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Tag:Washington Redskins
Posted on: January 1, 2012 11:07 am
Edited on: January 1, 2012 12:51 pm
 

Report: RG3 to enter Draft, Colts interested

RG3 says he'll decide on the draft "pretty soon." (AP)
By Will Brinson

Robert Griffin III, the second-rated quarterback on Rob Rang's big board, recently said he would make a decision about entering the NFL Draft "pretty soon." Many believed that was code for "already gone," and a report Sunday indicates that RG3 to the NFL is a done deal.

2012 NFL Draft

That's according to Chris Mortensen of ESPN, who reports that Griffin's already made up his mind to take the leap to the pros and that's it's simply a matter of semantics before he's being moved around on 2012 NFL Mock Draft boards sans the little underclassman asterisk.

Mort apparently spoke to Griffin's father, Robert Junior, who told him that RG3's decision would be known "when Robert makes this official and selects the right agent to represent him."

So either RGJR (not as catchy, I know) was saying that his son is going pro or, more likely, he slipped up and was trying to say that RG3's going to make a decision and framed the part about the agent incorrectly.

Whatever, this just makes sense. RG3 won the Heisman, he's a coveted prospect, a hot name and easily the No. 2 quarterback on everyone's draft board. And, apparently, he's also highly coveted by the Colts.

Indy, it's been assumed, will just take Andrew Luck. But they could still beat the Jaguars and end up with the No. 2 pick in the draft. If that's the case, Mort reports the Colts are ready to make RG3 their quarterback of the future if they end up falling out of the top pick.

That's a nightmare scenario for the Browns, Dolphins, Redskins, and any other team who's quarterback needy, since the Rams will get to fire up a full-on bidding war for the top pick in the draft.

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Posted on: December 30, 2011 4:57 pm
Edited on: December 30, 2011 4:58 pm
 

Top Ten with a Twist: Draft needs

A. Luck should be a No. 1 selection in next year's draft. Who will select him, though (US Presswire).

By Josh Katzowitz

As we enter the final weekend of the season, a number of squads are just playing out the string, hoping to put a solid performance on film, ready to clean out their lockers and look ahead to next year. While only four games on this week’s schedule mean absolutely nothing in terms of the postseason, quite a few of those teams are just looking to play spoiler.

And looking to the 2012 draft, where they can begin to rebuild their team or shore up that one position that could put them over the hump for next season. That’s why we’re taking the 10-worst teams in the league this year and finding one major flaw that needs to be fixed from April 26-28 in New York City’s Radio Music Hall.

For these teams -- and their fans -- the time has come to salivate at the prospects of landing the exact right guy that could change their fortunes for years to come.

10. Bills: Defensive line -- I didn’t like the Ryan Fitzpatrick $59 million extension earlier this year, and I hate it now. But I think Buffalo has other concerns for the moment, and they come on defense. For one, Buffalo has a tough time stopping the run. First-round pick Marcell Dareus has been a bit inconsistent at the nose tackle, but he also has the ability to play like a monster. The 3-4  ends, though, need to be better. Injured tackle Kyle Williams obviously will help when he returns next season, but the ability to rush the passer once in a while also would help (Buffalo’s 25 sacks ranks 30th in the league).

9. Dolphins: Quarterback -- Look, the Dolphins have some talent. They proved that when Tony Sparano’s job was on the line, and they started winning games. They proved it by nearly beating Tom Brady, and they proved it by nearly beating Tim Tebow (that last point was a joke). While Matt Moore has been much better than expected after taking over for Chad Henne, he’s a Band-Aid. I think most of us would agree that Henne isn’t the answer as the starter, and perhaps, he and Moore could have a battle to see who could back-up a legit starting quarterback. Reggie Bush established himself as a 1,000-yard rusher, and with a talented quarterback like Robert Griffin III (if he lasts that long in the draft), the Dolphins could begin pushing for AFC East crowns.

8. Browns: Pass rushers -- Cleveland got two defensive linemen early last year (tackle Phil Taylor in the first round and end Jabaal Sheard in the second), and they’ve done a nice job on the left side of the defensive line. But the defense ranks 25th in the league in sacks, and defensive end Jayme Mitchell hasn’t had a great season. Marcus Benard, coming off a solid rookie season last year, is on IR, and if the Browns could get one more high-end rusher in the draft, they’d have talent and depth.

7. Redskins: Quarterback -- It’s probably time for Mike Shanahan to come to the realization that his quarterback picks the past two years have been disastrous (Donovan McNabb, Rex Grossman, John Beck). He said the other day that the rebuild of this franchise has taken more time than he thought, but a standout quarterback obviously would help that process along. Shanahan also said that there was no question in his mind that he’d be back next season, but unless he finds a way to invigorate his offense, that might be a different story this time next year.

