- I thought we could spend a week tackling some open issues that haven’t gotten a ton of spotlight lately, as bigger, Trent Williamsy issues loom large. Kevin, Tim and I will bang these around tomorrow night in the basement, and we hope you will join us around 9:15 EST for some whiskey and banter.
- First up is taking a step back from the drafting of a first-round quarterback and the unproven wide receiver corps and asking the question, “What is the bread and butter of this offense gonna be?” There are kneejerk reactions to this question, as there would be for any team returning a talent like Jordan Reed, or featuring a dynamic running back corps, but Reed has yet to complete a season in the league, and our running backs are unproven in their current “group” form (we have no idea how Guice/Peterson and Thompson are going to be utilized, and we have never even see Guice on the field in the regular season). This makes it fair game for you to go with what we all might agree is most likely or what we all might agree is most risky. As much as I want to have a go-to running game that can be depended on to keep drives alive in the first half and to close games out in the second half, it strikes me as pretty clear that teams are going to make us try and win through the air. For my money, we are going to need a receiver that can get open quick and get upfield for first downs, so I am going to suggest a combo of Trey Quinn/Terry McLaurin as the potential heart of our offensive success. Sure, Trey has injury issues of his own to lay to rest and McLaurin is as unknown as anything else we haven’t seen yet, but defenses aren’t likely to start with these two in terms of defensive game-planning, so they should have a chance. I am reminded of Case Keenum’s ability to get the ball to Stefon Diggs when it mattered most in that playoff game (22 targets for 200+ yards)...
- For a site named after offensive linemen, I feel we haven’t properly geeked out over what a halfway decent haul inside the offensive trenches. Wes Martin and Ross Pierschbacher were names on a ticker to most people who were far more (and justifiably) wrapped up in the first names off the board for the Redskins. Given that Jay Gruden has had to employ approximately 245,786 different offensive line configurations the last couple years (give or take a few), it strikes me that we should really be getting to know these two newbies. How many times have we found ourselves asking, “Who the hell is that guy and why is playing [fill in the blank with any position along the offensive line]?” Assuming for a moment that both Wes and Ross will make the team, their chances of playing this season are...pretty high. Neither really solves our potential left tackle dilemma, but I am pretty close to preferring either of these guys over Ereck Flowers at left guard. We here at Hogs Haven loved both of these picks, and I can’t wait to feel WAY too confident in their abilities to play right away and play well right away! What do the masses say about these two guys being in the game ahead of the parade of rando’s we saw the last couple seasons?
- Last season, Tim Settle began making a case for himself as a very high-quality member of the defensive line platoon. He has the size and strength to play inside, and he was really proving himself as the season wore on last year. I don’t know that we are stronger anywhere than on the defensive line right now, but I also see teams ride this kind of strength to wins all the time. Hell, the New York Giants rode their defensive line to Super Bowl titles. With Jonathan Allen, Da’ron Payne and Matt Ioannidis in tow, adding Settle gets me pretty amped up. You can do a LOT with a stout defensive line. When I was looking for a way to shine up this defensive line without repeating all the things I have already said about Payne, Allen and Ion Man, the obvious answer was sitting right there: we need to get on the Tim Settle bandwagon as fast as we can.
- Kevin, Tim and I kicked around thoughts about our secondary last week, but I wanted to open it up to the comments section this week: rank our cornerbacks from 1st to 6th right now. I think this may very well show some of our biggest disagreements this July.
- Last up for open issues that don’t involve some of the bigger-ticket items we are faced with these days is the state of the NFC East. I get that the Eagles are everyone’s sweethearts with Carson Wentz at quarterback. I get that people talk themselves into picking Dallas annually. The Giants are at least as messed up as we are, and the good news for Redskins fans is that there stands to be a halfway decent chance they might legitimately ruin Saquon Barkley’s career. I hate it for the player...but I love it for me. We know that the NFC East is constantly being churned in terms of division champs. I am the last Redskins fan to stand up and say that we have a better chance to win the division than Philly, but I feel like an argument can be made for a path to a Redskins title...and I humbly ask for your help to build that argument.
When the Redskins are at their quietest, they are also their most dangerous selves...