Washington Redskins 2019 Season Preview

Russell S. Baxter

Washington Redskins 2019 Season Preview

By Spencer Schultz

Special to Pro Football Guru

The Washington Redskins face a number of question marks heading into the 2019 season. With left tackle Trent Williams possibly gone, a rookie quarterback looking to out-duel a new veteran and several other concerns, the outstanding work that the Redskins front office has put forth has been overlooked. The Redskins were decimated by injuries on both sides of the ball in 2018. The club was in the driver’s seat midway through 2018 until injuries to Alex Smith, six interior offensive lineman and several key defensive pieces crippled their season. Regaining stability along the offensive line coupled with perhaps the strongest draft of any NFL team is a welcome sight.

Offense: Case Keenum was named the team's starting quarterback and this Redskins' offense has a bevy of new play-makers. The backfield is manned by veteran Adrian Peterson and Derrius Guice, who missed all of 2018 but has an outstanding combination of contact balance and agility. The pass-catching group is extremely young, but look out for rookie burner Terry McLaurin. He will team with Paul Richardson and Kelvin Harmon to form a nice trio. Trey Quinn has been the talk of Redskins training camp, and has been written in ink by head coach Jay Gruden as the starting slot receiver. This unit is inexperienced and a work in progress, but should surprise opponents with their power run game and improved receiving corps.

Defense: Defensively, the Redskins have what should be considered the top defensive front in the NFL. Ryan Kerrigan is certainly the most underappreciated edge rusher in the league. Kerrigan is second in sacks in the league to only Denver’s Von Miller since being drafted. Combined with Jonathan Allen, Daron Payne and Montez Sweat, there are four first-round selections across the defensive front. That list doesn’t even include Ryan Anderson or Matt Ioannidis, both of who are ascending stars. Sweat is a dark horse NFL Defensive Rookie of the year candidate. The addition of Landon Collins brings an enforcer to an otherwise lackluster back-end. Rookie Jimmy Moreland is a player to watch. He’s been a menace in the defensive backfield all summer long.

Special Teams: This unit is quietly spectacular. Dustin Hopkins has been one of the most reliable kickers in the NFL over his first two seasons. Tress Way can turn field position around with an iron boot, and the Redskins drafted the best gunner in college football in McLaurin. He continuously hammered opposing returners and made them pay for electing to test Ohio State’s kick coverage.

Prediction: Gruden’s posterior has figurative second-degree burns from how hot his seat is currently. The greatest key to success for the Redskins is staying healthy, as no team can survive the losses they suffered in 2018. If they’re able to steer their ship away from the tumultuous waters of the injury bug that sunk them last year, they will surprise the NFL. They face a treacherous schedule to start the season, but if they can steal two wins in their first three home games, they’ll be in great shape.

Win-Loss Record: 9-7 (3rd Place, NFC East)

Spencer Schultz (@Ravens4Dummies) is a writer and podcast host for SB Nation’s Baltimore Beatdown. He also covers college football for FanSided. His focus is on all professional and collegiate sports in the DMV. He also does film breakdown every Tuesday for “Locked on Ravens,” a part of the “Locked On” Podcast Network.

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