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Replacing The Departed Players: Offense

With training camp on the horizon in just a few weeks, the Redskins Offseason is coming to a close and it’s a good time to look back on who the Redskins have lost since last season. Of course, with every loss comes a new opportunity for someone to replace them, so we will examine who is in line to do just that. Let’s start with the offense here today, and be sure to tune in for the defense tomorrow.

Quarterback: Robert Griffin

This clearly isn’t what the Redskins had in mind when they moved up to select Robert Griffin with the second overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, but it was time to move on. He was inactive for every game last year while the Redskins waited for his contract to run out, while Colt McCoy served as the primary backup to Kirk Cousins. McCoy will once again backup Cousins, and the Redskins will have to decide whether they want to carry a third quarterback on the roster. In the sixth round of this year’s draft, Washington selected Indiana University quarterback Nate Sudfeld, who threw for 3,573 yards and 27 touchdowns during his senior year. At 6’6”, 243 lbs, he has great size to be an NFL quarterback, but has yet to show anything impressive on the field during the offseason. In his latest 53-man roster prediction, Redskins Capital Connection’s Chad Ryan has Sudfeld landing on the practice squad this year.

Running Back: Alfred Morris

After leading the team in rushing for the past four years, the Redskins chose to move on from Alfred Morris this offseason, which resulted in him signing with the Cowboys. Morris’ yards per carry declined during each year with the Redskins, and the coaches were keen to give Matt Jones the chance to claim the starting job last year. Unfortunately, Jones turned in 3.4 yards per carry to go along with four lost fumbles. He did show flashes of potential, including a 19 carry – 123 yard – two touchdown performance against the Rams in Week 2 and a 78 yard touchdown on a screen pass against the Saints in Week 9.

Chris Thompson is also still with the team, but has never had more than seven carries in a game for the Redskins, and is best suited as a third down back. The newcomer to the mix is seventh round draft pick Keith Marshall, who has the potential to push Jones for the starting job. Marshall showed immense ability during his freshman year at Georgia, rushing for 759 yards and eight touchdowns, while averaging 6.5 yards per carry. Of course, he fell to the seventh round for a reason, and that reason is injuries. We have seen how good he is, but he needs to prove that he can stay healthy if he wants to play a significant role in this offense.

Fullback: Darrel Young

Darrel Young has been the team’s primary fullback since 2011, following the departure of Mike Sellers, however, his role has dwindled ever since Jay Gruden took over as the head coach. Gruden prefers not to use a fullback in his offense, which resulted in Young only 121 snaps last season. Moving forward, the Redskins won’t carry a fullback on the roster. They will lineup primarily with only one running back, and will look to tight ends like Niles Paul or Vernon Davis when they do need someone to serve as a fullback.

Wide Receiver: Andre Roberts

Andre Roberts was brought in during the 2014 offseason to be the number two receiver opposite Pierre Garcon. That changed as soon as DeSean Jackson was signed later that offseason, and Roberts was relegated to being the slot receiver. He caught only 50 percent of his targets in 2014, before falling to fifth on the depth chart behind Jamison Crowder and Ryan Grant last season. That resulted in him catching 11 of his 21 targets last season for a total of 135 yards, before moving onto the Detroit Lions this offseason. Crowder will remain the primary slot receiver this year, while Grant and first round draft pick Josh Doctson will take over reserve duties on the outside. Doctson went over 1,000 receiving yards in each of his final two college seasons, and caught a total of 25 touchdown passes in that span. He is seen as the heir apparent to either Garcon or Jackson, and is immediately a significant upgrade over Roberts.

Offensive Line: Tom Compton

Tom Compton served as the Redskins’ swing tackle for the past three seasons, filling in on either the left or ride side whenever one of the starters was out. In 2015, he played 236 snaps and even filled in as a tight end. He is now reunited with ex-Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan in Atlanta, leaving Ty Nsekhe as the primary candidate to replace him. Nsekhe played 197 snaps last year and solid 73.4 rating for both run blocking and pass blocking from Pro Football Focus.

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