6. Chiefs: Right tackle -- Looking across Kansas City’s depth chart, there’s not one position group that so obviously needs to be overhauled. The Chiefs have talent, even if some of those positions don’t have much depth. But right tackle Barry Richardson has badly struggled this season. According Pro Football Focus, Richardson is the worst-rated offensive tackle in the league (the decision to cut Jared Gaither near the end of the season was a bad one). Left tackle Branden Albert is solid, but the right side of the line needs to be reworked.

Minnesota's secondary has been a big concern this year (US Presswire).5. Buccaneers: Run defenders -- The Buccaneers tried to shore up their defensive end spots last draft, taking Adrian Clayborn in the first round and Da’Quan Bowers in the second round. Considering Tampa Bay ranks dead last in sacks, the experiment hasn’t paid off immediate dividends. But the Buccaneers are also terrible against the run, and even though tackle Albert Haynesworth has played better than most of us had a right to expect, there are still huge holes to fill in the lineup.

4. Vikings: Secondary -- The Vikings rank as the 31st-worst defense in the NFL, but in reality, their front seven has talent (for instance, Jared Allen, Kevin Williams and Chad Greenway). Minnesota lost Antoine Winfield (its best corner) early in the year, Chris Cook has legal troubles, safety Jamarca  Sanford has struggled badly and the rest of the safeties have been ravaged by injuries. It’s no  wonder opposing quarterbacks dominate the Vikings defensive backs. On the season, Minnesota has recorded seven interceptions, worst in the NFL. The Vikings need to find somebody who can force turnovers in order to improve this unit.

3. Jaguars: Receivers – Oh, how they need receivers. Yes, Blaine Gabbert has been, by far, the worst rookie quarterback to play this year, but Jacksonville, even with new ownership and a new coach, probably needs to give him more than a season to see if he’s a quarterback of the future. He also needs somebody who can catch his passes. Here are Jacksonville’s top-three receivers: Mike Thomas, Jarret Dillard, and yeah, nobody else. In fact, there’s a good chance running back Maurice Jones-Drew will end up as the team’s leading pass-catcher this season. Hard to blame Gabbert completely when his receiving corps is so bad.

2. Colts: Running backs -- Assuming Peyton Manning returns healthy next season -- admittedly, a huge assumption -- his receivers should continue to be fine (this, of course, depends on what happens with free agents Reggie Wayne and Pierre Garcon). But we’ve seen this year that without a running game, a Manning-less Colts squad has very little chance of doing anything (mostly because Manning makes up for SO many team deficiencies). Joseph Addai, who’s averaging 3.8 yards per carry and probably won’t get to 500 rushing yards on the season for the second year in a row, might be released into free agency, and Donald Brown, while improved, isn’t a legit No. 1 running back. The Colts obviously have a big decision to make regarding Manning and Andrew Luck, but taking a running back probably wouldn’t be a bad idea.

1.Rams: Offensive linemen -- There’s been talk that maybe the Rams should grab Luck if they end up with the No. 1 pick. Which, with Sam Bradford on the team, would be ludicrous. Instead, St. Louis should be focused on how to put together an offensive line that doesn’t lead the league in sacks allowed. The biggest problem, not including injuries to Jason Smith and Jacob Bell that have hurt the unit, has been the line’s interior. Linemen aren’t the sexiest position, but damn, St. Louis needs to find some that can stay healthy and keep Bradford and Steven Jackson out of danger.

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Posted on: December 30, 2011 11:00 am
 

NFC East gets Taiwanese animation video treatment

Taiwan really respects the owners of the NFC East. (YouTube.com)
By Will Brinson

On Sunday night, the Giants and Cowboys will square off in the "NFC East championship game" -- the winner gets a trip to the playoffs, and the loser's got some serious questions to answer about how 2011 went down.

As with anything that draws attention in American, the folks at Next Media Animation decided to break down the matchup, Taiwanese animation style.

The video below, as you can tell from the photo above, should make the owners of the NFC East teams very happy. There's Dan Snyder as a baby, Jerry Jones breathing fire and getting insulted -- "they won't win anything until he dies" -- before collapsing on the field, Eli Manning digging his own grave and just for fun, Michael Vick riding an eagle while teams shoot shotguns at him.

And yes, the Cowboys are apparently considered chokers in any language.



