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The 5 O’Clock Club: The Practice Squad

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It’s 5 o’clock somewhere…

Washington Redskins v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The 5 o’clock club is published Wednesday to Saturday during the season, and aims to provide a forum for reader-driven discussion at a time of day when there isn’t much NFL news being published. Feel free to introduce topics that interest you in the comments below.

The Redskins roster is currently “in flux” as the team tries to sort through the myriad injuries great and small from the Eagles game. The biggest medium to long-term loss was we heard about almost immediately was CB Greg Stroman, who was filling in for the injured Fabian Moreau. Stroman had surgery on his “core muscle” if I understood Dr. Gruden’s diagnosis correctly.

By midweek, of course, we had gotten the news that Derrius Guice had had “a little procedure” on his knee, and would miss at least a few weeks.

Players reported to be dealing with lesser injuries, but still with the possibility of costing them game time include Jonathan Allen (out a week or two), Caleb Brantley, Montae Nicholson, Colt McCoy and Jordan Reed. Those could potentially wind up being 6 of the 7 Redskins inactive players against the Cowboys, though it sounds as though Reed, who is in the concussion protocol, has the best chance of suiting up on Sunday.

As it stood late in the week, the Redskins had only 9 players on the practice squad, which can accommodate ten. We were told late on Thursday that the tenth spot had been filled with popular pre-season UDFA tight end, Donald Parham.

They had initially planned to put tight end J.P. Holtz back on the PS after he cleared waivers, but the Chicago Bears grabbed him off the waiver wire and signed him to their 53-man roster this week.

Let’s consider the players the Redskins have on the practice squad at the moment:

Adonis Alexander

NFL: NOV 11 Redskins at Buccaneers Photo by Roy K. Miller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Alexander was selected with a 6th round pick in the supplemental draft coming out of Virginia Tech a year ago. He’s a big guy at 6’3” and 205 pounds. The 22 year old has looked unimpressive on the field in limited action, however. When he was drafted, the Redskins DB coach was Torrian Gray, who had previously coached at Va Tech. He has since been replaced by Ray Horton, and Alexander’s fortunes this pre-season took a turn for the worse. He was injured for most of training camp, and didn’t make the 53-man roster. It has been reported that the Redskins will begin training him to play safety in an effort to salvage his career.

Jeremy Reaves

Washington Redskins v Cleveland Browns Photo by: 2019 Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images

Reaves is a free safety who was an undrafted free agent out of South Alabama in 2018. He enjoyed an outstanding pre-season, flashing plays all over the field. He appeared to be a good tackler, and I thought he had played his way onto the 53 in front of Deashazor Everett and Troy Apke. The Redskins coaches didn’t agree, but, of course, Reaves was retained on the practice squad.

Ryan Bee

Baltimore Ravens v Washington Redskins Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

I expected little and less out of Ryan Bee when he was signed as an undrafted free agent this year. The 280 pound defensive end comes from Marshall’s Thundering Herd, and he looked great in the preseason, making tackle after tackle, but this all came late in games, playing against opponents’ bottom-tier players. It wasn’t enough to get Bee into the deep Redskins defensive line roster, and the Redskins have brought players in from other teams to cover for injuries to Brantley and (now) Allen, so it seems fair to say that Bee is seen as a guy with potential for the future.

Craig Reynolds

Cincinnati Bengals v Washington Redskins Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

Reynolds developed quite a fan club in the preseason. The 5’11”, 225 pound running back showed a lot of explosiveness and shiftiness on the field. Unfortunately, the Redskins have future Hall of Fame back Adrian Peterson and 2nd round draft pick Derrius Guice taking up space on the roster. The competition behind them is pretty strong, but, with Shaun Wilson, who has returner skills, and who used to play for current ST coordinator Nate Kaczor in Tampa Bay, currently on IR and out for the season, Reynolds could see some time on the regular season roster if another injury hits the running backs, or if Guice’s injury turns out to be longer-term than currently expected.

Jehu Chesson

NFL: DEC 09 Giants at Redskins Photo by Mark Goldman/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Chesson spent a short time on the Redskins roster last year. While he is a wide receiver, and has 3 career receptions in his 24 career games, Chesson is really a special teams player. He spent his rookie season with the KC Chiefs, and 2018 with the Redskins. I can’t help but get the feeling that — barring substantial injuries to players on the regular roster — Chesson’s role on the roster may have been replaced, and he may be relegated to a practice squad role until the Redskins or another team need special teams help badly enough to devote a wide receiver roster spot to him.

