This is the first part of a series that lists who will make our 53-man roster next year. This is one blogger’s opinion born from having watched and charted almost every snap this season.
Washington kept seven defensive tackles on the roster so that’s the amount I’m assuming we keep for next year. I’m also assuming injuries revert back to normal because we are good fans and good fans deserve normal things.
Holy Lock To Come Back Next Year:
McGee: The only player signed through 2021 along with Morgan Moses and Jordan Reed. Can get under tackles and take on double team blocks from Tackles and Tight Ends.
McClain: His performance dictates he should be let go but because of his contract he will be back in 2018. Not the case for 2019 when the opt-out kicks in; if he performs comparable to this year he will likely be gone.
Will Most Likely Return Next Year:
Hood: Quick up front. He had a strong showing in November against the Saints, Vikings and Giants. He showed an uncanny ability to close down gaps on zone runs:
The main chinks in his armor were his early season struggles and stopping the run against Dallas. His salary will be $1.4 million against the cap next year which is a bargain for his role as a rotation piece that could play 15-20 snaps per game and start when injuries require him to do so.
If Hood comes back and we pick up an interior lineman in the offseason, at least one of the following guys should be gone.
Lanier: He is a liability against the run which should disqualify him but he is the only one that can generate interior pressure other than Allen and Ion.
AJ Francis: Stout against the run which makes him my choice to return next season. Non-existent versus pass.
Best of Luck In Your Future Endeavors:
Arthur Jones: An emergency signing to fill in for the Seattle game where he charted a -3 prior to winding up on IR. He was our first choice in the case of an emergency but his body appears to be near Mr. Glass on the injury spectrum.
Caraun Reid: A fifth round draft pick that was waived twice by the Lions and Chargers and has done nothing since coming here. He was passed over by emergency fill-ins and his contract expires at the end of this season.
Phil Taylor: By the start of next season he will have not played a meaningful snap in almost four years. He is signed to a one year deal and is healing from a quadricep injury while pushing close to 350 pounds. Unless we refuse to invest in anyone else I don’t see a spot for him on our roster.
Ondre Pipkins: The former Michigan and Texas Tech product found a home on our practice squad this season. It’s not a good look that he’s been passed over by multiple emergency fill-ins. His best case scenario for 2018 is looking like the PS again with a shot to start if injuries take a similar toll on our roster.