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5 Locks to Make the 53-Man Roster

With the first round of cuts completed, I'm ready to list my top five locks to make the opening 53-man roster. These guys began camp fighting for roster spots and would be on the team if the season began today. Barring injury or other unforeseen circumstances, my locks will be with the Redskins on Sept. 13 when they open against the New York Giants at Giants Stadium.

Wide receiver Marko Mitchell
The rookie opened eyes in training camp and has been the star of the preseason. Mitchell still needs a lot of work on special teams, and coach Danny Smith will tutor him throughout the regular season.

Tackle Mike Williams
I know, I know. Williams hasn't played in a regular-season game since 2005, has missed considerable practice time because of an abdominal strain and ankle injury and sat out the last game against the New England Patriots. But management has put a lot of time and resources into helping Williams drop about 80 pounds and regain his footwork and timing. Some in the organization believe Williams could move into the starting lineup early in the season. He can't do that if he isn't on the roster.

Defensive end/strong-side linebacker Chris Wilson
When I heard the Redskins planned to try Wilson as a linebacker this season, I figured his time with the team would soon end. Beginning only his third season in the league, Wilson still was learning his role as a hand-down rush specialist. Wilson, though, has impressed defensive coordinator Greg Blache, who is a hard guy to impress. Blache said Wilson still has a tendency to peek at the quarterback too much when he's in coverage, but that's to be expected of someone transitioning to a new position. Wilson also has continued to contribute on special teams, and Washington needs as much help as it can get on that front.

Guard/tackle Jeremy Bridges
Although the journeyman hasn't been dazzling in practice, the Redskins need his versatility and starting experience. In his first six seasons, Bridges appeared in 62 games, starting 39. He has started at tackle and guard. Pro Bowl left tackle Chris Samuels and right guard Randy Thomas have had knee issues in the preseason after having offseason knee surgery, and the coaching staff is convinced that Bridges could fill in well at right tackle if Stephon Heyer had to replace Samuels for an extended stretch. If second-year guard Chad Rinehart had to replace Thomas, Bridges would be Rinehart's primary backup.

Guard/center Will Montgomery
Again, it's all about versatility. Montgomery has played in 13 games, including six starts at guard. He has impressed coaches while working at center in training camp and the preseason, and provides depth behind starting center Casey Rabach. Former starting left guard Pete Kendall served as Rabach's backup last season, but none of this season's starters are adept at playing center, too. That's good news for Montgomery, who seized his opportunity early in camp.

By Jason Reid  |  August 31, 2009; 10:55 AM ET
Categories:  Jason Reid  
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Next: Special Teams Should Be Secondary for D. Thomas

Comments

la

Posted by: merajc86 | August 31, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Wow, I totally would have guessed Clinton Portis, Santana Moss, Albert Haynesworth, Laron Landry, and Chris Samuels

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Mike Williams? Shouldn't be a lock. Mgmt has to know if they're throwing good money after bad. I wish the big guy luck, but its not clear that he'll ever make it in this league again.

Posted by: zcezcest1 | August 31, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Wilson/Brideges/Montgomery were utter 'No Brainers'

Mike Williams to the PUP (Can we still do that?)

Here are my five locks (to be more daring):

Marko

Mason

Brennan

Tryon

Wynn

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 31, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

4th, Wynn?? Really?? I'd rather take a shot at Buzzbee or Jackson and see what they can do

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 31, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Durant Brooks was cut by the PAck

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 31, 2009 11:12 AM |

He was injured (again). Hip flexor.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

What's interesting is how the coaches opted to use the RBs in rotation on Friday. Mason was Portis' primary backup with the first team, with Betts only playing in clear passing situations. Mason also got the goal line carry, and played another 2 snaps in the redzone on the other TD drive (including on the actual TD). I'm not sure if that was Zorn's ploy for resting both Betts and Portis, but I do know that Betts was the punt protector for Smith on Friday night. Seems to me that it's very possible Zorn is looking at a 3-back rotation, with Betts taking Rocks' primary roles, and Mason taking the 'rest Portis' carries on not-so-obvious passing situations.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 11:05 AM

Good observation. Now if they can Aldridge 5-10 snaps a game I'd be ecstatic.

Posted by: TWISI | August 31, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: TWISI | August 31, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Mike Williams? Seriously? I didn't realize rapid weight loss was a football skill. Didn't seem to help his pass pro in camp, but OK.

If that's the case, how about a competition at kicker between Kirstie Alley and Oprah?

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 31, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

brown, where would Rock fit in on the pats, with the following RB's:

Fred Taylor
Laurence Maroney
Kevin Fault
Sammi Morris

He's a distant 5th to those guys

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 31, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

"Mike Williams? Shouldn't be a lock. Mgmt has to know if they're throwing good money after bad. I wish the big guy luck, but its not clear that he'll ever make it in this league again.Posted by: zcezcest1"

He may not, but I bet they take the chance.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 31, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Bean - Haven't heard enough good things about JAckson, so he might get caught in a numbers game. Unless they really need him for STs....

I think they want Wynn in there for leadership.....

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 31, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

"Rock was a top 10 KR guy last year -- you don't replace that unless you're sure you've got a significant upgrade.

Posted by: zcezcest1"

Rock was actually a tied for 10th in return average with 3 other players. Eight players that were either tied or ahead of him had TD returns. Five of those ahead of him were/are starters for their teams (Daniel Manning, Ellis Hobbs, Leodis Mckelvin, Eddie Royal, and Pierre Thomas), and 5 were big time contributors to offense/defense (Chris Carr, Leon Washington, Darren Sproles, Jerious Norwood, and Allen Rossum).

Only two players among that entire group played virtually no role on offense or defense; Rock Cartwright and Clifton Smith (TB). Clifton Smith was an undrafted FA, also returned punts, had 2 return TDs in 9 games overall, and was a pro-bowler.

Rock may be listed in the top 10 for kick return men, but he contributes the least amount to his team out of the entire group -- by far.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Greg, I think this new post was Reid's way of killing the Rock/Betts/Mason convo. Besides, I already retracted that comment in the last thread.

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 31, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

He may not, but I bet they take the chance.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 31, 2009 11:22 AM |

I agree. Good risk/reward ratio. Lot of upside, not much lost if he doesn't work out and they have to cut him. Besides, there's not much competition in camp for his spot. Maybe something will turn up on the waiver wire, but right now Big Mike looks like the best available.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Thing that interested me is the recurring theme that versatility makes the difference for a backup. Apply that to the skill positions to see who they might keep.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 31, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Actually, you can add Rossum to the list of guys that didn't contribute offensively or defensively, but did return punts as well.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Fred Taylor
Laurence Maroney
Kevin Fault
Sammi Morris

He's a distant 5th to those guys

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 31, 2009 11:22 AM

You forgot Benjarvus Green-Ellis who has been tearing it up with the backups.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | August 31, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

Wow, I totally would have guessed Clinton Portis, Santana Moss, Albert Haynesworth, Laron Landry, and Chris Samuels

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 11:09 AM |

From the RI article: "These guys began camp fighting for roster spots and would be on the team if the season began today."

