It is now year three of the Mike Shanahan experience in Washington and after posting an 11-21 record in his first two season, the former Super Bowl winning coach must be hoping his third year in the Nation’s Capital will be the charm, as his time to rebuild the team into a contender is running out.
The Redskins were doomed in the first two seasons with Shanny at the helm because the quarterback situation has been terrible. First the Donovan McNabb experiment was an utter failure and last year the team essentially waived the white flag before the season started when it decided to go with John Beck and Rex Grossman at quarterback.
Yet, the Redskins are hoping they have finally turned the corner. The roster is solid and is finally starting to get some depth to it. More importantly though, Shanahan believes he finally has the franchise quarterback needed to seriously contend in the NFC East, as the team traded away four premium draft picks to the Rams to acquire Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin III of Baylor with the second pick in the 2012 NFL Draft.
RG3, as he is affectionately known, should come in and add an explosive element to the offense right away. The Redskins have worked hard to add weapons around him and for the most part have succeeded. The team has a group of solid running backs, highlighted by second-year player Roy Helu.
Washington also made waves in free agency by giving big money contracts to wide receivers Pierre Garcon of the Colts and Josh Morgan of the 49ers, in order to give RG3 some deep threats at wide receiver in order to best utilize his ability to stretch the field in the passing game.
The Redskins are also building a solid core group of players on defense led by Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan, two very good pass rushers. The defense also boasts Pro Bowl linebacker London Fletcher, as well as Barry Cofield inside at nose tackle and DeAngelo Hall at cornerback.
Overall, the Redskins appear to be finally headed in the right direction but whether or not that manifests itself as far as an increased win total in 2012 remains to be seen.
Here is a projection of what we believe the Redskins final 53-man roster will look like:
QB (3): Robert Griffin III, Rex Grossman, Kirk Cousins.
RB/FB (5): Roy Helu, Evan Royster, Tim Hightower, Alfred Morris, Darrel Young.
WR (6): Santana Moss, Pierre Garcon, Josh Morgan, Leonard Hankerson, Anthony Armstrong, Brandon Banks.
TE (3): Fred Davis, Chris Cooley, Logan Paulsen.
OL (9): Trent Williams, Kory Lichtensteiger, Will Montgomery, Chris Chester, Jammal Brown, Josh LeRibeus, Erik Cook, James Lee, Adam Gettis.
DL (6): Jarvis Jenkins, Barry Coefield, Stephen Bowen, Adam Carriker, Chris Neild, Kedric Golston.
LB (9): Brian Orakpo, Ryan Kerrigan, London Fletcher, Perry Riley, Markus White, Lorenzo Alexander, Jonathan Goff, Rob Jackson, Keenan Robinson.
DB (9): DeAngelo Hall, Josh Wilson, Brandon Meriweather, Tanard Jackson, Cedric Griffin, Morgan Trent, Madieau Williams, Reed Doughty, DeJon Gomes.
ST (3): Sav Rocca, Graham Gano, Nick Sundberg.