I don't want to comment on the other ESPN Insider positional rankings, specifically the ones I cannot access due to their subscription wall, though Extreme Skins is always on the case and they allege (and they are right) that ESPN Insider rates us 19th on linebackers and dead last at defensive line. So some feint praise at DBs is welcome:
The Redskins have a very talented secondary that struggled with consistency and durability last season under defensive coordinator Greg Williams. The duo of FS Sean Taylor and SS LaRon Landry gives the Redskins a tremendous amount of versatility in the backend of their secondary. Taylor is a big, playmaking safety with good athletic skills, while Landry has the upside to develop into a Pro Bowl player. However, Taylor needs to play with more consistency in 2007. CB Shawn Springs is the team's most consistent player in the secondary when healthy. Springs has good cover skills and can match up with the opponent's No. 1 receiver. CB Carlos Rogers is a physical player who can be a liability in coverage due to his inconsistent play. The Redskins have a lot of depth at corner in David Macklin, Fred Smoot and Jerametrius Butler.
My only concern with Landry is that he might be a "head case". From commenter Robert at Redskins Huddle:
Overall I think we're miles ahead of where we were in the secondary this time last year. The person who was set to start opposite Sean Taylor (Pierson Prioleau) is here and hopefully will not get injured on the opening kickoff. We have a 1st round draft pick in LaRon Landry to win that spot from him early on, though if neither pans out we will depend on Omar Stoutmire instead of journeymen (Troy Vincent) or Vernon Fox (who actually played quite admirably, given the circumstances). Mike Rumph and Kenny Wright are replaced by Fred Smoot and David Macklin. Both are demonstrably better, and the former was demonstrably better here, in this system. Even that wasn't enough, as the team went ahead and signed Jerametrius Butler. All the new additions were paid peanuts or, in Smoot's case, peanuts to what he was making.
Carlos Rogers couldn't catch a cold last year, though I strongly suspect he was anomalously stone-handed. He defended 16 passes last year, intercepting just one, and for those of us watching all the games we know a few of those defensed footballs were especially catchable right at his numbers. His rookie year he defensed 2 passes, intercepted 2. I'm not suggesting that he'll pick 50% of the passes he defends in 2007, but certainly more than 6% of them.