I totally guess that you don't bother to read anything but headlines.

Posted by: ElDrano | August 31, 2009 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Tackle Mike Williams
I know, I know. Williams hasn't played in a regular-season game since 2005, has missed considerable practice time because of an abdominal strain and ankle injury and sat out the last game against the New England Patriots. But management has put a lot of time and resources into helping Williams drop about 80 pounds and regain his footwork and timing. Some in the organization believe Williams could move into the starting lineup early in the season. He can't do that if he isn't on the roster.

By Jason Reid | August 31, 2009; 10:55 AM ET

Whole different way of posting, J. Reid.

How would Jasno have written the same thing?

"After years of neglecting the O Line in the draft (unlike well managed teams like the Ravens) the 'Skins have no choice but to add this porker to their line. They went all in for Haynesworth in FA and couldn't extend an offer to any of the better talents out there. Now, their fortunes are riding with a guy who hasn't been in the league since the Obama daughters attended school in Chicago."

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 11:32 AM | Report abuse

"Mason's deficiencies in pass protection were among the main factors in his failure to make the roster out of the preseason in 2008. On Friday against the Patriots, Mason twice failed in blitz pick-ups. Game over."--RI The Mayor

Toughest comments I've seen here since JLaC left are aimed at a powerless RB about to be cut?

You may be right, but if Mason or Aldrige goes, that means Betts stays. And Betts has had one good year out of seven and couldn't find the end zone with GPS and a miner's lamp.

Betts apparently is the finest human being since Mother Theresa left, and a media darling, I just don't see his football upside.

Posted by: TheCork | August 31, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Mista Mayor,

Has Aldridge been any better at pass pro than Mason?

I think we need to have more than Portis-Betts-Rock. I think we need to either cut Rock or add Mason/Aldridge. Dorsey's a lost cause at this point.

Posted by: dmorgan6617 | August 31, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

"Posted by: ElDrano | August 31, 2009 11:31 AM"

Somebody was clearly devoid of all humor and sarcasm growing up.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 11:36 AM | Report abuse

From the RI article: "These guys began camp fighting for roster spots and would be on the team if the season began today."

I totally guess that you don't bother to read anything but headlines.

Posted by: ElDrano | August 31, 2009 11:31 AM

I don't think CWilson and Bridges were fighting for roster spots. It was stated from the getgo that BRidges would chalenge for the starting RT spot, not just a roster spot. And the same with CWilson. And Will Montgomery was already receiving praise.

So, I agree with Brownwood....JReid trynig to flip the convo away from Rock bashing. Must want him to stay on the team as an unnamed source......Connect the Dots....The article started out as a MMason bashing Post...And ended up a cut Rock comments section......

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 31, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

right now Big Mike looks like the best available.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 11:25 AM

Actually, I'd take Levi Jones over The Incredible Shrinking Tackle. But maybe that's just me...

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 31, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

And Betts ... couldn't find the end zone with GPS and a miner's lamp.

Posted by: TheCork | August 31, 2009 11:33 AM

Is this supposed to be a knock? Because it's tough enough getting in with just a football. How you expect him to carry a GPS and a lamp, too? Man, that's got to slow you down.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Some in the organization believe Williams could move into the starting lineup early in the season. He can't do that if he isn't on the roster.--RI, The Mayor

If Williams is a "lock" to make the roster, it means the recession has finally gotten to Danny and he can't afford to cut a guy who only eats six carrots and a piece of swordfish at the training table.

Posted by: TheCork | August 31, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Actually, I'd take Levi Jones over The Incredible Shrinking Tackle. But maybe that's just me...

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 31, 2009 11:37 AM

I think it is just you. No one in the league has been willing to pay what that guy's demanding. I don't think the 'Skins could even fit him under the cap.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

...how about a competition at kicker between Kirstie Alley and Oprah?

Posted by: brownwood26 |

Not gonna happen. Oprah's got a hip flexor and Kirstie has fallen and can't get up.

Posted by: TheCork | August 31, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

I think it is just you. No one in the league has been willing to pay what that guy's demanding. I don't think the 'Skins could even fit him under the cap.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse


I think he's looking for 5 million a year and the Skins only have 2 million left. BMW is a good run blocker. Right now he's better than Jansen was last year. BMW will get better at pass blocking. Once he does that then he will be better than Stephon Heyer. I think they need to keep him at least for short yardage situations. I think that cutting Devin Clark is a sign that BMW is the backup tackle on this team.

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | August 31, 2009 11:43 AM | Report abuse

TE - JReid is all in with Cerrato. What source do you think is feeding him the info on MW345? Using words like 'Resources invested' is clearly from MAnagement. And we all know that Cerrato and JReid have a great working relationship established by the peace offering of JLaC being moved to the NFLN......

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 31, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

I think it is just you. No one in the league has been willing to pay what that guy's demanding. I don't think the 'Skins could even fit him under the cap.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 11:40 AM

I'm pretty sure that was the word on Edgerrin and he found work. I wasn't necessarily saying he was more affordable than Big Mike, just that I think he's better.

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 31, 2009 11:45 AM | Report abuse

My question is, with DThomas looking good at returning kicks, and paying him a lot of money to be a 3rd WR... and Aldridge and mason providing more RB skill... could rock be gone?

He is the devil on coverage teams, but what else?

Posted by: Zeebs | August 31, 2009 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Betts had one good season. And we should have traded him for a second round pick after. I don't see his upside. Alridge/Dorsey/Mason all have potential. We need speed. One of those guys has to stay. We need Cartwright on special teams. Why not go a little thin at linebacker since Orakpo/Wilson play de/lb? If we have injuries there we could pull Henson/Glenn off the practice squad. Other teams keep 5-6 rbs, i see no reason why shouldn't.

Posted by: brian58 | August 31, 2009 11:45 AM | Report abuse

I think they want Wynn in there for leadership.....

Posted by: 4thFloor

Not just that, 4th, I think Daniels has shown the importance of a run stuffing LDE in Blache's scheme, and he's no spring chicken. If he gets hurt, there isn't really any backup for Phillip. Based on that, I think Wynn has a good shot.

But then, this is the team that tried to replace Daniels last year with a 242 pound Tango specialist,.

Posted by: TheCork | August 31, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

FootballOutsiders uses a complex system for evals of special teams. As far as the return game, the look at it solely on return yardage. Then they adjust for weather and altitude based on the week the game was played and on stadium type (cold, warm, dome, and Denver). The Skins’ ‘08 return average was 7.7 for kickoffs -0.6 for punts, To put that in perspective, the league’s best KO return game was Buffalo at 17.3 and the worst Detroit at –13.2. The Skins were in the top half of the league. On punt returns, the best was Oakland at 15.2 and the worst Indy at –10. Here, Washington finished in the bottom half of the NFL, but not by a whole lot.

IMO, that suggests the team keep a punt returner – one of those two speed guys, for instance – and guys who can help on the return teams. ARE could go back to playing receiver full-time. Along with getting snaps from the slot, that might really help him become more productive.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 31, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

"And we should have traded him for a second round pick after"

Good call. We should trade him for Brady right now, because at this point, Brady is damaged goods.

