Tag:Washington Redskins
Posted on: February 5, 2012 1:51 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2012 9:05 am
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Report: Redskins 'expected to pursue' Peyton

Shanahan and Peyton together: What could go wrong? (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

INDIANAPOLIS -- Between now and March 8, there will be plenty of speculation about what teams will be interested in Peyton Manning if and when he hits the open market. We've already talked about the possibility of Miami, and now we get to mention the other team that everyone expects to pursue Manning: the Redskins.

According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Washington is "expected to pursue" Manning if he becomes a free agent.

This shouldn't be a surprise. For starters, this is the Redskins. If someone with a big name is available, they'll be rumored as a potential team of interest. But that's exacerbated in this instance, because the Redskins rolled out Rex Grossman and John Beck as their starting quarterbacks in 2011.

The result was predictably disastrous, as the Redskins won just five games (oddly, two were over the NFC champion Giants) and finished dead last in the NFC East.

Is Manning the best fit in Washington, though? Mike and Kyle Shanahan like mobile quarterbacks who can roll out of the pocket. Manning is the opposite of that. Would the Shanahans change up their offense to fit Manning? If they're interested in landing him, they'd almost have to.

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Posted on: January 25, 2012 12:06 am
 

Shanahan badly needs an elite quarterback

Griffin

By Josh Katzowitz

With the disastrous season experienced by the Redskins after playing quarterbacks Rex Grossman and John Beck and the fact that coach Mike Shanahan, at one point, believed in one or both of them to be his franchise quarterback, it makes perfect sense that Washington would be scouting quarterbacks at this week’s Senior Bowl.

Shanahan said as much when, while talking to Rapid Reporter Larry Holder, he said, “I think everyone wants a franchise quarterback. If you don’t have a franchise quarterback and you say you’re not looking for one, then you usually won’t be working for very long. Everybody wants that guy. People that usually do have that guy are consistently winning.”

What to do with Washington's QBs?
So, yeah, based on those remarks, Beck and Grossman should be worried about their future employment, especially with the news reported by NFL.com’s Jason La Canfora, who writes that “execs I talk to expect Washington to make a move for St. Louis' No. 2 overall slot in the draft, and select whichever quarterback doesn't go first overall (at this point, it looks like [Robert] Griffin).”

For now, it seems almost guaranteed that the Colts will take Stanford’s Andrew Luck with the No. 1 pick in April’s draft, but Indianapolis would be well served to explore the possibilities of taking the former Baylor quarterback.

The Redskins, who have the No. 6 pick, would have to put together quite a package to wrestle the No. 2 selection away from the Rams, who already have a franchise quarterback in Sam Bradford.

As CBSSports.com’s Ryan Wilson pointed out a week ago the Browns, who have the No. 4 pick, also could be interested in cutting a deal with St. Louis for the right to take whichever quarterback the Colts don’t select.

As NFL.com’s Steve Wyche wrote, "Several teams are going to try and move up to get Griffin but the Browns have the most ammo -- the fourth overall pick and a late first-rounder or high picks in later rounds. Cleveland needs Griffin -- and wants him, according to league sources -- and the Rams will still get their man."

If the Redskins can’t get Griffin, perhaps they’d be better served to grab Matt Flynn. But they also should take caution when signing a backup quarterback who’s put together only a few impressive performances. The Cardinals tried that last year with Kevin Kolb, and you saw just how poorly that move went.

Whichever way the Redskins decide, some kind of move needs to be made. We saw how untenable the combination of Grossman and Beck was last year. Next season, if the two of them are on top of the depth chart, it’s hard to picture a final outcome for the Redskins that would be any different from 2011. Except that Shanahan might be in danger of losing his own job.

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Posted on: January 19, 2012 11:00 pm
Edited on: January 19, 2012 11:01 pm
 

Is Matt Flynn a good fit for Redskins? It depends

Add Flynn's name to the list of possible future 'Skins quarterbacks. (US PRESSWIRE)

By Ryan Wilson

We've previously described the weeks and months between the last day of the Redskins season and the start of training camp as their offseason Super Bowl. It's become less a frenzied free-agent free-for-all under head coach Mike Shanahan and general manager Bruce Allen, but much in the same way an alcoholic is one drink away from an impending bender, Washington owner Dan Snyder seems one high-priced acquisition away from another make-believe offseason championship.

The Redskins head into the spring with dire needs at quarterback. This is the logical conclusion to turning the offense over to Rex Grossman and John Beck. The problem: while Washington was sufficiently awful, they weren't quite bad enough to position themselves for Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III -- not without giving up players or picks first.

