Redskins: Full Position Breakdown and Depth Chart Analysis at Quarterback
Not that competition at a critical position is always a bad thing, but there's a much better sense of assurance when you head into training camp with an established depth chart at quarterback. And for the Washington Redskins—in otherwise atypical fashion—their situation at quarterback doesn't posses much drama heading into 2014.
After finishing a magical 2012 season with a torn ACL, Robert Griffin III has yet to look the same as he did when he took Washington by storm as a rookie. As Griffin looks to get his career back on the fast track, new head coach Jay Gruden will focus on making Griffin a legitimate threat from the pocket.
Backing up Griffin is Kirk Cousins, who saw regular-season action late last year as the Redskins decided to rest Griffin and give their other guys a run. Despite offseason chatter about the possibility of trading Cousins, general manager Bruce Allen says he never came close to dealing the former 2012 fourth-round draft pick, according to Tarik El-Bashir of CSNWashington.com.
And rounding out the position is Colt McCoy, who the Redskins signed in early April to be the team's No. 3. McCoy comes to Washington after spending his first three years with Cleveland and last season as the backup in San Francisco.
Let's look a bit further into each quarterback heading into next season.
Despite his limitations as a passer, Colt McCoy is a decent option in case of a disaster at quarterback. If all goes well, your team will never call on your third-string option, and that's how the Redskins hope it works out for them this season.
Instead of letting a couple of sixth-rounders battle it out for the last quarterback spot, McCoy provides a sort of bonus in that he has 21 starts under his belt. He knows what it's like to throw touchdowns and, more so, what it's like to throw a pick or take a sack. Having a No. 3 quarterback who carries some starting experience—and isn't 50 years old—isn't a bad setup.
That being said, there's no promise McCoy makes the final 53. Although Griffin's knee creates slight cause for concern, head coach Jay Gruden could very well enter this season with only two quarterbacks on his roster.
Although Griffin still receives all the attention, trade rumors and excess chatter over the course of last season and around the time of the draft has made Kirk Cousins a household name in the NFL.
From a football standpoint, the Redskins are in great shape with Cousins serving as their backup. He's a young guy with a high football IQ and a hardworking demeanor. Fans remember him best for his fill-in jobs in 2012, helping the Redskins win the NFC East and ultimately make it to the playoffs for the first time in what felt like forever.
Despite the offseason chatter, general manager Bruce Allen claims he never came close to trading Cousins, and we can expect that claim to stand tall throughout this season. Maybe that discussion heats up again toward the end December, but for now, Cousins is under contract for the next two seasons, and the Redskins appear comfortable with Cousins as their No. 2.
Robert Griffin III
From an inspiring rookie season, to a dismal sophomore campaign, Griffin heads into 2014 as the clear-cut No. 1 quarterback in Washington, as he should be.
Despite his many struggles last season, much of it falls on his hurried recovery from offseason ACL repair, the bulky brace swallowing his knee every game and the pressure to live up to the season he gave fans less than 12 months prior. Griffin's mechanics were shot, his confidence wavered, relationships were strained and the Redskins finished the season 3-13.
But that's now all in the rearview. With new coach Jay Gruden running the show, his pass-happy offense and his focus on making Griffin a legitimate threat as a pocket quarterback, Griffin has reason to be excited. Just as I mentioned in a Griffin fantasy preview, Gruden's preferred play-calling, pass volume and pace in which he operates all favor Griffin in what's staged to be an awesome rebounding season.