There are about 90 players on the roster of the Washington Redskins right now, but the team will have to trim down to a final roster of 53 before the start of the 2016 season. Here is an early look at what that roster might look like, position by position. We begin today with quarterback. Starters in bold.
ON THE ROSTER: Kirk Cousins, Colt McCoy, Nate Sudfeld
LIKELY TO MAKE THE ROSTER: Kirk Cousins, Colt McCoy, Nate Sudfeld
ANALYSIS: This is probably the simplest position on the team to predict. Cousins is clearly the team’s starter and will earn $19.95 million this year under the franchise tag, assuming he plays with it. The team and Cousins have until July 15 to work out a multi-year contract. If they cannot, Cousins plays under the franchise tag. Cousins will get a hefty raise from $600,000 to $20 million and the Skins get one more year to evaluate Cousins and decide if he’s the future of the franchise at quarterback. Cousins set several franchise passing records last season and led the team’s offensive revival and subsequent division championship. Can he repeat the performance or even improve on it? We will see.
Colt McCoy, with his own multi-year contract in hand, is securely in place as the number two quarterback. McCoy would like to be a starter, of course, but he had a chance to look around the league this offseason and obviously concluded his best option was to remain in Washington as Cousins insurance. McCoy likes the coaches and the offensive system and the coaches like him and trust him to run the system if and when he has to play.
The Skins like Sudfeld. They like his size [6’6″ and 234 lbs] and his arm strength and think he can develop into a real NFL quarterback. Washington took Sudfeld in the sixth round so they have plans for him, but if he ever turns into an NFL-caliber quarterback, it will be years from now. Washington has Cousins for at least another season and McCoy for another two or three seasons. Sudfeld could be sent to the practice squad, leaving the team with only two active quarterbacks, but right now I’ll guess that he makes the team as the third quarterback.