There was NEVER, nor will there EVER be a team that was offering a 2nd for betts back then, so just stop......

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 31, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

I agree with the posts about Betts/Cartwright. We need a fast change of pace back. Neither of those dudes can take it to the house. We need that. Mason seems to have a nack for the goal line. We need that bad. He can be tought to pick up blitzers. If he or one of the other small faster backs do not make the squad, we will suffer running the ball inside the 10.

Posted by: FedorEm | August 31, 2009 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Daniels is looking like a real BEAST out there...I forgot to mention....He's Not playing like his age at all...

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 31, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

But then, this is the team that tried to replace Daniels last year with a 242 pound Tango specialist,.


some things are tough to let go right corky....

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 31, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

He can be taught. Oops guess I rode the short bus to school.

Posted by: FedorEm | August 31, 2009 11:51 AM | Report abuse

By the way, overall the Skins special teams ranked 25th using the FootballOutsiders system (down from 16th the season before). The FG kicking seemed to be a negative factor.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 31, 2009 11:52 AM | Report abuse

If we have injuries there we could pull Henson/Glenn off the practice squad. Other teams keep 5-6 rbs, i see no reason why shouldn't.

Posted by: brian58 | August 31, 2009 11:45 AM

But according to the Rock bashers here, those guys are already on the roster playing special teams to help offset the loss of Rock. Oh well, I'm sure there's some undrafted slappy at LB who's from the area that everyone will fall in love with and demand we play instead of London Fletcher.

(in the gruff, Al Pacino voice)
Everytime I get out of the Rock conversation, they pull...me...back...in!

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 31, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

MIKE WILLIAMS is the only one I wouldn't roll with. I'm sure SNYDER has said we got him for a reason; give him more time. But the big man's body has to catch-up to the weight loss, and the NFL is NOT the place for that to happen. Expect nagging injury after nagging injury if he's left on the roster.

I was calling WIL MONTGOMERY's name in the off-season. I saw him at VT. He's the real deal and will provide fine depth at C and long snapper if needed.

JEREMY BRIDGES has been disappointing in games the few plays that I have been able to locate him. Saw him whiff at LT or LG on a run-play block to the right side last time out. Maybe I've been missing his good plays. Unimpressive so far.

If MARKO MITCHELL isn't on the 53 man there is NO justice in the world, special teams player or not. This young man is KEENAN McCARDELL waiting to happen. Remember when we kept DESMOND HOWARD and let MAC go? No wait, I say he's better than McCARDELL was when he was drafted. 'Nuff said.

CHRIS WILSON is making the transition from down lineman to standup LB. His coverage in space needs work, but you see his number time and again during the games. Sometimes trailing plays, but around the ball.

ROB JACKSON and ALEX BUZBEE are both playing O.K., but I see them as the odd men out in this scenerio. They have talent, but unfortunately are competing where the team strength now is - d-line.

I think ANTHONY MONTGOMERY's spot on this roster is also in jeopardy. He has not excelled and has had much pt. LORENZO ALEXANDER continues to improve and impress.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 31, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

By the way, overall the Skins special teams ranked 25th using the FootballOutsiders system (down from 16th the season before). The FG kicking seemed to be a negative factor.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 31, 2009 11:52 AM

I'm sure that has more to do with the punting and kicking than it did anything in the return game or coverage units. Hopefully, we'll see that go up this year.

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 31, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Interestingly, the FG kicking also seemed to be a negative factor in the games, beyond its impact on that ranking.

Posted by: NateinthePDX | August 31, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

glawrence007,

Dude, I gotta ask...what's up with the ALL CAPS on players names?

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 31, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Auditioning for the Reliable Source column?

Posted by: Original_etrod | August 31, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I agree we need to find a way at all cost to keep Alridge and Mason on the team. They will help out a great deal. And like many have stated before SPEED KILLS!!!! Alridge might be the fastest guy I have seen on a football field in a long time. And I think with BO and CW playing LB/DE that should open up a roster spot or 2 those RB's to make the 53 man roster.

Posted by: gcoles32 | August 31, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

glawrence007 - You were good untill you said Anthony Montgomery won't make it....

He's automatic to make it...

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 31, 2009 12:06 PM | Report abuse

I agree we need to find a way at all cost to keep Alridge and Mason on the team. They will help out a great deal. And like many have stated before SPEED KILLS!!!! Alridge might be the fastest guy I have seen on a football field in a long time. And I think with BO and CW playing LB/DE that should open up a roster spot or 2 those RB's to make the 53 man roster.

Posted by: gcoles32 | August 31, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

"Some in the organization believe Williams could move into the starting lineup early in the season."

This suggests some in the organization still don't believe Heyer is a bonafide starting NFL tackle.

Posted by: Alan4 | August 31, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

I kind of LIKE it.

It ATTRACTS the eye.

Posted by: farstriker | August 31, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

And Betts ... couldn't find the end zone with GPS and a miner's lamp.

Posted by: TheCork | August 31, 2009 11:33 AM

Is this supposed to be a knock? Because it's tough enough getting in with just a football. How you expect him to carry a GPS and a lamp, too? Man, that's got to slow you down.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 11:37 AM |

It also helps to have a road-grader lineman that can open up a little daylight for the dude to work with.

Posted by: ElDrano | August 31, 2009 12:08 PM | Report abuse

it's easy to say those guys will make it, but who is getting cut to make room for those guys?

If Mitchell makes it Yoder's gone, if Mason makes it Cartwright or Betts is gone, oops he didn't pick Mason

here is my checklist:

the haters have been hating on Campbell. Campbell produced as much as Tom Brady and controlled the end of the half.

the haters have been hating on Kelly. Kelly created mismatches in coverage that I haven't seen on the Redskins since Art Monk was in his prime and seemed to dominate despite only having 1 catch.

the haters have been hating on D. Thomas. Thomas out-produced Kelly, made some tough catches in traffic, and looked solid as a KR. Thomas appears to really enjoy contact.

I know it's only pre-season and it's a long season, but I'm going out on a limb and saying the haters don't know what they are talking about and are projecting they're miserable lives onto the redskins players.

I think Mitchell will be on the practice squad and I think Mason has a chance to get Cartwright's spot and Thomas will be the KR

Posted by: pabrian2003 | August 31, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

This suggests some in the organization still don't believe Heyer is a bonafide starting NFL tackle.

Posted by: Alan4 | August 31, 2009 12:07 PM

Which I've said before. Yet I'm supposed to believe that Williams is somehow a better option at RT than Jon Jansen...

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 31, 2009 12:12 PM | Report abuse

it seems really obvious to me that betts is no playmaker. portis is declining (though still money with a great desire to score touchdowns) as a playmaker. how's rocks burst? we desperately need either a guy like mason (burst through the holes, and hits them), or aldrige (SPEED) to be a threat to go the distance when he get past the line.

I'm just saying

Posted by: bryaningrocery | August 31, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

"Some in the organization believe Williams could move into the starting lineup early in the season."

This suggests some in the organization still don't believe Heyer is a bonafide starting NFL tackle.

