Change We Can Be Proud Of
The Washington Redskins have taken huge steps towards a valid rebuild in the last few weeks. The biggest and most obvious upgrade was at the quarterback position, where they not only added Robert Griffin III, but they also added a quality backup prospect when they drafted Michigan State quarterback Kirk Cousins in the 4th round of the draft. The Skins were then able to cut career backup quarterback John Beck, a player who in my opinion, had no business wearing the burgundy and gold, to begin with.
The Redskins have also had a major shortage of yard producing wide receivers in previous years and added Josh Morgan and Pierre Garcon to the mix in free agency this off-season. Signing Garcon gives the Redskins a young, up and coming receiver who is no stranger to the YAC (Yards After Catch) that they desperately need to aid the offense in scoring more points. Morgan has been near the top of many discussions the last few years thinking the young Virginia born receiver was near a breakout season; last year was a shortened one for him due to an ankle injury early on.
While the offensive line was nothing to write home about last season, injuries showed the world that not only was our 0-line painfully mediocre, it was also painfully thin with hardly any depth. To address the depth issue head-on, a pair of guards were drafted in Josh LeRibeus from SMU and Adam Gettis from Iowa as well as tackle Tom Compton from South Dakota. LeRibeus has already been used at rookie camp in a center role, showing his versatility at multiple positions could lead to him being used early and often.
All fans of the Redskins know that we have a strong front seven on the defensive side of the ball, though some could point out that the depth at the ILB position was very thin with only Lorenzo Alexander listed as a backup to London Fletcher and Perry Riley. The ‘Skins addressed that need by signing linebacker’s Jonathan Goff and Bryan Kehl and then drafting Keenan Robinson from Texas with their second pick in the 4th round of the draft. Robinson has the skill set to be groomed as a possible replacement for Fletcher in a couple of seasons.
The secondary may present the biggest problem/question mark on the entire Redskins team. Since last season the ‘Skins have added Brandon Meriweather, Tanard Jackson, Madieu Williams, Cedric Griffin, Leigh Torrence and drafted Jordan Bernstine from Iowa and Richard Crawford from SMU. Not to mention the signing of former UVa star corner-back Chase Minnifield, who went undrafted after being looked at as a third-round pick before surgery in January. Minnifield could very well be the steal of the draft.
Last year was focused on fixing a problematic defense, this year it appears as if the main focus has been providing depth at crucial positions and upgrading at the major skill spots. Coach Mike Shanahan has already announced that RG3 will be the starter from day one (as if we needed to hear that to know it). Those who wanted change in DC…it is here, and I for one think it’s change we can be proud of!