Green = Position is set, unlikely to be addressed in the draft. Yellow = Player’s spot on depth chart in question, could be addressed in the draft. Red = Highly likely to be addressed in the draft if player is high on the depth chart, unlikely to make the team if low on the depth chart. Also, if the player is 30 years of age or older as of this publish date, his age is noted in parenthesis.
NOTE: There was some confusion as to the color code system on previous depth chart posts. If a player is highlighted in green, it does not necessarily mean that I think that player is a stud (see Hall, DeAngelo). It just means that his spot on the depth chart is very likely safe. Good? Good. OK, let’s get to it:
- Robert Griffin III is going to start from Day 1, right? I think so, but it’s probably not 100%.
- I kinda like the 1-2 combo of Roy Helu and Evan Royster. With Tim Hightower likely not coming back, expect the Skins to bring in a vet to fill out the RB rotation.
- I’m sure Shanny would love to see Leonard Hankerson and/or Josh Morgan legitimately beat out Santana Moss for the starting WR job in 2012, but I’m going to give the nod, for now, to Tana. If it’s even remotely close, Santana will probably hit the pine.
- What is it with the NFC East and compiling a ton of TE’s? The Giants have 7 currently on their roster. The Skins have 6. Included on that list is Niles Paul, who is apparently moving there from WR. It kinda makes sense, I suppose, but I’m not buying it. Paul is a good blocker, and has decent bulk at 224 lbs, but he’s only 6’1. There’s a logjam at WR, so the Skins’ thinking has to be that Paul isn’t going to make the roster as a WR, so they may as well see what he can do at TE.
- I can’t believe the Skins haven’t done a thing yet at RT. They simply can’t go into another season with Jammal Brown as the starter. Not with so much invested in RG3. No way. But if the season began today, that’s what we’d be looking at.
- Kory Lichtensteiger is still recovering from a torn ACL (among other knee problems), but he should be ready by camp. While the starting OL in general is below average, in my opinion, and the depth is weak, they’ll have to make due for at least 2012 with the current group.
Defense after the jump…
- DE looks like a strength for the Skins, particularly if Jarvis Jenkins pans out. Good starters, decent depth. I still think Barry Cofield is playing out of position at NT, but he’s serviceable enough there. If the Skins ever got a legitimate, good NT, and could move Cofield over to DE where he’s a more natural fit, that would be a scary rotation up front.
- The LB’s are also a major strength for this defense. Obviously, Brian Orakpo can play, as can Ryan Kerrigan, and London Fletcher is sort of the glue that keeps it all together. But the one spot that’s a bit of an unknown this season will be Perry Riley at the other ILB spot. I thought he played a lot better than Rocky McIntosh last season, and he’ll only be an upgrade there.
- One area of concern in the front 7, however, is the complete lack of depth at ILB. The Skins signed Bryan Kehl today. He was a Giant, and then a Ram, and then a Giant, and then a Ram, and he’s only been in the league for 5 years. That’s not good. Lorenzo Alexander, meanwhile, is a jack of all trades and a special teams standout, but I wouldn’t want him to have to start any games for me at ILB. The Skins are in trouble if they lose Fletcher or Riley for any period of time, although in fairness, London Fletcher hasn’t missed a game… ever. Otherwise, the front 7 is in really good shape.
- While the front 7 looks great, the back end could be a train wreck. I have no idea what the Skins are thinking keeping DeAngelo Hall at the money he’s making, and this group of safeties could be scary bad. Brandon Meriweather has had 2 teams give up on him since August, Reed Doughty can’t cover anyone that runs a sub 4.8, Cedric Griffin has a list of injuries a mile long and ignored the play calls in Minnesota last year, and Tanard Jackson was atrocious last season. In fact, here’s how bad Tanard Jackson was in 2011 – He only played 49.8% of Tampa’s defensive snaps last season, and according to Pro Football Focus, he led the NFL in missed tackles, with 24. I really have no idea who’s going to win out in this battle of crap du jour, so this is 100% guess work, but I’m going to go with Meriweather and the kid, DeJon Gomes.
- As for the other corners not mentioned in the venomous bullet point above, I do like Josh Wilson, and think the signing of Leigh Torrence will be an upgrade over Kevin Barnes an Byron Westbrook.
- Oops, forgot Madieu Williams. And so did the Redskins, evidently. Anyway, I wrote about Williams here.
- Graham Gano was dead last in the NFL with a FG% of 68.6% in 2010. In 2011, he was 29th at 75.6%. Wooooo! Progress! But seriously, if anyone can give me a reason why he’s still in the league, I’m all ears.