The Givens: With his success in his rookie year and by taking the league by storm last season, Robert Griffin III is a no-brainer for a captain's spot this season. As one of the youngest on the team in 2012, his teammates elected him as captain halfway through his rookie year, a move that was one of the many reasons for the 7 game win streak and dasg to the playoffs. Another offseason under his belt and a whole year of maturing, and RGIII will wear the C forever in the Burgundy and Gold.
Another given, and one who has been a given since he got here, is London Fletcher. 59 brings everything you want from a captain to the table. Grit, toughness, leadership, vocal. Fletcher has it all and doesn't shy away from getting in someone's face, but also backing up and teaching a younger player. It says a lot that a free agent can come in and be a captain from about day one and that is exactly what London did. He may be losing a step with age, but the leadership is invaluable and as long as he is on the Skins, so will the 59 jersey have a C on it.
This may be a bit of a stretch for some, but after last year there is no way you can leave this guy off the givens list. Trent Williams. I thought that him being a captain last season was a reach, especially with the way his 2011 season ended. But 71 proved me wrong and played like a man possessed (ask Hawaiian club goers). His toughness and willingness to play on one leg for most of the season is all you can ask for in a true leader, and probably more. There were doubters all throughout Redskins land about whether or not this guy had what it takes, and he showed undoubtedly that he did. A Pro Bowl season in 2012 and a swing to the face of Richard Sherman are just two of the reasons why Silverback should be a captain once again in 2013.
Possibles: Assuming there are six captains, three are already in the bag. There are definitely some willing and deserving candidates on the roster for the remaining three spots.
Santana Moss. Correct me if I am wrong, but I think 89 has been a captain before. He brings what you want in a captain. Good play on the field, and great leadership off it. This guy has been around for awhile and has been a huge fan favorite, but could be a roster casualty come offseason. But if he is on the team, he could be a great candidate for a captain spot. Similar to Fletcher, his play might have dipped over the past few years, but 8 TDs a year ago is no fluke. Yards and catches may not be the same, but at the end of the day it is the number of points on the board. This guy did that and wouldn't look bad with a big C on his jersey.
I am going to package these next six guys together. Not because I think they both deserve it, but because it is pretty even and they could both potentially be captains. On the D-Line, I think Barry Cofield and Steven Bowen. Both of these guys have been captains in the past. It is easy to forget about them though because they just go about their work and you don't hear much from them. This is great for a captain, but also why they might not fit the role. A captain has to be vocal and sometimes these guys are just too quiet. I wouldn't mind having 96 or 72 as a captain on my team based on their work-ethics alone.
The other pair has to be the bookends on the LB group. Ryan Kerrigan and Brian Orakpo. Both of these guys, when healthy (Orakpo), can absolutely wreak havoc anywhere on the field. It seems as though a lot of players look up to these guys on how to keep their motor running. Kerrigan barely misses snaps and Orakpo has termed the coin hunting for the defense. You want this out of your leader. If I had to give a slight edge to one of them, I think it would be Kerrigan. He has taken the team by storm in his first two years and that should continue. His motor is always running and he literally gives 110% every play. Would like him to be more vocal though.
A pair from the offense could be great choices as well. Pierre Garcon and Alfred Morris. These two helped this Redskins offense become a force in the NFL last year. Their playmaking ability were refreshing for a team that has struggled with the ball over the several seasons. The fire these two have on the field make them captain-worthy. And their mild manner off the field make them easy role models for teammates and fans. It would not surprise me to see either of these guys with a C in their second years on the team.
Darkhorses: This last group is a group of guys who might not be thought of on the first go around when it comes to captains, but they could sneak their way in. Possibly.
Let's just get this one out of the way. He is one of the most experienced guys on the roster, but we all know what else he can bring to the table. Not to mention the fact that he was stripped of his captaincy last year. But DeAngelo Hall could and should receive some votes for a captain's patch in 2013. He played well at times last year and even took a paycut to stay with the team this year. That sounds like captain material. But the captain will have to DeAngelo, not his alter-ego MeAngelo.
Reed Doughty has brought all you can ask for at the safety position. He may not be as gifted athletically as the other players on the team, but he gives his all out there every chance he gets. He started in 10 games in 2012 when he was expected just to be a role player. And he played admirably in moments, especially the Playoff game. But the way he might earn a captain's spot is by his play on special teams. We know that Lorenzo Alexander is gone, but Doughty is one of those unsung heroes on punt and kickoff teams. Mike Shanahan had high praise for him, and the team definitely needs someone to fill that role left by Alexander.
Next would be a guy who is a personal favorite and someone who I would love to see get some recognition on this team. Darrel Young is a guy who just does what he is told and does it pretty well. He has moved positions, scored touchdowns knocked guys around in his short time in the league. I would consider him one of the quiet leaders, and that is why he might find himself as a long shot for a captain. If not on offense, he could be that guy to replace LoAx for special teams captain. I'm just going to keep him in mind for now.
And the final darkhorse is a guy so low on the radar, but one who makes sense. Chris Chester is a no-nonsense offensive lineman who made himself a force to be reckoned with here on the Skins. There were questions marks across the line, even with Trent Williams' health. But the one spot that was solid was right guard, thanks to Chester. The grizzly veteran goes about his job and has a mean streak. Maybe he won't get a captain's patch but he is one of those unsung heroes and someone who is a forgotten leader on this young team.
Offense- Robert Griffin III, Trent Williams, Pierre Garcon
Defense- London Fletcher, Ryan Kerrigan
Special Teams- Reed Doughty
What do you think? Who will represent the Burgundy and Gold this season and wear those nifty C patches?