September 26, 2020

Washington Redskins: Week 1 Wednesday Press Conference Wrap Up

Prior to the Washington Redskins Week 1 matchup against the Miami Dolphins, head coach Jay Gruden and starting quarterback Kirk Cousins spoke for the first time since Sunday.

First, and something we of course could not forget to mention, is the status of Robert Griffin III. The former franchise quarterback was against limited in practice as he is cleared for non-contact activity, while the team waits for written, not verbal, results of the tests he underwent a few days ago. The written report should come in with the next day or so. Since the organization cannot be sure that Griffin will be ready to backup Cousins on Sunday, the mentality is that Colt McCoy will be QB2 and the depth chart behind Cousins will work itself out once everyone is healthy.

The team is motivated by the poor outlook by various rankings for the franchise’s season. Silverback Trent Williams called that simply water cooler talk and not worth much. Williams would add that the team is used to the noise and that the players collectively do not believe that the sky-is-falling.

Now to the actual game that the Redskins are “excited” to kick off the season to try and get away from the drama around the organization.

Gruden said that the Redskins will try to keep the Dolphins defensive front, headlined by Ndamukong Suh, off balance by running the ball and executing quick passes. Kirk Cousins agreed with his coaches’ game plan by noting that the Dolphins’ defense does not have any real weaknesses because although the front is the key the secondary can make plays as well. The Dolphins secondary will be missing out on the services of safety Louis Delmas who torn his ACL earlier this offseason.

A matchup that might not be the greatest for the Redskins during the beginning of the season is the right side of the offensive line. Brandon Scherff and Morgan Moses have one NFL start between them and they will be going up against premier pass rushers in Suh and DE Cameron Wake. Kirk Cousins optimistaclly stated that he “feels really good about those two guys being on the line for a long time”. The hope is obviously that the Scherff and Moses tandem will be at least the same as least year’s Chris Chester and Tyler Polumbus and steadily improve as they get more and more experience.

As poor an outlook that befits the Redskins, it is hard to argue that they have not gotten more talented on both sides of the ball, much in thanks to the job of General Manager Scot McCloughan. Cousins concurred with this idea by stating that he feels like he has “all the pieces around him to be able to be successful” this season. The key for the Redskins, as Cousins mentioned, is that if the Redskins can run the ball well with their talented backs corps, “it’s going to bode well for our pass game”. Apart from Alfred Morris and rookie Matt Jones in the running game, it will be extremely important for Cousins’ to utilize the “uncoverable” DeSean Jackson if he plans on having success against the Dolphins and beyond.

Although the Redskins cut their roster to the regular season mandated limit of 53 players, a team can only have 45 active during any given football game. To fill the eight-man inactive list, Gruden noted that the defensive line rotation will be between five and six players, meaning it is probably that DE/NT Kedric Golston and/or DE Frank Kearse could find themselves in sweatpants Sunday afternoon.

One injury note is that backup tackle and blocking tight end Tom Compton was working on the side Wednesday while he nurses a calf injury. There is a concern that Compton will NOT be able to go Sunday. This  would lead to the Redskins pushing recently signed blocking TE Anthony McCoy, a former Scot McCloughan draft pick in Seattle, to learn the offense. Gruden also said that this will put “a lot” of pressure on Jordan Reed, not just to stay healthy, but execute at a high level on an extended number of reps during the game.

Some enemy intel comes with the Miami Dolphins expecting to have both their starting left tackle Branden Albert and first round wide receiver DeVante Parker. This will obviously lead to mismatches for the Redskins who will be without premier edge rusher Junior Galette for the season and nickle back Bashaud Breeland due to suspension.

For those who are interested the 2015 season captains, by units, for the Redskins this year (as voted on by players) include LT Trent Williams, FS DaShon Goldson, and P Tress Way.

Keep up to date on everything Redskins with daily postings from District Sports Page leading up to kickoff and instant analysis afterwards.

About Neil Dalal

Neil Dalal is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins, Wizards, and Maryland Terrapins. Neil grew up in Silver Spring, MD and attends the University of Maryland. Neil has loved everything related to the Redskins, Wizards, Capitals, and Terrapins since he was eight years old. However, he favors the Orioles, as he started watching baseball before the Expos moved to DC. You can follow Neil on Twitter @NeilDalal96.

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