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Posted on: December 30, 2011 10:40 am
Edited on: December 30, 2011 10:50 am
 

Robert Griffin III to make Draft decision 'soon'

RG3 says he'll decide on the draft "pretty soon." (AP)
By Will Brinson

Though he was technically outplayed Washington quarterback Keith Price on Thursday, Robert Griffin, III, still looked outstanding in a shootout for the ages at the Alamo Bowl.

2012 NFL Draft

Next up is the decision about whether RG3, a projected top-10 pick and the second-rated quarterback on Rob Rang's big board, will leave Baylor for the NFL. And the Heisman winner says a decision is coming 'soon.'

"Pretty soon," Griffin said when asked when he'd make his decision, though he didn't know what the decision would be. "I have no idea. I'm going to enjoy this right now with my teammates and we'll get to that later."

Griffin's stock probably couldn't get much higher than it is now and, unlike Matt Barkley at USC, Griffin won't be one of the favorites to win the BCS title in 2012. But he's pretty clearly a fan of the school that's given him a chance to shine on the national level.

"I want Baylor nation to enjoy this," Griffin said. "It's not about me. I've got about two weeks. I'll enjoy this the next day, and then the next day, and then I'll make it."

From a business perspective, Griffin would be wise to leave for the NFL. Teams are enamored with his skillset and there's a shortage of elite quarterbacks in the 2012 NFL Draft -- only Stanford's Andrew Luck also ranks in the top 20 overall prospects.

If both the Browns and Redskins end up with top-10 picks, it would be an absolute epic upset to see RG3 drop past both of them.

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Posted on: December 29, 2011 4:35 pm
 

Adrian Peterson to have knee surgery on Friday

AP will go under the knife on Friday. (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

The Vikings aren't wasting any time when it comes to getting Adrian Peterson under the knife -- the star running back, who tore his ACL and MCL on Christmas Eve and is expected to miss eight to nine months, will undergo surgery on Friday.

That's according to our Vikings Rapid Reporter Joe Oberle who reports that Dr. James Andrews will perform the surgery.

"[We’re] praying that everything goes well," coach Leslie Frazier said on Thursday. "We'll get an update after the surgery."

That Peterson is undergoing surgery less than a week after suffering the injury tells you exactly what kind of timeline the Vikings are up against -- waiting any longer to get Peterson working on rehab could seriously effect how quickly he can return. As it is now, Peterson will be pushing it to make a Week 1 return even if everything goes smoothly.

After the surgery, Peterson will return to Minnesota for rehab.

"He’ll do a portion of it here and we’re going to talk more about what’s the best way to do it," Frazier said per Oberle. "He wants to do the best thing for him, and I think the best thing would be to do a great deal of it here."

The best thing for Peterson -- and for the Vikings -- is to be prudent with his health at this point. Frazier and the team erred, clearly, in putting Peterson on the field in a meaningless game while he was dealing with an injury.

They'd be wise to remember that before trying to rush him back for Week 1 in 2012.


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Posted on: December 27, 2011 2:35 pm
Edited on: December 27, 2011 2:36 pm
 

Redskins release RB Ryan Torain

Torain was buried on the depth chart and Washington decided to move on without him. (US PRESSWIRE)

By Ryan Wilson

Ryan Torain started just four games for the Redskins this season and averaged 3.4 yards a carry. And on Tuesday, the team released him, according to ESPN 980's Chris Russell.

Torain struggled with injuries and competition in Washington; rookie Roy Helu emerged as a legitimate NFL starter (147 carries, 635 yards in 14 games) after Tim Hightower went down with a season-ending knee injury in October, and Evan Royster was impressive against the Vikings last Saturday (19 carries, 132 yards).

Torain took the news about like you'd expect.

"It's a business," he said according to Redskins beat reporter Grant Paulsen. "This is how it goes. It's ugly."

Torain was originally a fifth-round pick of the Broncos in the 2008 draft, and arrived in Washington prior to the 2010 season. In Week 4, Torain had his best game as a member of the Redskins, rushing for 135 yards on 19 carries against the Rams.

“It was a very emotional game for me just wanting to get out there and play,” he said at the time. “I just wanted to give it my all.”

Head coach Mike Shanahan added: “He looked like he was [playing] at a different level. Like he was possessed, breaking tackles and making plays.”

On Monday, Shanahan noted that the Redskins had plenty of depth at running back, praising Royster's effort against the Vikings. But he also seemed confused by Torain's struggles. Which explains why, a day later, the team decided to move on without him.

Washington heads into the offseason with plenty of questions but Shanahan sees reason for optimism as he concludes his second season as the 'Skins' head coach.