Cam Sims

NFL: Washington Redskins-Training Camp Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Redskins have had a number of undrafted wide receivers with good measurables and potential talent over the past few seasons. Maurice Harris is a guy who spent time with the Redskins on both the practice squad and regular roster, and seemed to have hit the jackpot when he was signed by the Patriots this off-season. Harris was eventually cut from New England — I hear they will struggle through with guys like Josh Gordon, Julian Edelman, Antonio Brown and Phillip Dorsett — and is currently a free agent. Cam Sims seems to have replaced Harris as a fan favorite based on his size (6’5”, 215), but Sims really struggled this preseason, producing very little in the first two games, and notably dropping three passes in the final game against the Ravens. The former Alabama receiver appears to be on a similar career trajectory to that of Mo Harris unless he can find consistency on game day.

Robert Davis

Cincinnati Bengals v Washington Redskins Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

Robert Davis was a 6th round pick of the Redskins in 2017, and he was the only member of that Redskins draft class not to have secured a spot on the 53-man roster as a rookie. Like so many other receivers the Redskins have had in Ashburn in the past two or three years, Davis is a big guy at 6’3” and 210 pounds. He impressed in the pre-season by catching two long touchdown passes in the opening two games and excelling as a special teams gunner on punt coverage. It was widely believed that Davis, who lost his 2018 season to a gruesome leg injury and then fought back through rehab to be ready for 2019 against all expectations to the contrary, had easily cemented his spot on the Redskins 53-man roster. Indeed, Davis was on the team following roster cuts, but didn’t survive to play the first game. Davis was waived and then re-signed to the practice squad as the Redskins shuffled the roster ahead of the Eagles game. Davis appears to have a career as an NFL receiver. It’s likely just a matter of time before he sees the field for some NFL team in a regular season game.

Timon Parris

Washington Redskins v Cleveland Browns Photo by: 2019 Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images

I think the fan perception of Timon Parris is largely negative. The 2018 undrafted free agent from Stony Brook has been seen as a poor performer, but I have seen film studies of him that suggest he is a good developmental prospect who is better than he is generally perceived to be by fans, and who isn’t far from being ready to play in a regular season game. Of course, he was on the 53-man roster in Weeks 16 and 17 last year, playing 6 snaps against the Titans, committing a false start on a 4th and 1 play. Parris is one of those guys, it seems to me, who will either develop into a competent backup in the next season or two, or simply disappear from the NFL altogether.

Chris Odom

NFL: Preseason-Atlanta Falcons at Jacksonville Jaguars Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

This 256 pound DE/OLB was a UDFA in 2017, and has been under contract with three NFL teams (Packers, Falcons (twice), and Redskins) as well as the Salt Lake Stallions of the AAF. Odom, 24, originally signed with the Falcons as an undrafted free agent in 2017. He spent the 2017 preseason in Atlanta, but was released during roster cuts, and he was signed off of waivers by the Green Bay Packers.

In his lone season with the Packers, Odom played in seven games and made six tackles, including one tackle for a loss. Most recently, Odom was with the AAF’s Salt Lake Stallions during their 2019 season, recording seven tackles, three tackles for a loss and 2.5 sacks. He is listed as a DE on Redskins.com (who don’t seem to have a picture of him) but appears to be insurance against injury at the OLB position. Odom doesn’t look like a natural fit for the Redskins, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him gone from the ‘Skins practice squad before long.

Poll

Which Redskins practice squad player do you think is most likely to be on the Redskins 53-man roster at some point during the 2019 season?

This poll is closed

  • 0%
    Adonis Alexander
    (1 vote)
  • 30%
    Jeremy Reaves
    (63 votes)
  • 5%
    Ryan Bee
    (11 votes)
  • 10%
    Craig Reynolds
    (21 votes)
  • 0%
    Jesu Chesson
    (2 votes)
  • 2%
    Cam Sims
    (6 votes)
  • 40%
    Robert Davis
    (84 votes)
  • 1%
    Timon Parris
    (3 votes)
  • 0%
    Chris Odom
    (0 votes)
  • 8%
    Donald Parham
    (18 votes)
209 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Of the 10 players on the Redskin practice squad, how many do you think will be on a regular season roster somewhere in the NFL in 2019 or 2020?

This poll is closed

  • 3%
    None
    (5 votes)
  • 54%
    1-2
    (89 votes)
  • 37%
    3-4
    (61 votes)
  • 4%
    5-6
    (8 votes)
  • 0%
    7 or more
    (1 vote)
164 votes total Vote Now