2015 RANKINGS: Offense – 17th (Passing 11th, Rushing 20) Defense – 28th (Passing 25, Rushing 26)
Key Offseason transactions: Signings – CB Josh Norman, DE Kendall Reyes, S David Bruton, LB Terrence Garvin. Losses – RB Alfred Morris, QB Robert Griffin III, DE Frank Kearse, LB Keenan Robinson.
2016 DRAFT: 1. WR Josh Doctson TCU
2. S Su’a Cravens USC
3. CB Kendall Fuller Virginia Tech
5. DT Matt Ioannidis Temple
6. QB Nate Sudfeld Indiana
7. LB Steven Daniels Boston College
Summary: The Washington Redskins went 9-7 in 2015, on their way to winning the NFC East. They went on to lose 35 – 18 to the Green Bay Packers in the first round of the playoffs. Washington should have a potent offense lead by up and coming quarterback Kurt Cousins. Cousins had over four thousand yards passing and a 29/11 touchdown to interception ratio. There are no shortage of weapons for him to play with, including tight end Jordan Reed who lead the team in receiving yards last season. The Steelers struggled against quality tight ends last year, and will have their hands full with Reed. The Redskins have plenty of big play receivers like Pierre Garcon, Desean Jackson, and first round pick Josh Doctson. Second year running back Matt Jones will get the majority of the carries this season. Jones is an unproven back, and it remains to be seen if he can become an impact player. On defense is where the Redskins struggled last season. They did add All-Pro cornerback Josh Norman to bolster the secondary. He will have a chance to prove his worth, matching up against Antonio Brown. Linebacker Ryan Kerrigan lead the team in sacks with 9.5, but the team was in the bottom half for sacks in the NFL. The real weakness for the Redskins defense is against the run. They were 26th in the league, giving up an average of 124 yards per game. DeAngelo Williams could be in for a big game Monday night, as well as the rest of the Steelers offense.
This game promises to be a huge task for Pittsburgh’s banged up defense. Their redzone defense was very good last season, and that may be the key to this game Monday night. In the end, the Steelers will have to out score the Redskins to pull out a victory.