Look for the 2014 Redskins to be better on defense especially upfront with the signing of DT Jason Hatcher and with the drafting of linebacker Trent Murphy. I think this unit will tackle much better and get to the quarterback much better with more pressures and sacks. With Hatcher, Ryan Kerrigan, Brian Orakpo, and DE Jarvis Jenkins. The singing of safety Ryan Clark should help the secondary and him and Brandon Meriweather could be a great combo. But even with all of this, the weakness of the Redskins is sill the secondary. They got to tackle in 2014 and not blow so many pass coverages like they did last year.
On offense, unless Robert Griffin doesn’t bounce back and struggles again and the offensive line doesn’t protect him, the Redskins have all of the weapons on offense to be even better than they were in 2012. With wide receivers, Desean Jackson, Pierre Garcon, Santana Moss, Andre Roberts and then add TE Jordan Reid who could be headed to the Pro Bowl in 2014. (Even though no one watches it) Redskins RB Alfred Morris should have his third straight big year running the ball behind an improved OL that was already a very good run blocking offensive line.
Having said all of this and with all of the new offseason additions that the Redskins made including the new head coach Jay Gruden, the Redskins will go as far as Robert Griffin takes them. And if he struggles early on, he may not finish the season as their starter because Jay Gruden didn’t come to Washington to rebuild, but to win. And he has a good young backup QB in Kirk Cousins behind Griffin. And if Griffin struggles, you may see Gruden going to Cousins early and seeing how the Redskins do under Cousins. Especially since Gruden’s offense fits Cousins better being that Kirk is a drop back pass first QB. Which works very will with the Redskins running game.
I could see the Redskins winning 5-6 games because the secondary could struggle again and the offensive line not being able to protect either QB, Robert Griffin or Kirk Cousins. And perhaps Jay Gruden needs to go through a transitional period from being just the offensive coordinator, to now being the head coach of the whole team and having to supervise the defense and make sure everyone is on the same page there while he is not trying to run the defense. 5-11 or 6-10 is my worst case scenario for the Redskins in 2014 for those reasons.
Or I could see the Redskins going 9-7, 10-6, 11-5 and not just making the NFC Playoffs, but challenging the Philadelphia Eagles for the NFC East. Because I believe only the Eagles are better than the Redskins in the NFC East because they have fewer question marks. The Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants I expect to struggle again. The Giants essentially have the same team and the Cowboys lost a lot especially on defense.
Griffin is healthy and even if Cousins is better suited to QB the offense the Redskins I believe they’ll be very good offensively both running and throwing. The OL is going to be better for reasons mentioned in the video and the Redskins now have so many weapons on offense, that the defenses won’t be able to take away everybody. Meaning someone will always have an opportunity to produce. So what will take the Redskins from an 8-8 team that is very explosive on offense, but with a lot of holes on defense. To a 10-6 team that is great offensively and solid on defense, is the secondary and I believe the Redskins are solid there, not great, but good enough for the Redskins to be successful in 2014.