-Murphy saw some extended work in the 3rd preseason game with Brian Orakpo leaving the game early with a minor injury. Murphy took advantage of Orakpo’s absence and had a nice game rushing the passer, getting 1 sack and another really nice pressure. Up until this point Murphy’s contributions in the pass rushing department were few and far between, despite mainly facing 2nd and 3rd stringers. It was good to see Murphy have some success and you can see the potential of the Redskins 3 pass rusher package in generating pressure this season. Murphy has shown up very nicely throughout the preseason in stopping the run, but he will need to be more consistent attacking the quarterback this season.
-Morgan Moses has gotten a lot of work this preseason and already you can see it paying off. Though he’s not perfect and gives up a couple bad snaps each game so far, he’s becoming more consistent and doing a better job finishing his blocks. Given that he’s been splitting his time between both tackle spots, his development has been promising. He still might not be ready to fully supplant RT Tyler Polumbus, but he’s shown the ability to possibly take that job at some point this season. One concern in the Ravens game was he went down with a minor MCL injury. Luckily for the Redskins the injury appears to be minor and shouldn’t have any long term implications.
-Long like Moses was a 3rd round pick, and a guy who the Redskins hope can quickly work his way into the starting line-up. Though he’s been solid at times, his play has been pretty flat in the preseason so far without a lot of improvement. In the 3rd preseason game he got some work with the first team, and while the sample size was small it was clear that he wasn’t ready to challenge Chester just yet for a starting role. Long will battle with Josh LeRibeus to see who will be the top interior OL back-up this season, and right now it’s likely that he’s a little behind LeRibeus. That could mean that Long will spend most weeks on the inactive list. Overall this fourth game should be a nice extended test for Long to see where he’s at heading into the season.
-Breeland regressed some versus the Ravens after a strong performance in the first two weeks of the preseason. Overall though he’s looked very good out there for the Redskins and has flashed the potential to be a long term answer for the Redskins secondary. Breeland has been very physical with both receivers and coming up to make tackles against the run. He has nice length that has really helped him in coverage. While there is a lot of promise in Breeland’s performance so far, it’s likely that he’ll be behind both Tracy Porter and E.J. Biggers on the depth chart to start the season.
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-Grant has easily been the Redskins most impressive rookie so far this preseason. Grant has looked very advanced in his route-running and his catching ability, to the point that you can forget at times that he’s a rookie. Grant obviously has faced off with 2nd and 3rd stringers, and in some cases due to injuries in the opposing secondary he’s faced off versus 4th-5th stringers, so expectations should be tempered somewhat. Even with more realistic expectations, Grant has been a great pick-up for the Redskins and looks like a nice value find in the 5th round. The biggest issue facing Grant is that he’s buried on a depth chart that has a lot of talented young receivers under contract. Grant’s opportunities figure to be slim this year, but he’s the type of guy who can make the most out of them.
-Seastrunk has been buried on the depth chart this year, despite being drafted with pretty high hopes. There is no question of Seastrunk’s potential and game-breaking ability, but it’s also pretty clear that he’s a very raw prospect. He just doesn’t have much utility on passing downs as he struggles as a blocker and isn’t a good receiver out of the back-field. Seastrunk is a project player at this point, but that makes him hard to keep when final cuts are made if the Redskins only want to keep 3 RB’s. Since Seastrunk is so raw he can’t really back-up either position as a 3rd down back or a featured guy. So if either Morris or Helu were to go down, he wouldn’t offer much help. The Redskins likely want to hold on to Seastrunk due to his potential, but to do so they will need to keep an additional back or hope they can stash Seastrunk on the practice squad.
-The Redskins 7th round tight end came into the preseason facing an uphill climb and that has continued throughout these first three weeks. Bosler did catch a TD pass week 1 of the preseason, and has been okay running routes. The issue with him is his lack of blocking ability. The Redskins are likely to try to keep Bosler on the practice squad and hopes he can bulk up and be a better blocker for next season.
-The kicking battle is one of the most interesting offseason questions surrounding the Redskins and right now it is still too close to call. Hocker though has shown good accuracy and has clearly been better on his kick-offs which should give him the lead heading into tonight’s preseason finale.
-The only Redskins undrafted rookie who really did much of anything this year was RB Silas Redd. Redd has muddied the Redskins running back position this preseason as he’s clearly played better and is a more complete player than Seastrunk. Redd though has an up-hill climb for a roster spot though as even if the Redskins keep 4 RB’s they could opt for Seastrunk based on potential alone. Unless Redd just has an amazing final preseason game, his best bet is to earn a spot on the practice squad. Given Redd’s running ability and his pass protection so far he definitely looks to have an NFL future.