2014 NFL Power Rankings Countdown
27. Washington Redskins (NFC East)
2013 Record: 3-13
Head coach: Jay Gruden – Gruden spent the last three seasons as the offensive coordinator for the Cincinnati Bengals. He was an offensive assistant with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers working under his brother John Gruden. He’s been a head coach in the AFL and also the UFL. Gruden is a former record setting quarterback in the AFL as well.
Best offensive player: DeSean Jackson, wide receiver – Jackson is one of the few players in the NFL who can consistently blow the top off of a defense and go deep. He can also take short passes and break long runs as well. Having a player with this skill set should help the Redskins passing game and quarterback Robert Griffin III immensely.
Best defensive player: Brian Orakpo, outside linebacker – Orakpo is the Redskins best pass rusher, and when he’s on he can be a disruptive force off the edge. He had 10 sacks last season, 7 of which came in in his last six games. Leading many to believe that Orakpo is ready to have a monster season in 2014.
Rising Star: Jordan Reed, tight end – Jordan Reed was a legitimate rookie of the year candidate until a concussion caused him to miss seven games in 2013. However, he was still second on the team in receptions with 45, and if he can stay healthy he more than likely will eclipse that total this season.
Best new addition: DeSean Jackson, wide receiver – It was not expected that DeSean Jackson would be cut by the Philadelphia Eagles. But when he was, the Redskins moved aggressively to sign him. Not only does he give the offense the deep threat it lacked, but he will also open the field up for other targets such as Pierre Garcon.
Biggest offseason loss: London Fletcher, inside linebacker – Fletcher didn’t have his best season for the Redskins in 2013, but he was the unquestioned leader of the team. And now that Fletcher has retired, without his presence in the locker room there will be a huge void of leadership that needs to filled
Biggest strength: The Redskins biggest strength is wide receiver. Pierre Garcon had already emerged as a top receiver, but then the Redskins signed free agents Andre Roberts and DeSean Jackson giving them one of the receiving units in the league. NFL Power Rankings
Biggest weakness: The Redskins biggest weakness is at safety. The Redskins have veterans Brandon Meriweather and Ryan Clark poised to be the starters. And even though Clark brings a lot of leadership to the table, and Meriweather has experience, the Redskins are still trying to find some players to solidify the position long-term. 2014 NFL Power Rankings Countdown