“Oh yeah, [progress has taken] a lot longer than I first anticipated,” he said. “We had less depth than I thought. We were a little bit older at a few different positions and I thought we might keep those players a little bit longer than we did.”

But Shanahan added that he sees a big difference in this team when compared to two years ago, with improved youth and depth among the biggest changes. Next up: a solid free agency and draft. (And who knows, maybe this guy is in Washington's future.)

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Posted on: December 26, 2011 10:44 am
Edited on: December 26, 2011 4:44 pm
 

Adrian Peterson out 8-9 months after knee surgery

2012 could already be a problem for AP. (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

On Saturday, Vikings running back Adrian Peterson suffered an absolutely horrific injury. On Monday, trainer Eric Sugarman announced that Peterson tore his ACL, MCL and both the media and lateral meniscus in his left knee, will require surgery soon and is expected to miss eight to nine months of time doing rehab and recovery.

Per our Vikings Rapid Reporter Joe Oberle, that "leaves his PCL, LCL and chondral surface of his knee non-injured."

"Basically our goal now with Adrian is restore his range of motion, decrease the swelling and keep his quadriceps strong in order to prepare him for surgery, which is going to probably be in the next 7-10 days," Sugarman said. "We expect most people to recover from this injury in 8-9 months and instead of comparing Adrian to any other player at any level that has ever had an anterior cruciate ligament, and they happen every day, I really would like Adrian to stand on his own merit."

Week 16 Recap
Therefore, it's quite possible the beginning of next year could be in danger for Peterson as well. Sports Illustrated's Peter King spoke to Vikings coach Leslie Frazier on Sunday and, while the coach is optimistic, reading between the lines makes it pretty clear that Peterson won't come into 2012 fully healthy.

"Wes Welker's rare," Frazier told King. "But I talked to Adrian on the plane on the way home last night. He's down, of course. But he will attack his rehab viciously. He is such a strong-minded guy. We won't know everything about the damage until the surgery is done, but we think if everything goes perfectly, Adrian will be back to play at the start of next season.

"I think he'll turn out to be one of those case studies people look at when they want to see how a guy rehabbed to come back strong."

First, let me point out that I actually kind of agree with Frazier here: Peterson is a beast, and if there was one person in the NFL who needed to work hard enough to beat a medical timeline, Peterson is that guy. Additionally, he's returned from a major injury (a broken collarbone he suffered while diving into the end zone in college) before and dominated after it.

But that doesn't mean that Frazier should get off light simply because Peterson is a physical freak of nature. As noted in "Sorting the Sunday Pile," the Vikings have been running out banged-up players in games that don't matter all year and now it's could cost Frazier in a big way when it comes to the success in his second year as Vikings coach.

My colleague Charley Casserly agreed too, pointing out that someone with the Vikings should have "dragged out" Peterson's rehab for the rest of the season to make sure he was healthy heading into the offseason.

There was simply no need for AP to be on the field during a meaningless game at the end of a lost season. And as a result, it's possible it could cost the Vikings well into the next season.


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Posted on: December 24, 2011 2:51 pm
Edited on: December 24, 2011 5:25 pm
 

Adrian Peterson suffers gruesome leg injury

Trainers look at AP after he suffered a horrible leg injury Sunday (AP)

By Will Brinson

UPDATE, via the AP: Peterson is scheduled for an MRI late Saturday after taking a direct hit to his left knee in Saturday's 33-26 win over the Washington Redskins. Coach Leslie Frazier said Peterson had a sprained knee and would be evaluated after the team returned to Minnesota. 

Peterson said he knew "it was something bad" the moment he was hit and that he was in "severe pain" on he lay on the field. He was hurt on a tackle by Redskins safety DeJon Gomes on a 3-yard gain on the first offensive play of the second half.

 On the next play, Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder was hurt when sacked by Adam Carriker and London Fletcher. Frazier said Ponder had "concussion-like symptoms" and will be reevaluated in the coming days.

-------

On the Vikings first drive of the third quarter, the worst possible thing for Minnesota happened, as Adrian Peterson suffered an absolutely brutal leg injury -- there is zero chance he'll return for the game against Washington.

As our Redskins Rapid Reporter John Keim points out, Peterson was carted off from the field and has actually already been ruled out.

Peterson took a handoff on first and 10 and cut back to the left side of the field. When Redskins rookie safety DeJon Gomes tackled him, Peterson's left leg caved in and he fell to the ground in obvious pain.

After trainers looked at the running back's leg, he was carted off from the field.

Things didn't get much better for the Vikings after that, as rookie quarterback Christian Ponder suffered a concussion -- he's out for the remainder of the game as well.
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