Even before the 2011 season ended, we heard rumors that the Redskins could be in the Peyton Manning business should he become available. Two weeks later, there was speculation that, despite their newfound less impulsive approach to roster-building, Washington might trade up to the first-overall pick in April's NFL Draft. And two weeks after that, the "'Skins will try to get Robert Griffin III" rumors were born.

Given the evolution of Redskins-related speculation, it only makes sense that Packers free-agent quarterback Matt Flynn would enter the conversation.

Flynn, drafted as a seventh-round afterthought in 2008, has two career starts, including a Week 17 appearance against the Lions where he went off. By the time it was over, he had completed 70.5 percent of his passes (31 of 44) for 480 yards and six touchdowns. It was enough to make us wonder if Flynn would be this offseason's Kevin Kolb. (To be fair to Flynn, he had accomplished something before being handed $63 million. So he had that going for him.) 

Which brings us back to the Redskins. On Thursday, Chris Russell of ESPN 980 in Washington weighed in on Flynn:
Two things ... factor into the possible Redskins-Flynn equation. Unlike last year, the Redskins will have to make their decisions first on free agency and then the draft. I can't stress how uncomfortable it makes me to bank on the draft to find "THE GUY," and I am NOT a trade up kind of guy. There is no guarantee that RG III is around with the sixth pick, as a matter of fact it is highly unlikely. You may have to move all the way up to the 2nd pick -- which is an extremely high cost.

The last, and this might be most important -- the Green Bay Packers run a very similar style of the West Coast offense as the Redskins do. Every scheme has variances, but these two teams, according to one high end Redskins source -- are "almost the same." Flynn would not face a huge scheme transition like Kevin Kolb did. The source was quick to point this out, saying that Kolb going from Andy Reid and the Eagles to Ken Whisenhunt and the Cardinals (essentially the Steelers offense) was like learning Chinese fluently in a month, when your base language is English.
On Wednesday, CBS Sports NFL Insider Charley Casserly appeared on another Washington station, 106.7 The Fan, to talk about -- you guessed it -- Matt Flynn. Except he wasn't as high on Flynn-to-the-Skins as Russell.

“I think [Flynn] in this system he plays in is really good. So Cleveland, Seattle, if Joe Philbin ends up with a head job in Miami.” Casserly said. “I’m not sure if it’s exactly the same thing the Redskins want in their same system. I’m not sure if everything they’re doing right now is some of the things he’s good at,” he added.

More interesting: Casserly contradicts Russell's claim that the Packers and Redskins run similar schemes. Casserly said the Packers' offense is based on timing while the Redskins rely on deep passes. Given that scouts' generally viewed Flynn as having a weak arm coming out of college (which helps explain why he lasted until the seventh round), he probably wouldn't be a good fit for Washington's down-the-field passing philosophy.

Of course, perceptions change. Next month, quarterback-needy teams could wage a bidding war for Flynn's services, and it's reasonable to think that the 'Skins might be in the middle of it. It's also reasonable to think that they could move up the draft board for either Luck or Griffin. But that's the beauty of Dan Snyder: you never know.

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Posted on: January 17, 2012 1:42 pm
 

Would Browns trade up to get Robert Griffin III?

Would Cleveland give McCoy the Heisman and go with Griffin? (Getty Images/US PRESSWIRE)

By Ryan Wilson

We wondered last week if the Browns, who hold the No. 4 pick in the April draft, might give serious consideration to taking Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III. CBSSports.com mock draft experts Rob Rang and Dane Brugler both have Cleveland grabbing RGIII, decisions no doubt made easier by Colt McCoy's struggles in 2011 coupled with head coach Pat Shurmur's indifferent take on McCoy's future as the starter.

“As we go forward here with Colt, he’s done some really good things,” Shurmur said shortly after the Browns' season ended. “Get him back healthy, get him in an offseason where he has a chance to develop. I expect that Colt will improve just like I expect (backup) Seneca (Wallace) will improve and whoever the quarterbacks are here. I think that can be said for all positions, so the best quarterback will play when we start the season.”

In his mock draft posted Tuesday, NFL.com's Sam Wyche has the Browns trading up two spots to No. 2 to take -- you guessed it -- Griffin. He writes that "Several teams are going to try and move up to get Griffin but the Browns have the most ammo -- the fourth overall pick and a late first-rounder or high picks in later rounds. Cleveland needs Griffin -- and wants him, according to league sources -- and the Rams will still get their man."