Posted by: Alan4 | August 31, 2009 12:07 PM

Or it suggest a psycological tactic by Cerrato through JReid to keep Heyer on his toes.

As they did with Cutler and Sanchez to JCampbell. They never had the draft picks to get Cutty, nor Sanchez....

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 31, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

I think Mitchell will be on the practice squad and I think Mason has a chance to get Cartwright's spot and Thomas will be the KR

Posted by: pabrian2003 | August 31, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

To add someone to the practice squad, you have to first cut them, then wait for them to clear waivers. Mitchell would be picked up by someone immediately if he were cut.

Posted by: Original_etrod | August 31, 2009 12:14 PM | Report abuse

do the math if we keep alridge and mason we have to cut Betts and Cartwright.

I was impressed by both but alridge was out there at the time when gaping holes were being opened up by both teams.

Marko Mitchell and Marcus Mason are both exciting prospects, but the reality is to keep Mitchell you's have to cut Yoder, and to keep Mason you'd have to cut Betts or Cartwright. those are risky moves for the offense and ST.

Posted by: pabrian2003 | August 31, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

psps -- on Rock and returns, I'm not concerned that Rock didn't take 1 to the house in 2008. Even the best KRs don't get one every year. Just 11 were returned for a TD last year. As for other guys that multi-task in addition to KR, Rock is among them. He plays on most of the other special teams.

Generally speaking, you don't want an every down player returning punts or kicks -- too much injury risk. Even Hester is mostly out of the PR/KR stuff -- and he was the best I'd ever seen just a couple years ago.

Posted by: zcezcest1 | August 31, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Original_etrod

good point, and with our luck it would be someone in our division, do you think he is more valueable than Yoder?

Posted by: pabrian2003 | August 31, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Mitchell is clearly on the opening day roster. He was running routes with the first team on Friday night, with a full compliment of receivers with which to choose from. The only way he isn't is if he gets significantly hurt, at which point, he'll go on IR. Zorn won't say it because he won't announce to Hackett/Eloi that they're essentially done, but Mitchell is already on the roster.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 12:18 PM | Report abuse

It's scary to me that 3 of our "locks" to make the team are pretty iffy back up O-line. None of these guys have impressed, but they're locks because we have no one else behind our starters, who lets pray to god stay healthy this year.

Posted by: dshockey | August 31, 2009 12:18 PM | Report abuse

I don't think we'd have to cut Yoder. We had 5 receivers last year as well. The decision will be 5 receiviers or 4 RB's. I'd take Marko over Mason.

Posted by: Original_etrod | August 31, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Someone please explain to me why people keep saying that we would have to cut Yoder to keep Mitchell? We keep 5 wrs on this team... Mitchell would be the 5th... Why is Yoder involved at all?

Posted by: peoplearestupid1 | August 31, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

4th floor:

I don't know - just a hunch. I'm not sure AM is happy with his lessor role on this team. His body language looks more like he's going through the numbers. I peg him as a guy that the more you need him the better he is, but gets discouraged easily. There aren't many coaches who want that type of player. But maybe I'm wrong. He is the type of player that can kick solid play into excellent with desire.

Now ALEXANDER's motor is always on, and the improvement at DT shows. I hear shouts of encouragement both on and off the field for him when he makes a play.

brownie:

Kind of a signature. If it bugs you sorry. Don't mean anything by it. Post up a lot with the ALTANTA BRAVES and just got in the habit of capping people's names and words of emphasis.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 31, 2009 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: zcezcest1

i agree about KR and ST, but Thomas if he is a #4 WR can return kicks and has proven to make tackles on ST as well.

people are worrying about Portis turning 30 in a couple years, but Betts and Cartwright are both already there.

May the best players win.

Posted by: pabrian2003 | August 31, 2009 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Running stats last year:

Rock - 5 carries/14 yards (1 pass for -7)
Betts - 61/206 (22/200)
Portis - 342/1487 (28/218)

They could stick Rock Hudson in there and almost get the same rushing production as Rock Cartright. He has had a total of 12 carries over the last 3 seasons including the 2006 season where Portis was out a large chunk. Remember that last year Portis was going to be used less too. The fact of the matter is that someone that gets 1% of the carries is not making the team on his rushing production. The question is can Rock make the team on his ST performance, as he has since he has been here?

Rock averaged 25.6 on his returns last year and has a 24.4 career avg. This preseason, its 21. Devin Thomas is averaging 27.3 this preseason. The problem is that nobody has more than 4 returns this preseason. The other guys who are returning so far this year are Eloi and Dorsey. Assuming that DT is potentially a starter, the calculation as to Rock/Mason making the team seems to rely on if Eloi or Dorsey make the cut since nobody else is returning (including Mason) and secondarily if they can get anywhere near the return production of Rock. I think that bodes well for Rock and not for Mason - he just does not have anything to add to the team other than running which we don't need him for and we have no better option at returning than Rock (which Mason is not doing).

Posted by: amaranthpa | August 31, 2009 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Montgomery has not impressed and Zo and Golston have looked pretty good. Daniels looked awesome when he lined up at DT.

Given Haynesworth and Griffen's injury history, it'd be nice to have Monty waiting in the wings

Posted by: pabrian2003 | August 31, 2009 12:25 PM | Report abuse

"I'm sure that has more to do with the punting and kicking than it did anything in the return game or coverage units.Posted by: brownwood26"

The kickoffs were actually OK, in spite of the few touchbacks, but the best FG performance was Detroit at 10.7 (dome team). The Skins were near the bottom of the league, right above Denver. As for punting, FO has the Ravens at the top (20.9) and the Skins again next to last (-13.7). However, the Vikes' punters are scored at an incredible -24.6 -- what the heck happened in Minnesota?

Either way, the kicking game needed beaucoup assistance.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 31, 2009 12:25 PM | Report abuse

that's the thing about Rock is he is strictly a ST at this point in his career. He is a great STeamer though and our ST's are ???

Posted by: pabrian2003 | August 31, 2009 12:27 PM | Report abuse

People keep overlooking the fact that the NFL has banned the wedge on Kick returns. This means that you need an explosive returner, not a guy who simply runs hard to the wedge which is what Rock does.

I like the guy, but he should not be on the team and if we need him, he is a phone call away.

Posted by: keino83 | August 31, 2009 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Got ya gl007....

If that's the case (as his inattentiveness has been his biggest prob), then he is really messing hinself up....He could be the next HAynesworth with his size. HE has quick feet like Haynesworth...

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 31, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

I don't think we'd have to cut Yoder. We had 5 receivers last year as well. The decision will be 5 receiviers or 4 RB's. I'd take Marko over Mason.

Posted by: Original_etrod | August 31, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse


Actually last year on the opening roster there were 24 on Offense, and 26 on defense, so based on last year's roster they can open up a spot or two this year because of the versatility of the defensive players.

Posted by: TWISI | August 31, 2009 12:30 PM | Report abuse

And Betts ... couldn't find the end zone with GPS and a miner's lamp.

Posted by: TheCork | August 31, 2009 11:33 AM

Is this supposed to be a knock?

