Washington Redskins' Offseason State of the Union

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Washington Redskins' Offseason State of the Union
Evan Vucci/Associated Press

There is an air of optimism around the Washington Redskins following the end of the ill-fated Mike Shanahan era. The subsequent hiring of Jay Gruden, followed by a strong offseason of productive moves, makes that optimism justified.

Gruden, along with empowered general manager Bruce Allen, has been bold and decisive in increasing the marquee talent on both sides of the ball. Credible attempts have also been made to bolster depth, which was a major issue in 2013.

However, 2014's team is not without its potential issues and obvious deficiencies. The secondary still looks patchwork, although at least this season's group is held together with more recognizable stitching.

A complete overhaul of the special teams was necessary, but the results won't be known until the new unit sees real action. The biggest worry is how an offensive line that could largely resemble last season's feeble bunch stands up.

But not surprisingly, the biggest issue of all concerns the development of quarterback Robert Griffin III. Allen and Gruden have equipped the young signal-caller with all the weapons he needs to thrive.

But the coach has also made it clear that Griffin won't be able to lean on the read-option schemes that made him deadly as a rookie. That means a full commitment to mastering a pro-style offense. How Griffin handles that transition is sure to determine the fate of this season.

Here's a closer look at Washington's offseason, starting with the positive moves and what they mean for 2014.

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