Seems reasonable, even given what Browns general manager Tom Heckert said recently (via the Canton Repository):

“In a perfect world, we would stay at 4, but it’s not a perfect world," he noted. "If we think we can get the same guy by moving down a few spots getting an extra pick or picks, why not do that?”

And then there's this from last week, by way of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer's Tony Grossi: "I would not automatically eliminate the Baylor quarterback from consideration with the Browns' top pick simply because he is a product of the one-read, shotgun spread offense."

Of course, Kevin Kolb was also mentioned as a possibility should the Cardinals decide that they'd seen enough after one uninspiring season. As we wrote previously, we're not convinced Kolb is much of an upgrade over McCoy, and certainly not at starting-quarterback money. But whatever happens this much is certain: the Browns absolutely have to nail this draft. It's up to team president Mike Holmgren, Heckert and Shurmur to figure out if Griffin is part of that conversation.

And if he's not, there are sure to be teams interested in trading up to grab him. Earlier this month we mentioned the Redskins as a possibility, something draft expert Chris Steuber echoed again Tuesday.

"We all agree that a team will trade up for RG3. My money is on the Redskins. Daniel Snyder, for better or worse, rolls high stakes dice."

If there's any team that needs a quarterback more than the Browns, it's the Redskins.

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Posted on: January 11, 2012 8:03 pm
Edited on: January 11, 2012 8:23 pm
 

Raheem Morris lands DB assistant job in WAS

Morris

By Josh Katzowitz

Raheem Morris has found a new job, and he’s had to take a rather large demotion to get it. As the Tampa Bay Times reports, Morris has been hired as the Redskins defensive backs coach, meaning Morris won’t even get to be a coordinator in his first job since the Buccaneers fired him as head coach.

Not that he’s ever been an NFL defensive coordinator before anyway. Three years ago, the Tampa Bay front office was so impressed by Morris’ work as the Buccaneers secondary coach, the ownership elevated him to the head coaching spot.

Morris' Next Move
After a 2010 season in which the Buccaneers finished a surprising 10-6, the team folded into a 4-12 squad this year while seemingly quitting on Morris with about a month left in the season.

But Morris has a previous relationship with Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan (the two were assistant coaches together in Tampa Bay from 2004-05) and knows Redskins general manager Bruce Allen well (Allen was the Buccaneers GM at the time).

While the Buccaneers defense last season finished last in points allowed and 30th in yards, the pass defense was only the 12th-worst team in the league of yards given up (what’s not so good is that the team faced the fourth-least amount of passes).

The Redskins, meanwhile, ranked 12th in the league in passing yards allowed, but earlier Wednesday night, the Washington Post reported that the contract of long-time Redskins safeties coach Steve Jackson would not be renewed.

According to the paper, Morris has an understanding with coach Mike Shanahan that if he's offered a defensive coordinator job, he can bail out from Washington. Morris also has interviewed for the Vikings defensive coordinator position.

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Posted on: January 10, 2012 5:29 pm
 

Report: RG3 'informing' Baylor he's going to NFL

Griffin's met with Briles and is reportedly heading to the NFL. (AP)
By Will Brinson

On Sunday during The NFL Today, CBS Sports Charley Casserly reported that Baylor quarterback (and second-rated would-be draftee) Robert Griffin III would think over his NFL Draft decision, meet with Baylor coach Art Briles on Tuesday and make a call on whether to go pro or not.

He's reportedly made that call and, according to Chris Mortensen of ESPN, he's "informing" Briles that he will enter the NFL Draft. Mortensen writes all that's left for the Heisman winner is to pick an agent, which could happen by Tuesday evening.

Briles said earlier Tuesday, via our NFL Draft Scout amigos, that Griffin is "contemplating what he feels like is the thing that's going to give him peace."

2012 NFL Draft

In our most recent 2012 NFL Mock Drafts, Griffin, who is the No. 3-ranked prospect overall in our rankings, went to the Browns in both cases.

When the real draft rolls around, there's a pretty good chance that RG3 wouldn't even last that long; there's plenty of rumors circulating that the Redskins will make a move to leapfrog the Browns for the second- or third-overall pick.

We already know that the Rams are locked in on Sam Bradford and that the Vikings are committed to Christian Ponder as their starter for the future.

That means both teams will be looking to maximize the value out of their respective draft slots, and that could very easily equate to a trade down that involves either the Redskins, the Dolphins, or some other surprise team.