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 11:37 AM |
----------------------------

No. It's supposed to be cute. As in "gee, Momma, look at my clever turn of phrase!"

John D. MacDonald had nothing but contempt for such hackery, and I share his view on that.

Posted by: MrRedskin21 | August 31, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

zce - In 183 returns over his career, Rock has scored 1 TD. He's not an elite return man.

Devin Hester had 31 kick returns last year. Rock had 51. And the reason Chicago opted to rest Hester a bit? Daniel Manning was their other option, and he led the league in return averages.

Most of the guys that return kicks as their primary job also return punts. Rock does not. He helps on the return unit -- but it also happens to be one of the worst return units in the league. And Rock is far less multidimensional than any of the guys above him. Yes, he performs on different special teams units, but so does every one of the other guys listed above him -- who also play either offensively or defensively, in multiple different capacities. Lorenzo Alexander and Mike Sellars are multi-dimensional players on special teams. Rock Cartwright is about as uni-dimensional as you'll get in this league.

This team invests WAAAY too much in pure special teamers, especially for a team that isn't particularly good at it. Some teams use a pure long snapper, some teams use pure return men, some teams use pure gunners, but very few teams use up roster spots for ALL of them without said players really providing any other contribution. Part of the reason the Skins lacked depth across a lot of positions was because roster spots were being taken up by the likes of James Thrash, Rock Cartwright, Ethan Albright, Alfred Fincher, and Khary Campbell. That's way too many spots being taken up for an arguably very poor unit. And we've already essentially been told that Glenn and Henson will be taking two of those vacated spots, with Albright likely taking another.

If this was a top, dynamic special teams unit that helped win games, then I'd agree that you wouldn't mess with it. But it isn't. At best, it's middle-of-the-road. I have zero problem with Rock getting the axe. Zero at all.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 12:35 PM | Report abuse

I think Mitchell will be on the practice squad ...

Posted by: pabrian2003 | August 31, 2009 12:10 PM |
Kelly and Thomas.

And I think you need to be on the RI practice blog. And speaking of WRs, the Eagles are going to be a real handful with McNabb throwing to Machlin and Jackson. Machlin could be a beast.

Posted by: ElDrano | August 31, 2009 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Devin thomas can return kickoffs, he did just fine against the pats. this frees us up on rock. we need to score more points and be more explosive. rock gets caught from behind way too much for me anyway.

imho

Posted by: bryaningrocery | August 31, 2009 12:37 PM | Report abuse

4th floor:

Was gonna' say I was "down" with that, but based on your blog-signature "up" would be most appropriate. He could be a dominant player; we've both seen it on occasion. Not sure what would set him off, and I'm positive it perplexes the coaching staff all the time.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 31, 2009 12:38 PM | Report abuse

4th floor:

If GRIFF goes down this season I would love to see MONTGOMERY step up and take over.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 31, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

HAve JFK's eternal flamed moved permanantly to Anthony Montgomery's A$$.....

That way the fire will always be lit w/o the coaches have to be under his big SJK....

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 31, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Lorenzo Alexander's versatility makes Yoder expendable. Alexander can play the 3rd TE role on short yardage. Carrying only two TE's will allow the Skins to keep 5 RBs as long as they can perform on special teams, especially coverage which is the weak spot. Rock is a lock and Mason, Aldridge and Dorsey are in a battle. It looks to me like Dorsey has the edge based on punt return ability. Agnone or Eddie Williams will be the back-up 3rd TE on the practice squad. Right now it looks like Williams has the edge because he got a nice review on the Skins website. I do not believe Mike Williams can make the 53 man squad. He has too far to go but maybe he will resign later in the year. He needs a lot more reps in pass protection and he is still too weak and injured to practice, much less play. I think Chris Wilson was always a lock after they let Demetric Evans go so it is not a surprise, but it is a surprise how well he has played at LB.

Posted by: iseyij | August 31, 2009 12:47 PM | Report abuse

If this was a top, dynamic special teams unit that helped win games, then I'd agree that you wouldn't mess with it. But it isn't. At best, it's middle-of-the-road. I have zero problem with Rock getting the axe. Zero at all.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 12:35 PM

Second that.

Posted by: stevek20147 | August 31, 2009 12:47 PM | Report abuse

psps -- love the passion, not on board with you. Measuring KR for TDs is a bit like measure pitchers by no hitters. Its really about average and field position, and we did well on that front last year, with Rock. I'm not against upgrading there ... I am saying that replacing a top 10 KR shouldn't be done lightly. And from what I've seen so far, no one has convinced me that they will be better.

Also, the #3 RB spot on this team isn't really about being the #3 RB. Its about 'what else can you do?'

Posted by: zcezcest1 | August 31, 2009 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Stop making sense, Zz!

Posted by: DikShuttle | August 31, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Question, can you sign your own guy off your own practice squad mid-season?

Posted by: DikShuttle | August 31, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

This suggests some in the organization still don't believe Heyer is a bonafide starting NFL tackle.

Posted by: Alan4 | August 31, 2009 12:07 PM


I think it suggests that they are hedging their bets that Samuels and/or Thomas is not going to play 16 games.

Posted by: learnedhand1 | August 31, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

I think it suggests that they are hedging their bets that Samuels and/or Thomas is not going to play 16 games.

Posted by: learnedhand1 | August 31, 2009 12:55 PM

...except Williams stinks at OG and hasn't played much LT. His strongest position is RT, which is why I think Heyer is the reason The Mayor says, "Some in the organization believe Williams could move into the starting lineup early in the season."

Posted by: Alan4 | August 31, 2009 1:01 PM | Report abuse

"Measuring KR for TDs is a bit like measure pitchers by no hitters.

Also, the #3 RB spot on this team isn't really about being the #3 RB. Its about 'what else can you do?'

Posted by: zcezcest1"

Nah, it's more like measuring a slugger by his home runs. Starting at the 26 yard-line instead of the 23 yard-line isn't going to make the difference in a scoring drive. Going the distance every once in a while will.

As for the #3 RB argument; that's what has to change. There WAS no #3 RB last year. It didn't exist. When Ladell Betts went down, they actually had to go outside the organization to find a replacement. Rock Cartwright was as much of a #3 RB as Ethan Albright was a back-up center. And that shouldn't be acceptable, for any team. You need a versatile player in that spot, and inherent to that versatility is the ability to play on offense. Either Rock can't, or he wasn't trusted enough to even attempt it. Either way, that's not good enough.

Betts can and has done everything Rock was doing last season. The Redskins never gained anything by switching Rock to return duties. He maintained what we had, but he wasn't a revelation and didn't become irreplaceable.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 1:03 PM | Report abuse

On Rock, mostly saying that he has earned that job and done it well. So if someone is going to take it from him -- in shouldn't be in a split decision. Gotta really win it to take it from him.

If Thomas or Aldridge is notably better, yes, we make the change. I haven't seen enough where I make that judgment.

Posted by: zcezcest1 | August 31, 2009 1:05 PM | Report abuse

What happened to that undrafted Center from Maryland, Edwin Williams? I swear I haven't heard anything about him all summer.

