out.  He has natural receiving ability for a tight-end.

Wade is a receiver who was brought in case Kelly or Thomas falter.

GRADE- 7.25

Offensive Line

LT- Jammal Brown

Washington desperately needed to address the offensive line, especially after left tackle Chris Samuels retired.  The Redskins drafted tackle Trent Williams 4th overall, and got former Saint and Pro-Bowler Jammal Brown.  Brown missed all of last season with sports hernia and hip injuries. 

LG- Derrick Dockery

Dockery is a favorite to start, but he’s better in a man-blocking scheme.

C- Casey Rabach

Rabach plays low, uses angles and is smart.

RG- Chad Rinehart

Mike Williams made a valiant effort to come back and play guard in the NFL.  He lost approximately 80 pounds.  Unfortunately, he will not play due to blood clots.  Rinehart played well in a few stints last year.

RT- Trent Williams

Williams was the 4th overall pick in this past NFL Draft.  He has great athleticism and moves his feet well.

(Trent Williams)

GRADE- 7

Defensive Line

LDE- Phillip Daniels- 35 tck  1 sck  2 p def

There’s a plethora of options at the left defensive end position; Daniels looks like the main option.  Entering his 15th season at age 37, Daniels doesn’t have the same edge speed, but he’s tough. 

NT- Maake Kemoeatu- DNP

Kemoeatu is coming off an Achilles tear.  He has a good work ethic.

RDE- Albert Haynesworth- 37 tck  4 sck  5 p def

“Fat Albert” didn’t want to be a nose tackle.  So, he dropped some weight and became a “Semi-Fat” Albert.  Then he couldn’t pass a conditioning test.  Haynesworth is a very talented player when he wants to be, but with so much money now in his pocket, will he be interested to play?

(Albert Haynesworth)

Others- Adam Carriker, Kedric Gholston, Howard Green

Carriker and Gholston will battle with Daniels to see who will start at left defensive end.  Carriker is interesting.  He’s a former 1st round pick from St. Louis who never panned out.  Will the change in scenery benefit him?

GRADE- 7.5

Linebackers

LOLB- Brian Orakpo- 50 tck  11 sck  2 p def  1 ff

Orakpo adjusted just fine switching from a down defensive end at Texas to a standing outside linebacker for the Redskins.  With Jim Haslett implementing a 3-4, Orakpo won’t have to focus so much on covering tight ends which isn’t his strength.

(Brian Orakpo)

Orakpo is very strong who’s quick and stays low.  He’s tough to block.  He had 11 sacks last season.  He could have more this year as he rushes the quarterback on a more consistent basis in the 3-4.

LILB- London Fletcher- 142 tck  2 sck  1 int 6 p def  1 ff

Fletcher, in my opinion, is one of the most underrated inside linebackers in NFL history.  He finally go some due by finally being voted to his 1st Pro-Bowl last season. 

Fletcher is a tackling machine.  He is 35, and we’ll see if he can keep this type of production going? 

The only concern I have is in a 3-4, an inside linebacker has to get through more blockers.  Fletcher has always been able to roam free. 

RILB- Rocky McIntosh- 94 tck  2 int  4 p def  2 ff

McIntosh is rather athletic and has always had a knack of causing fumbles.

ROLB- Andre Carter- 62 tck  11 sck  4 p def  3 ff

Carter is coming back from a torn triceps injury suffered in December. 

Carter had a great season last year as a down defensive.  As a 3-4 outside linebacker back from his days in San Francisco, he struggled mightily.

Others- H.B. Blades, Perry Riley, Chris Wilson

Blades is a guy who has always impressed me.  Like Fletcher, Blades is undersized, but he still makes plays.

 GRADE- 8

Secondary

LCB- Carlos Rogers- 39 tck  12 p def

Rogers has always been a good cover corner, but he needs to be more aggressive and go for the ball.  The guy had no interceptions last year. 

(Carlos Rogers)

RCB- DeAngelo Hall- 58 tck  4 int  9 p def 

Hall is an opposite of Rogers.  Hall can be too aggressive.  He needs to improve his consistency and run support.

CB- Phillip Buchanon- 43 tck  4 p def  1 sck  2 p def

Buchanon is fast and can run with most receivers in the league.

FS- LaRon Landry- 90 tck  1 int  6 p def  1 sck  2 p def

Landry has good range and O.K. ball skills  He plays best near the line of scrimmage.  Landry can lay some lumber.

SS- Reed Doughty- 91 tck  1 int  3 p def  2 sck

Doughty and Chris Horton have swapped the starting strong safety slot for 2 years.  Doughty has shown more consistency.

 Others- Chris Horton, Justin Tryon

Out of Doughty and Horton, Horton is the better hitter.

GRADE- 7.25

Special Teams

PK- Graham Gano- DNP

Gano will battle with Justin Medlock for the starting kicking job.

P- Josh Bidwell- DNP

Bidwell has not punted in 2 years since being cut by Tampa Bay.

KR- Devin Thomas- 20 ret  22.0 avg  39 lng

With Thomas looking like he’s going to be a full-time starter, the kick return duties may go to Philip Buchanon.

PR- Santana Moss- 11 ret  4.7 avg  11 lng

Moss has always been a solid punt returner.

GRADE- 6.75

 2010 Prediction- 6-10

On offense, the success hinders on the offensive line.  If McNabb can get some time in the pocket, they may be o.k.  At wide receiver, the team is relying on either Devin Thomas or Malcolm Kelly to break out.  On defense, Haynesworth is dominant when he feels like playing.  He can change the landscape of a game; but when things go bad, he’s been known to take plays off.  Brian Orakpo is the guy to really watch out for this season. 

Offensive MVP- Donovan McNabb

Defensive MVP- Brian Orakpo

Breakthrough- Devin Thomas

Overrated- DeAngelo Hall

Underrated- Carlos Rogers

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