Redskins Visit Buccaneers In Final Preseason Game


Aug 24, 2013; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins quarterback Pat White (5) runs for a 14 yard touchdown in the second quarter against the Buffalo Bills at FedEx Field. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

The Redskins are in Tampa Bay tonight to take on the Buccaneers, who the team seems to face each preseason (and regular season), for the final preseason game of the season. While most positions on the team are already taken, there are still a few that could be up for grabs.

The number three quarterback spot could be one of those, but with Rex Grossman out, that ideally would seem to fit that Shanahan feels good enough with him in. During 2011 to figure out the #3 QB role, Mike Shanahan had Kellen Clemens and Matt Gutierrez fighting it out, but neither ended up making the team as the Redskins went with Grossman and John Beck.

That’s not to say that will be the same case for Pat White, who seems to have earned a fan favorite role already for whatever reason, but he’s going to need to bring something to the table if he plans on stealing the job from Grossman.

While he can run the read-option quite well, there’s still a lot of work to do, especially in the passing game which has been his main issue. While the read-option depends on the dual threat of both the running back and quarterback, the quarterback also needs to pass in order to keep defenses on their toes, otherwise you see a 2011 season where defenses stacked the box constantly.

Jul 25, 2013; Richmond, VA, USA; Washington Redskins quarterback Rex Grossman (8) throws the ball as Redskins quarterback Pat White (5) watches during opening day of 2013 NFL training camp at the Bon Secours Washington Redskins Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

If Pat White can show he’s been able to fix all of that in less than a week, he might have a shot at making the team, but the odds are currently against him, and playing against others who have no shot at making a team isn’t going to give him any extra points.

While most of the starters won’t play tonight, we could still see some action from others who might need more playing time.

Leonard Hankerson could be one of them as he continues to be inconsistent on the field. Though he has gotten better going over the middle, he still continues to drop passes that should be routine for him. If he plans on being in the starting lineup this season, he’s going to need to start catching consistently.

Aug 24, 2013; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins tight end Jordan Reed (86) gets tackled by Buffalo Bills cornerback Ron Brooks (33) at FedEx Field. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Jordan Reed could also see some more playing time as he wasn’t active until the second preseason game, but only caught one pass for eight yards. His second game (third preseason game against Buffalo) he was much better, with three receptions for 31 yards. Though he doesn’t appear to need any time playing as his route running and catch was superb, Shanahan could throw him out for a couple of series.

Three receivers to watch tonight are Dezmon Briscoe, Skye Dawson and Nick Williams. Both Briscoe and Williams appear to be guys who could be in the mix for the future, but might not make the team this season. Briscoe has been getting better as of late, and Nick Williams has been compared as the next Wes Welker. If that’s the case, Shanahan knows it and will make a spot for them.

While Skye Dawson might not be able to make the team as a WR, or at least not at this time, there’s a good chance he could see it as punt returner, as the Redskins currently are without return man Richard Crawford, who was lost for the season after tearing his ACL, MCL and LCL.

Chris Thompson could be a candidate for the return job as well, but has issues holding on to the ball which doesn’t appear to be an issue for Dawson. Of course there’s always DeAngelo Hall and other veterans such as Santana Moss and Aldrick Robinson, but it might not be wise throwing your every down starters in at punt returner.

Evan Royster should see playing time after he missed last week’s game against Buffalo with an injury. Royster could be on the bubble of being cut this season, so he will need to make the best of his opportunity tonight.

Chris Thompson and Jawan Jamison should both see much more time as the starters will be kept out of the mix. For a player like Jamison who has been given limited reps, tonight might be his best shot at opening Mike Shanahan’s eyes as to why he should be here. His reputation coming out of college was he was a similar back to Ray Rice.

Aug 19, 2013; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins wide receiver Skye Dawson (16) runs with the ball as Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Kion Wilson (48) chases in the fourth quarter at FedEx Field. The Redskins won 24-13. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

If that is true, Mike Shanahan knows it; he after all is the King of running back draft picks.

David Amerson might have shown enough to be rested this game, but Bacarri Rambo will need to show much more as his preseason campaign hasn’t been nearly as bright as Amersons. The only issue of course is Rambo is the starting free safety; if an injury were to occur the backfield would be significantly limited as the team as already lost Phillip Thomas for the season.

On the other hand, Brandon Meriweather is expected to play a few series tonight, so it might be a good idea to have the two play together during that time to give each other a feel for one another and what’s expected this season.

Brandon Jenkins should be another watch tonight, as so far this preseason he has caused major issues for opposing offenses. Kevin Kolb found that out when he was taken down for a huge loss on a sack. With injuries to Kennan Robinson and Rob Jackson, Jenkins could be called upon early this season.

There’s a lot to watch for rookie wise, but otherwise the Washington Redskins roster is 95% shaped up to the way it’s supposed to be.