Posted by: ga8085 | August 31, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Eight-man Practice Squad
# After each team has finalized its 53-man roster, every team in the league has 24 hours to sign any player who has been waived. Once this 24-hour period has passed, each team may sign up to eight players to form its developmental practice squad. These eight players practice with the team, but they are ineligible to participate in games unless they are added to the official 53-man roster (in the place of another player, of course). Teams may sign a player from another team's practice squad only if they immediately add the player to the 53-man roster.

Posted by: slimbo-Rice | August 31, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

...except Williams stinks at OG and hasn't played much LT. His strongest position is RT, which is why I think Heyer is the reason The Mayor says, "Some in the organization believe Williams could move into the starting lineup early in the season."

Posted by: Alan4 | August 31, 2009 1:01 PM | Report abuse


The idea is that if Samuels goes down Heyer moves to LT and BMW takes Heyer's RT spot. We have no true backup LT.

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | August 31, 2009 1:12 PM | Report abuse

"If Thomas or Aldridge is notably better, yes, we make the change. I haven't seen enough where I make that judgment."

Ah, this is where the connection is missing between us.

You think we're arguing for an upgrade at the KR spot. That's not where the gain lies. If Thomas/Aldridge are even close to Rock in this department, the team has already upgraded, because whoever takes his spot as the #3 RB (be it Mason or Aldridge) have clearly shown themselves to be better at that spot, now as well as in the future.

Essentially, if Rock wants to keep his KR/#3 RB spot, he better show that he is REALLY that much better as a returner. To this point, he hasn't.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

psps -- Pretty clear that Rock wasn't trusted by mgmt to be the 3rd RB. That is a good point and it doesn't bode well for Rock.

Mgmt trusted the tip-toe burglar. Why? Can't tell you -- but I'd be pretty sure Rock woulda done better.

As for going the distance, only 1/3 of the teams in the league had one taken to the house.

Just curious, how would you measure a KR? Avg, field position, fumbles ...

Posted by: zcezcest1 | August 31, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

As for KR for TDs, you said Rock had 1 in 180 something returns. As a Redskin, Brian Mitchell had 2 KR for TDs in about 400 attempts. Just saying that KRs for TDs don't come easy or often. That's why its hard to judge on that stat

Posted by: zcezcest1 | August 31, 2009 1:16 PM | Report abuse

From what I have seen, I think Marko has earned a starting position next to Moss. I can't even believe there is a discussion about making the team??!!!

I am not sure why it is so hard for this team to play the BEST player at any position and not worry about contracts, feelings etc.. Unreal!

Posted by: slimbo-Rice | August 31, 2009 1:18 PM | Report abuse

The idea is that if Samuels goes down Heyer moves to LT and BMW takes Heyer's RT spot. We have no true backup LT.

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | August 31, 2009 1:12 PM

Makes some sense... but maybe I'm a litlle hung up on the phrase, "Williams could move into the starting lineup early in the season."

Why would they predict an injury early in the season?

Doesn't it sound more like, "once BMW is healthy enough, we're going to make a change?" Isn't this exactly what happened to Jon Jansen last year at that position?

Posted by: Alan4 | August 31, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Mike Williams a lock to make the roster? He hasn't been healthy all through camp, looked overmatched in both practice and the two games he played with the 2nd unit, and hasn't played in a regular season game in 3 years. I like his story and the fact that he's lost almost 100 lbs., but he was a bust with Buffalo and he's done nothing to show he should be on 53-man roster. Bridges should be the backup RT and the Skins should consider signing another veteran FA tackle after the cuts if they still feel they need depth on the O-Line.

As for Rock, I really like the guy and he's a strong special teams player, but it looks like the Skins could get as much or more productivity on kickoff returns out of Devin Thomas. Based on the Skins signing Sean Alexander midseason last year when Betts got hurt, it was pretty obvious that Rock isn't viewed as a viable option as the third RB. If that's the case, then the Skins need to make the move to either keep Dorsey, Mason, or Aldridge as the 3rd RB.

You don't keep a RB as a special teams player to cover punts and kickoffs if he's not going to have any role in the offense or in returning punts/kicks.

Posted by: wizfan89 | August 31, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

"Just curious, how would you measure a KR? Avg, field position, fumbles ...

Posted by: zcezcest1"

The most important things are ball security and long gains. Ball security is a must. Rock was extremely good with this. I can't remember the last time he fumbled.

After that, it's long gains/TDs. If you're not a threat to take it the distance, you're pretty much lumped into an entire group of individuals that are all on pretty much the same level. As I stated earlier, a 3-5 yard difference in field position isn't really going to make the difference, especially if it's between the 20 and 30 yard lines. I know that Rock had at least one long return last season, which was good, but nothing spectacular. In the end, he's closer to the group of "just guys" around the league than he is to the guys that have truly separated themselves as elite return men. And that's not enough to save a roster spot for, IMO.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

it seems like a lot of fans even one's who know the game well, reduce themselves to understanding only TD's. Fan is short for fanatic, but there is so much more to the game than just TD's.

KR and PR I think are measured mostly by consistency and reliability. My Grandad use to yell, " just catch the ball you bum!" regardless of who was fielding the punt.

At the end of the year most KR's don't have any TD's and most PR's have at least 1 fumble.

Posted by: pabrian2003 | August 31, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

The reason BMW is gonna be kept is because we need everyone we can get on the O-Line, no shock there...

Count me as one who will be surprised if we keep Mason, though we should. At some point soon Portis is going to hit the wall, and Betts hasn't done much of anything over the past few seasons other than fumble. And if my memory serves correct, doesn't he struggle in pass protection as well?

Posted by: mattylight | August 31, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

@psps23

EXACTLY it isn't about rock being a good or bad KR. it is simply about rock being no change of pace at all from betts. he is almost like a betts clone. lets get an upgrad at RB3. a change of pace/gamebreaker guy. maybe even for 3 downs over betts eventually. I want to see what mason can do in the NFC East.

Posted by: bryaningrocery | August 31, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

ZZ, what did I tell you about that??

I think we had the Rock/BMitch discussion the last time BMitch blew a gasket on air... (so that makes it, what, last week?!?) or sometime...

Anyway, we thoroughly presented the case for Cartwright & the trade/cut-niks would not abate for any logic.

So I hear ya. While I enjoyed the pre-season shenanigans of our Redskin underlings, cutting off a proven return guy who's ok at 3rd string RB for complete newbie question marks.. at 3rd string RB!!!! just doesn't make too much sense.

... on the bright side, it beats the JC17 crying.. lmao. I mean if the best we can kvetch is for stinking 3rd string RB

Posted by: DikShuttle | August 31, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Looks like Philly's going to blow itself up this year. McNabb's putting Vick down again saying, "Before you can come up with gimmicks, before you can come up with something else, you got to get your base offense going."

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/category/rumor-mill/

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 31, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

psps -- so you'd look for a stat like, how often does the guy get us the ball to midfield, or something like that? Would you also look at a stat that asks how many times is he caught inside the 15?

I've never seen this type of stat, though someone probably has it somewhere.

