Now that the preseason has come to a close, it is now time for Coach Jay Gruden and his staff to trim the roster to 53 players. Myself, and others who cover the team, have noticed that this is the deepest and most talented team that the Redskins have had in a long time. That being said there were some positions battles that played out until the final moments in the final preseason game. Here is my final roster prediction. Starters are marked in bold.
Case Keenum, Dewayne Haskins- With Colt McCoy’s never being healthy from the last season injury, that turned the quarterback competition into a null contest. The plan was to be patient all along with Dewayne Haskins and have him sit and learn. So by default that left Case Keenum as the starting quarterback in week 1. Now I expect McCoy to be placed on IR and given six weeks to heal and then the decision will be made to keep a third QB or let him go. If Keenum plays bad and is replaced then Keenum might be the odd person out.
Running Backs- 4
Adrian Peterson, Derrius Guice, Chris Thompson, Samaje Perine- The running back position is one of the deepest on the team. However this really wasn’t much of a competition. Peterson, Guice, and Thompson were guarantees to make the roster, leaving only one spot available. Perine, who is a Gruden favorite, has the inside track on that position. Bryon Marshall, who I believe would be better for that fourth spot, faced an uphill battle for that spot and did not shine on the field. Expect Marshall to be on the practice squad.
Wide Receiver- 7
Josh Doctson, Paul Richardson, Trey Quinn, Terry McLaurin, Kelvin Harmon, Robert Davis, Stephen Sims. This is by far the toughest and deepest position on the roster. Unless a team comes with a nice trade offer for Doctson (which is unlikely,) then he will be on the team. Richardson, Quinn, and McLaurin are locks. Robert Davis is looking better and better each game. Kelvin Harmon has shown big play ability. Stephen Sims had a phenomenal night returning kicks and had the only touchdown. Gruden has historically kept six receivers but this is the exception to that rule. Darvin Kidsy is right on the door and it wouldn’t surprise me if he makes the team, but will definitely be on the practice squad. Cam Sims seems to be on the outside looking in and he had a horrible night to boot. His chances are slim.
Tight Ends- 3
Jordan Reed, Vernon Davis, Jeremey Sprinkle. This was already predetermined. Not the best blockers but exceptional receivers.
Offensive Line- 9
Donald Penn, Ereck Flowers, Chase Rouiller, Brandon Scherff, Morgan Moses, Geron Christian, Wes Martin, Ross Pierschbacher, Tony Bergstrom. This is the shakiest unit on the team by far, but there are some talented pieces. Penn should over take Christian as the starter at left tackle, Flowers will be the initial starter at left guard. Do not be surprised if the Redskins add another lineman who is not currently on this roster.
Defensive Line- 5
Jonathan Allen, Da’Ron Payne, Matt Ioannids, Tim Settle, Caleb Brantley. This group was locked in early and the starters and principal backups settled. Being a 3-4 team doesn’t justify a 6th roster spot, so that can be used elsewhere on the team.
Ryan Kerrigan, Jon Bostic, Shaun Dion Hamilton, Ryan Anderson, Montez Sweat, Cole Holcomb, Josh Harvey-Clemons, Cassanova McKinzy. This group is pretty much locked in with Anderson starting over Sweat in the base defense. Only question mark is health with McKinzy suffering a concussion in last night’s game. With ten days off before the Philadelphia game, he should be good to go.
Josh Norman, Quinton Dunbar, Fabian Moreau, Dominique Rodger-Cromartie, Greg Stroman, Jimmy Moreland. This group has solidified itself with Moreland as the new emergence. Rodgers-Cromartie may get the least playing time in the group but will be valuable insurance. With Danny Johnson returns Rodgers-Cromartie or even Stroman will need to watch themselves.
Landon Collins, Montae Nicholson, Deshazor Everett, Troy Apke, Jeremey Reaves. With the McCoy to IR placement, that leaves an extra spot which can be given to Reaves. The only four were solidly on the team.
Dustin Hopkins, Tress Way, Nick Sundberg– No changes here.
Offense-25, Defense-25, Specialists-3