The Washington Redskins have heard many times over the past few seasons if the injuries that have decimated their roster never happened then perhaps they could’ve been a playoff contender.
The Redskins have been one of the hardest-hit teams with injuries over the past two seasons. Those untimely injuries have happened at times when the Burgundy and Gold have started to put things together on the field and were fielding competitive units.
Last season, the Redskins were 6-3 and in sole possession of the top spot in the NFC East before starting quarterback Alex Smith suffered a season-ending and perhaps career-ending leg break. Washington never recovered from Smith’s injury mentally or physically and watched as their promising first-half start to the 2018 campaign spiraled out of control. The Redskins would go on to win once more in their remaining seven contest.
As training camp approaches in three weeks and the start of a new season brings optimism, the Redskins will have to move past the injuries that have defined them. Despite those injuries, the Redskins will need their defense and specifically five core players to play at a pro bowl level if they are going to have any success in 2019.
Who are the five players and why do they need to play at their full capabilities?
1. CB Josh Norman
He may be the victim of his own success in Carolina where he was a mainstay who helped the Panthers 2015 team reach the Super Bowl.
Again, Norman hasn’t played poorly but he hasn’t been the lights out, lockdown corner the team has needed him to be. To his defense, he has played with several different teammates in the secondary since his arrival and also has watched the team build up its defensive line over the past few seasons.
Defensively everything is in place for the former Coastal Carolina star to have a big season with the additions of several frontline defenders like pro bowl safety Landon Collins and rookie outside linebacker Montez Sweat to pair with veteran stars, Ryan Kerrigan and Jonathan Allen.