The Washington Redskins started off last year looking like their defense might carry them to an NFC East title after Rex Grossman predicted they were the best team in the division, but that turned sour quickly and the Redskins finished as one of the worse teams in the league.
Here are some of their top needs this offseason:
The Redskins rolled with Rex Grossman and John Beck last year, and that’s not going to happen again. Either they will draft their quarterback of the future or they’ll find him in free agency. A lot of people think the free spending Redskins are one of the favorites to land Peyton Manning, while some think Matt Flynn is a perfect fit. I think Robert Griffin III could be a great fit for Washington, but I’m not sure they’ll be willing to make the move to get him, though Mike Shanahan is very good at getting what he wants on draft day.
The Redskins really struggled in pass protection, and the running game under Mike Shanahan was not as effective as it needs to be. That all starts up front, where Shanahan has done a good job of finding gems later in the draft. It would be interesting to see if former Shanahan draft pick Chris Myers (Houston) would follow him to Washington as a free agent.
DeAngelo Hall has been solid at times, but the Redskins can’t always play against Jay Cutler. Josh Wilson is a solid number two, and Kevin Barnes is a solid number three, but the Redskins could definitely stand to add a top notch cornerback. Perhaps they will look at a guy like Brandon Carr or Cortland Finnegan in free agency, or they could also have a very good chance at drafting Morris Claiborne in the first round as well.
4. Wide Receiver
Jabar Gaffney led the team in receiving and Santana Moss can stretch the field and make plays from the slot, but this team needs a legitimate number one target. The importance they place on this position will be contingent upon which quarterback is brought in. The team drafted three guys last year that have potential, namely Leonard Hankerson and Niles Paul who could potentially emerge in 2012. I don’t know how pressing of a need this is, but it all depends on how they evaluate the current state of the youngsters.
The Redskins may have to replace LaRon Landry, and that’s not an exciting prospect. Landry is a star player when healthy, one who has been compared to Troy Polamalu. He might be seeking too much money, and while the Redskins are typically willing to spend, his injury history could cause them to pause. Reed Doughty put up good numbers in his absence, but is he a full time starter type of guy?