Posted by: zcezcest1 | August 31, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Folks, some of you are still debating whether BMW belongs on the roster... read the quote, "Some in the organization believe Williams could move into the starting lineup early in the season."

Starting. Not backing up, starting. Early in the season. Starting early in the season.

Not just top 53, but one of 11 starters on the offensive side of the ball. Early in the season.

There's obviously something about the current O-line "starters" (they're talking to you, Heyer!) they don't feel comfortable with.

Posted by: Alan4 | August 31, 2009 1:30 PM | Report abuse

I get how some might want a little more out of the return game with Rock, but personally I'll settle for someone who doesn't make the critical turnover in a tight game on special teams, and Rock does a great job of holding onto the ball...

Posted by: mattylight | August 31, 2009 1:30 PM | Report abuse

PSP, you are killing it today...keep preaching the Gospel.

I have been ranting for years that this team needs to bring in a #3 RB with UPSIDE and not carry the position for a career ST guy like Rock. He simply does not add enough to the team otherwise. You need those roster spots to develop guys, ideally, who can one day take over for Betts or even Portis. Rock will NEVER be that guy.

Posted by: McMetal | August 31, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

We have to keep Alridge. The Redskins are the only team in the league without a RB capable of scoring from anywhere on the field (please hold your Travis Henry jokes). And it's been that way for a long time. Can we PLEASE have SPEED??? I just want to see a scary kick-returner (Devin Thomas maybe?), a scary punt-returner (Anthony Alridge maybe?), and a change of pace back capable of running away from DBacks (Alridge).

Portis will get the majority of the carries for the first 3 Quarters w/ Betts as the 3rd down back (and stealing a series here and there). Then in the 4th Quarter, Alridge will come in to burn the tired defenses with his 4.2 speed (similar to how Ahmad Bradshaw or Felix Jones were used last year). Portis will get ALL goal-line carries. No matter when. (You had your chance, Sellers...)

Posted by: Sheriff_Gonna_Getcha | August 31, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse

"KR and PR I think are measured mostly by consistency and reliability."

Not really, and especially not in punt returns. Great punt returners make their mark in how they force the opposing team to execute their punt. A lot of great return men force punts out of bounds, or force extremely high and short punts, which will (A) lower an overall average of the return man, but (B) will increase the field position.

Similar with kick returners. Great KRs have forced opponents to squib kick, angle the ball away from that returner, or sacrifice significant field position in place of the threat of a big return.

If you don't have that threat, you're just another return unit. And that's all Rock is. Nothing special, something reliable, ultimately replaceable.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse

no one has seperated themselves as a better KR or PR than Rock and Antwaan. Except Moss whom you want to use in key situations a la Reggie Bush.

Portis is 28, Betts is 30, and Rock is 29

Portis has tons of production, Betts doesn't, Rock doesn't

I love all these guys but if we need to get younger, it should start with the players who contribute the least.

I seem to remember Betts being a good KR when asked to do so, and noticed him on ST last week. Rock was hurt. But it's hard to tell if Mason is as good as either of these guys with only seeing limited action. We have to trust the coaches to pick the best players

Posted by: pabrian2003 | August 31, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse

And Rock tattled on Danny about tampering with AH, so he must be gone, right?

SEMI-COLON! RIGHT PARENTHESIS! WINKY EMOTICON!

Posted by: stevek20147 | August 31, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Did anyone else notice that Reinhart was pulled after getting beaten badly on a play which resulted in a sack of Colt? There was plenty of time remaining on the clock and I haven't heard anything about an injury.

I wouldn't be surprised if he gets cut...

Posted by: cb50 | August 31, 2009 1:36 PM | Report abuse

"Tackle Mike Williams"

Ok, I'll play it this way....

He's a lock unless someone lets go another OT that's better then he is.

Don't think the Skins aren't watching the other teams players now.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | August 31, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

zce, yea, I would be interested in seeing how many times Rock got the ball past the 40 on returns last year. IMO, that's a legitimate marker that would significantly help an offense. I don't have that stat, and maybe that would help shed light on how valuable Rock actually was (maybe I'm underestimating him).

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Rinehart is gonna get cut, or Tryon for that matter. Cutting them now is admitting that Vinny whiffed on a 3rd and 4th round pick, both of which at least in theory could be important contributors, especially Rhino...

Posted by: mattylight | August 31, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

"Rock does a great job of holding onto the ball..."

How soon we forget.

Remember that Carolina game a few years back?

The first and perhaps most costly Washington error came when running back Rock Cartwright fumbled away the ball at the goal line shortly after the Redskins recovered Davis' fumble at the Carolina 25.

Rock can also be brought down by a strong breeze. The next tackle he breaks will be his first.

Posted by: McMetal | August 31, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

IMO mason is a good feel good but he is betts and betts is he one or the other. aldridge must stay. and finally a question why not spell cp on first downs. I have never seen a back pass block with such efficient brutality I like to watch our pass game just for this alone. Plus he is a "player" meaning play maker. third down converstions are critical. unless I am mistaken he catches well. back to goal line I would live to see Sellers line up deep but I think he gets his shot at the holy land out of the I (eye) on the "gut" play, center reach blocks, CP heads the flat to pull the LBs out and its hail hail hail stike the band

Posted by: Rvf0509 | August 31, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Williams, Rinehart, and Bridges are on the team. No point in arguing about it.

The guys competing for spots are the ones whose names you don't know and seldom hear: Will Montgomery, Rueben Riley, and D'Anthony Batiste.

Posted by: Alan4 | August 31, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Assuming I can count correctly:

Practice Squad: Agnone, Williams (FB),Williams (C), Holmes, Daniel, Riley, Burley, Glenn

Defensive Back-ups on the 53: Henson, Westbrook, Barnes, Tryon, Jarmon, Wynn

Offensive Back-ups on the 53: Dorsey, Hackett, Mitchell, Thomas, Kelley, Cartwright

Offense Cuts: Yoder, Aldridge, Mason, Shelton, M. Williams, Eloi, Batiste

Defense Cuts: Buzbee, Dixon, Jackson, Skolnitsky, Young, Dutch,

K: ?

Posted by: iseyij | August 31, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

...Remember that Carolina game a few years back?....

That's the point -- a few years back. I don't know for sure, but I would venture to guess that almost every team will suffer a fumble on special teams every now and then -- my point is, for the most part, Rock doesn't turn the ball over...

As has already been said, unless there is a proven guy ready to step in and do better than Rock, the coaching staff is gonna stick with the safe bet to get the job done. No, Rock won't be flashy. But for the most part, he won't cough up the football and leave the D with a short field...

Posted by: mattylight | August 31, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

psps -- my guess is that Rock would do well if you measured KR by past the 35 or 40. And your point (along with others) that the #3 RB can offer more to the team in other ways makes sense as well.

Especially if your #3 RB isn't really the #3 RB. Turns out, that was the case last year when mgmt didn't trust Rock as the #2 RB when Betts got dinged. Of course, our mgmt is known for bringing in a big name washed up guys.