All of this is to say that it makes absolute sense for Griffin to make a leap to the pros now, rather than waiting a year. So it's no surprise to hear that's exactly what he's doing.

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Posted on: January 5, 2012 9:01 pm
Edited on: January 5, 2012 9:02 pm
 

Let 'Redskins will trade up for RGIII' rumors fly

Washington needs a quarterback, obviously. The question is who will it be in 2012? (US PRESSWIRE)

By Ryan Wilson

For 20 NFL teams, the 2011 season ended last Sunday. For the Redskins under owner Dan Snyder, this time of year has become known as their offseason Super Bowl. It's an unflattering commentary on their free-spending personnel decisions in free agency and the draft that ratchets up fans' hopes before crushing them, usually around Halloween. It's became an annual event, though less so under head coach Mike Shanahan and general manager Bruce Allen.

But as the saying goes, old habits die hard. With the free agency two months off and the NFL Draft some six weeks after that, the speculation has begun.

2012 NFL Draft
This isn't surprising based on recent team history and the Redskins' dire need for a quarterback. Even Joe Gibbs, the man who traded for Mark Brunell and installed him as the starter in 2004, acknowledges as much.

"Generally for me the number one thing you want to try to do, whatever the cost, is try to solve the quarterback situation, get that thing solidified," he said during an appearance on ESPN 980. "I think the Redskins are going through that process, [to find] a solid starter that’ll been there every game for them, somebody they really can say can take them to the promised land."

In early December, we wondered if Peyton Manning might be in Washington's future before the media rumor mill started throwing around the idea that the 'Skins might be in the "trading up for Andrew Luck" business.

Here's the latest, via ESPN's John Clayton, who appeared on Vinny Cerrato's Baltimore radio show earlier this week (transcription courtesy of the Sports Bog's Dan Steinberg): Washington should draft Baylor's Robert Griffin III.

“You can see how the dynamics go,” Clayton said. “You’re at the mercy of the draft. I would have to think if you’re gonna be Matt Flynn, send a nice thank you to Matt Barkley for making you $12 million, because think about where he would fit in.

“If you’re Cleveland, you do have a chance to trade up to get RGIII, but if you can’t get him, then you might consider Matt Flynn because he’s in that Green Bay West Coast offense system. Seattle, sitting down with the what 11th or 12th pick depending on the coin toss, they’re gonna be out of position to get a quarterback, so I think they’re gonna have to be in the mix. Miami is gonna have to choose between Orton or Matt Flynn.”

When Cerrato asked about the 'Skins, Clayton responded, almost reflexively: “Ah, they’ll trade with St. Louis and get RGIII.”

The Colts have the top pick in April's draft followed by the Rams. Indianapolis has an obvious need at quarterback (even if Manning's healthy, he ain't playing forever) but St. Louis took their franchise quarterback, Sam Bradford, with the 2010 first-overall pick. If the demand for Griffin is sufficiently high, the Rams may be willing to trade down.

Helping Griffin's stock? The news Thursday afternoon that Oklahoma's Landry Jones will return to school.

This comes two weeks after USC's Matt Barkley announced he was staying for his senior season, taking two possible first-round talents out of this year's draft pool. The other beneficiary in addition to Griffin? Matt Flynn, of course.

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Posted on: January 5, 2012 9:00 am
 

Report: Raheem Morris spotted with Redskins

MorrisBy Josh Katzowitz

Raheem Morris made his name originally on the defensive side of the ball, and he was so impressive in his two years as the Buccaneers defensive backs coach, Tampa Bay ownership hired him as the head coach three years ago.

Of course, that experiment backfired, as Morris went 17-31 in his three years (including a 10-game losing streak to end his tenure Monday), but that doesn’t mean other teams won’t take a look at Morris’ defensive skills.

According to George Wallace of WTOP radio in Washington, it’s already begun as Morris was spotted dining with “Redskins brass.” Morris and Washington offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan were young assistants together in Tampa Bay in 2004-05, so there is some familiarity there (in fact Shanahan was arrested and charged with misdemeanor intoxication after he and Morris were escorted from an Indianapolis bar). Also, Redskins general manager Bruce Allen was the GM in Tampa Bay during the time both assistants were together.

So, the union could make sense from a former relationship standponit.

The only problem with the Redskins’ apparent pursuit of Morris to shore up a Washington defense that finished 21st in points allowed this year? The Buccaneers defense finished last in the league in points allowed and gave up at least 35 points in seven of the final 12 games of the season.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com