|Banks, above, was one a few surprises to make the Redskins roster. (Photo: wordpress.com)|
First off, I would like to say that I am not surprised that Chris Cooley did not make the team. There was not enough production from him to pay him the $3 million plus that he was owed. He was not going to start and was going to get very minimal playing time. I have, and always will be, a huge fan of Chris Cooley (as I wrote here), but his time in Washington came to an end and it was one of those things that was just going to happen whether we wanted it to or not.
As for the Redskins current 53 man roster, the first name that sticks out as a surprise is Richard Crawford. Crawford was undrafted rookie out of Southern Methodist University coming into training camp and had some stiff competition at the cornerback spot. He made a huge impact in the Redskins preseason opener against the Bills where he had an interception and even had a some good return yards. Crawford was consistently good at the cornerback position and that is something the Redskins need in the defensive secondary.
The next player that was surprising this preseason that made the 53 man roster was Alfred Morris. Morris was a sixth round draft pick from Florida Atlantic University and many saw him on the outside looking in with likes of Tim Hightower, Roy Helu Jr, and Evan Royster already on roster at the running back position. Morris was the most impressive running back in the preseason and eventually took Hightower's job. Hightower was one of the players cut by the Redskins. Morris should get plenty of carries during the regular season.
Dezmon Briscoe came as a bit of a shock to me as a player that made the 53 man roster. I thought that Briscoe was at quite a disadvantage since he got to camp late. He was signed in the second week of camp after being released by the Buccaneers. Briscoe is a good player with plenty of talent, he showcased that in the preseason, and it should be interesting to see how much playing time he gets. He will mostly get utilized as a reserve.
The fourth player that made the 53 man roster that surprised me was Brandon Banks (hear me out!!). I really don't see where Banks fits into the Redskins. He doesn't have the talent to make a difference at wide receiver and special teams return units don't have that big of an impact anymore. Most kickoffs go for touchbacks and it's tough to have multiple quality punt returns. Yes, Brandon Banks has plenty of talent, but I'm still not sold that he has a REAL role on this football team.
The final player that surprised me to be on the 53 man roster was kicker Billy Cundiff. Cundiff was not even a free agent at the beginning of the preseason. He was a member of the Ravens until recently when they released him and the Redskins claimed Cundiff. Originally, the decision of who should be kicker was going to be between Neil Rackers and Graham Gano. But, in a classic Redskins move, the Redskins released both Rackers and Gano and signed Cundiff to be the teams kicker.
The Redskins have a pretty decent roster coming into this season. The only positions that they will have to worry about will be the usual ones: offensive line and secondary. They made some strides in those areas this offseason, but those will still be the two weakest areas on the Redskins team.
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