While I'm not on the bandwagon for seeing Rock go, if mgmt thinks he brings nothing as the #3 RB -- and it was that way last year -- I do think he'll be gone.

Posted by: zcezcest1 | August 31, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Makes some sense... but maybe I'm a litlle hung up on the phrase, "Williams could move into the starting lineup early in the season."

Why would they predict an injury early in the season?

Doesn't it sound more like, "once BMW is healthy enough, we're going to make a change?" Isn't this exactly what happened to Jon Jansen last year at that position?


Posted by: Alan4 | August 31, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, that phrase doesn't seem like it makes a whole lot of sense right now. Maybe they said that before BMW got hurt again. I think BMW is the backup RT. I don't see him taking Stephon's job. BMW is the better run blocker but he is awful right now in protection and I don't see him getting better early in the season. Having him on the roster as a backup makes more sense since he still needs a little bit of development before he's ready to start. I think by midseason he will be starting caliber. It'll be hard for a player cut from another team or even another player on this team to match BMW's upside. I think cutting Devin Clark pretty much put BMW on the 53 man roster. I see at least 9 offensive linemen making the roster.

These guys are locks:

Chris Samuels
Derrick Dockery
Casey Rabach
Randy Thomas
Stephon Heyer
Will Montgomery(backup C)
Jeremy Bridges(backup G not tackle)

Pick two:
BMW
Edwin Williams
Chad Rhinehart
Scott Burley
D'anthony Batiste
Rueben Riley
Player cut by another team

I think BMW and Chad Rhinehart make the roster and Edwin hits the practice squad unless an awesome tackle gets cut from another team. We need another Tackle and BNW is probably the best out there.

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | August 31, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

"Rock was a top 10 KR guy last year -- you don't replace that unless you're sure you've got a significant upgrade.

Posted by: zcezcest1"

Rock was actually a tied for 10th in return average with 3 other players. Eight players that were either tied or ahead of him had TD returns. Five of those ahead of him were/are starters for their teams (Daniel Manning, Ellis Hobbs, Leodis Mckelvin, Eddie Royal, and Pierre Thomas), and 5 were big time contributors to offense/defense (Chris Carr, Leon Washington, Darren Sproles, Jerious Norwood, and Allen Rossum).

Only two players among that entire group played virtually no role on offense or defense; Rock Cartwright and Clifton Smith (TB). Clifton Smith was an undrafted FA, also returned punts, had 2 return TDs in 9 games overall, and was a pro-bowler.

Rock may be listed in the top 10 for kick return men, but he contributes the least amount to his team out of the entire group -- by far.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Rock contributes on all areas of special teams. Just because he isn't always the one touching the ball doesn't mean he isn't out there. Also, he is a true Redskin. On a team that is constantly redefining itself, Rock is a key guy to have in a locker room that is always changing with new stars.

Posted by: mikeyvanilli | August 31, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

To tell you the truth, it would actually be a lot easier to keep Rock on the roster if Betts was a legitimate #2 in a 1-2 punch. As it is, Betts is much better as a spot starter than he is as a rotational back. For that reason, I think you need a "#3" RB that contribute on offense game in, game out, with limited carries.

Posted by: psps23 | August 31, 2009 1:59 PM | Report abuse

"he is a true Redskin"

Which amounts to nothing. Time to change, put DT returning kicks. Rock attracted ZERO interest on the Free Agent Market, and is now 2 years older.

Time to move on...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 31, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Beepers

Posted by: chasgiffen | August 31, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

beeps

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 31, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

beep beep

Posted by: Sheriff_Gonna_Getcha | August 31, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

I really think we need speed in the backfield and on returns. Rock has been consistent, but I think that we could find some other player on the team as consistent. The more I think about it, the more I think Rock should go. We've got enough athletic guys to put good coverage teams out there without him. We absolutely have to have a speed back for this offense to run on all cylinders. This is a much greater need than rock.

Posted by: brian58 | August 31, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else unsure about what to expect from Clinton Portis this season? It makes me uncomfortable to continually read about his lack of practice time. At this stage of his career, it seems the primary focus of his training camp is to ultimately remain "fresh" versus working to improve his skills and mesh with this maturing offense.

I for one wouldn't be surprised to see his poor second half numbers from last season continue into this season. Unfortunately, as history often supports, many backs with as many touches as CP has, can hit "the wall" very suddenly.

If this were to happen, look for the Skins to be in the market for a young stud with game-changing upside next offseason.

Posted by: ddgibson | August 31, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

TE - JReid is all in with Cerrato. What source do you think is feeding him the info on MW345? Using words like 'Resources invested' is clearly from MAnagement. And we all know that Cerrato and JReid have a great working relationship established by the peace offering of JLaC being moved to the NFLN......

Posted by: 4thFloo

--------------

Thank the good Lord that we don't have to read the rubbish posts by JLaC. My blood pressure goes off the roof even thinking about that moron. Please do not mention him again.

Thank you J Reid for your integrity.

Posted by: peaceful2008 | August 31, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Things are starting to get brutal over the Rock over Mason, Mason over Betts, Mason over Rock, and the flat out Betts should be gone argument. I think Marcus will do well if he made the team and time will allow him to grow into the position as a RB and a ST'er. Will he cover punts and kicks as good as Rock in the first month? maybe or maybe not but game experience and reps will allow him to reach his ceiling of production. Rock had to replace someone several years ago and maybe that guy had the same arguments about keeping his job but time is not kind to everyone who play the game. Your Body can't respond to plays and performance at age 30 compared to 24. Experience will fight off competition for a good stretch but soon you can't cut as fast as before, you can't get up field as fast, your body is taking longer periods to recover from last weeks bumps. Age will be become your competition along with the guy you are competing against. Rock and Betts are in that stage of their careers and playing running back for that long made them rich and lucky at the same time. Can they still play? YES. Can they still contribute at quality level? Yes, in certain phases of the game. If the Redskins were a PLAYER AWAY FROM MAKING A SERIOUS RUN then RB would not be a position of concern but they are not making a run this year. You go young this year and draft a young 22 year old in the draft that is a stud next year and you develop that player behind Portis and Marcus until he is ready to take over. Portis is hitting the 10k mark which is a huge accomplishment for any RB in this league and over the next 4 years he will slow down and go the route of Edgrin James and Warrick Dunn. In Four years Marcus will be that experience back that will be fighting to keep his job because a young buck will come in and do everything right. It's the circle of life in the NFL on every team.

So let up on the arguments and pay tribute to Rock and Betts for putting up the fight for so many years and playing with their hearts. I respect what they contributed over the years and I hope they still can provide some form of football in the near furture with the team but it's time to give Mason his chance to help contribute to the New Skins.....

Posted by: thebanker21 | August 31, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

yes, new blood at RB!

Posted by: bryaningrocery | August 31, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Mason, or Aldridge, or both need to make the team, we need what they can bring. Cartwight is not going to take it to the house, Betts is not going to take it to the house, nor does he have a nose for the endzone or the ability to pick up crucial yards in short yardage situations. Out with the old, in with the new.

Posted by: 72Redskins | August 31, 2009 6:17 PM | Report abuse

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