Yesterday I did 5 players on defense who were on the team last year, but heading into camp on the roster bubble. Today I will look at the offense, using the same criteria. Not all of these guys will get cut, but they are all firmly on the bubble.
-After being called up to the active roster late in the 2011 season, Royster made two starts to close out the year. He had over 100 yards rushing in both starts and looked to be another promising late round running back found by Mike Shanahan. Last year Royster was banged up, and was passed on the depth chart by Alfred Morris. Royster is back this season, but he faces quite a bit of competition as Roy Helu Jr. returns from injury and the team drafted running backs Chris Thompson and Jawan Jamison in the draft. Backs like Helu and Thompson offer more speed and more of a receiving threat than Royster can offer, and Jamison played in a zone scheme in college. If the Redskins only keep 3 running backs, Royster will have a really tough time making the team. Even if they keep four he could be on the outside looking in.
-Briscoe was a waiver wire pick-up from the Buccaneers after he was cut at the start of camp. Briscoe didn’t do much during the year, but in Tampa he showed himself to be a nice red zone threat and desperately added size to the Redskins offense. Though the Redskins really didn’t bring in anything to challenge him for the 6th receiver spot, the team simply may only decide to keep 5 receivers this year. With receiving tight ends like Jordan Reed and Fred Davis, the Redskins are less likely to utilize four or five wide receiver sets. The Skins also must find a way to keep four tight ends, and the easiest way to do that would be eliminate a receiver position. If Briscoe can’t work his way up into the top 5 receivers (which will be very tough), he will likely be looking for another team come September.
-The next three guys (Hurt, Gettis, and Compton) are all going to basically be fighting for the same 2 maybe 3 roster spots (and they aren’t alone in that competition). The Redskins kept 10 offensive linemen last year, but are probably more likely to max out at nine this year. With Trent Williams, Kory Lichtensteiger, Will Montgomery, and Chris Chester locked into starting spots, there are only 5 spots left. The right tackle winner will get another spot, and that is likely going to be decided between Tyler Polumbus and Tony Pashos. The loser between those two should get the top back-up tackle spot, leaving just three offensive line positions. Josh LeRibeus is a safe bet for one of the back-up spots, leaving just two spots up for grabs. Hurt has some positional versatility, but the Redskins may feel they have that covered with Tyler Polumbus. Hurt needs to have a strong camp, to beat out the rest of the competition for one of those two final spots.
-Gettis was the team’s 5th round pick in 2012 out of Iowa. Despite being undersized when drafted, Gettis quickly showcased himself well in camp and the preseason. In fact by most accounts he was looking better at RG than 3rd rounder Josh LeRibeus at LG. Despite looking better in camp, Gettis wasn’t given the flexibility to see if he could play LG last year. So when later in the year Kory Lichtensteiger got banged up, LeRibeus was given the chance to get some playing time. Most weeks Gettis was inactive and could face a roster crunch this year given that the tackle position is more crowded. If Tyler Polumbus loses the RT job, his versatility to play guard could be a bad sign for Gettis. I still think he ends up making the roster, but it could be a tough camp battle.
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-Compton faces an uphill climb to make this roster after getting a late season call-up from the practice squad last year. Compton was buried on the depth chart last camp, and was quickly eliminated from the wide open right tackle battle after Jammal Brown went down with an injury. Most reports out of Compton last camp saw him as a guy who was very unready to contribute, and would need some developmental time. Now when he was called up to the active roster the coaches praised him for his work and development on the practice squad, but he was only active one game (week 16 versus Eagles), when Tyler Polumbus was injured and Jordan Black was suspended. Compton though never got into the game (even on special teams). With the team bringing back Tyler Polumbus on a two year deal, and veterans Tony Pashos and Jeremy Trueblood coming in, it could be tough to make the roster.