Nick Wass/Associated Press
Fans are excited to see what Jason Hatcher can do for the Redskins this year.
Starters: Jason Hatcher, Barry Cofield, Chris Baker
The defensive line is a little more fluid, but that's mostly due to potential injury hangovers. Jason Hatcher is the de facto starter at defensive end, but it's all dependent on his return from arthroscopic surgery.
Hatcher is working his way back to an appearance in the third preseason game, according to John Keim at ESPN. This should give him a little time to get acclimated to his new teammates and the scheme that Jim Haslett is running, but it's unreasonable to expect fireworks against the Houston Texans in Week 1.
Barry Cofield had a tough start to 2013 when he broke his hand in the preseason and had to sport an unwieldy club bandage. Needless to say, he struggled along with the rest of the defense. However, as the season went on, Cofield's performances got better.
Cofield won a Super Bowl with the New York Giants in 2007 and will be looking to get another one while in Washington. Newly 30, Cofield must know that his opportunities are dwindling. However, he's been encouraged by the Redskins' new-look defense.
Speaking to Elliott Smith at The Washington Post, Cofield was optimistic about Haslett's scheme:
I love the aggression and I love that we are playing to people’s strengths. We have a lot of talented guys with a lot of different skill sets on this defense, and this accentuates everyone’s strong points...I feel great. I feel as comfortable as I’ve ever felt. Everybody is going to be put in position to make plays, so I’m extremely excited.
At the other defensive end spot, Chris Baker seemingly has the edge over Jarvis Jenkins. Jenkins has reportedly woken up to the fact that he has disappointed so far and is now taking steps to make amends.
Nevertheless, Baker has been willing to work and get better, which has resulted in a strong training camp and his current position as a starter.
Stephen Bowen is the wild card, as we don't yet know how he will respond after microfracture surgery. According to John Keim at ESPN, Bowen has agreed to restructure his contract with the Redskins. With the defensive end set to count for $7 million against the cap, this will be very useful.