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#HailMail: Looking Ahead To The 2020 Season


Head Coach Ron Rivera held his first team-wide meeting on Monday to set his goals and expectations this season and beyond. Here's what fans want to know as the Redskins continue preparing for the 2020 campaign:

Have any of the newest draft picks signed a contract yet? And if so, which ones and for how many years? -- Patrick G.

While several franchises have announced the signings of draft picks, the Redskins have yet to do so for their eight selections.

Per NFL rules, all draft picks will sign four-year contracts with from the franchise that drafts them. Only first-round picks have fifth-year options, meaning the team can choose to retain them for an additional year.

Since Chase Young was the No. 2 overall pick, the Redskins will have a chance to keep him under contract through 2024. Their other seven draft picks will be under contract through 2023. Learn more about the team's 2020 draft class, HERE.

With the remote installation of the new system and playbook, what are the odds that Kyle Allen gets the starting job over Dwayne Haskins? -- Brian J.

That's a worthwhile question, but I think the odds are very slim.

The Redskins are going into training camp believing Dwayne Haskins Jr. is the starting quarterback, and an impending competition with newcomer Kyle Allen probably won't change their thinking.

Yes, Allen is familiar with the coaching staff and worked closely with Scott Turner, now the Redskins' offensive coordinator, at Carolina. He knows the playbook and has ample experience in the system.

But Haskins is the more talented of the two and seen by many as the quarterback of the future. He's hell-bent on proving that during second season with the Redskins.

The only scenario where Allen might supplant Haskins as the starter is if training camps are wiped out and teams only have a few weeks to prepare for the regular season. In that case, it might make sense for Allen to start while Haskins continues familiarizing himself with the offense.

But even then, the Redskins could start Haskins right away. They believe in his ability.

Any chance the Redskins keep five running backs on the roster since Gibson can play receiver? -- Tim F.

Barring something unusual, the Redskins will enter training camp with seven running backs: Peyton Barber, Josh Ferguson, Antonio Gibson, Derrius Guice, Bryce Love, J.D. McKissic and Adrian Peterson.

Peterson, Guice, McKissic and Gibson all seem like roster locks for varying reasons. Peterson provides veteran leadership and was the team's leading rusher the past two years, while Guice, despite playing five games over his first two NFL seasons, could be the best all-around back when healthy. The Redskins also need McKissic as a third-down option after not re-signing Chris Thompson, and they just drafted Gibson in the third round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

The biggest wild card in all of this is Love. He was seen as a first-round prospect before he returned to Stanford for his senior season and subsequently tore his ACL, which forced his draft stock to plummet. The Redskins ended up selecting him in the fourth round of 2019, but he has yet to make his professional debut.

The Redskins kept four running backs on their active roster throughout most of last season, but I see them keeping five in 2020 -- Gibson, Guice, Love, McKissic and Peterson -- as long as Love is healthy. And a big reason for that, like you mentioned, Tim, is because of Gibson's ability to line up at wide receiver as well.

What is the status with Trey Quinn? -- Stuart S.

Trey Quinn missed the final four games of last season with a concussion, but he should he ready to go whenever the Redskins return to the field.

Despite beginning the year as the starting slot receiver, Quinn made just 28 catches for 198 yards and one touchdown across 12 games (six starts).

His replacement, undrafted rookie Steven Sims Jr., hauled in 20 receptions for 230 yards and four touchdowns over the final four contests.

Even though Sims had steadier quarterback play than Quinn, he's still likely the frontrunner to start in the slot. But Quinn will still have plenty of opportunities to prove himself as a value contributor.

With the selection of Chase Young, that puts Jonathan Allen, Daron Payne with Matt Ioannidis primarily rotating inside. Does that mean we will have to lose Tim Settle? Because he would be a big loss -- Art T.

Don't worry, Tim Settle will still contribute for the Redskins.

Depth is very important along the defensive line. And if you don't believe me, look no further than Washington's regular season opener with the Philadelphia Eagles last season.

With Caleb Brantley nursing a foot injury and Jonathan Allen leaving the game with a leg injury in the first quarter, Settle, Matt Ioannidis and Daron Payne were the only healthy interior linemen. Ioannidis and Payne were forced to play 87% and 77% percent of the snaps, respectively, and by the end of the third quarter, the Eagles' run game wore them down in an eventual 32-27 loss.

Switching to a 4-3 defense allows for two defensive tackles instead of three, but that does not mean Settle will be squeezed out of the rotation. The 2018 fifth-round pick has improved every season and will be a crucial reserve on a deep and talented defensive line.

What are the odds of the Redskins trading Ryan Kerrigan this season or next year? If so, what do you think we would get in return? -- Cody F.

Ryan Kerrigan's career in Washington appeared to be in jeopardy when a completely new coaching staff was announced in mid-January. Not only was Kerrigan entering the last year of a lucrative contract, but the Redskins were position to pair Montez Sweat with Young off the edge.

But at the NFL Scouting Combine in late February, Rivera said Kerrigan was in the team's plans for 2020. He's since praised the 31-year-old pass rusher on several occasions and included him whenever he spoke about the defensive line's potential.

There's still a chance the Redskins will let Kerrigan's contract expire after 2020, but I believe he becomes the franchise's sack leader this season and then signs a contract extension to stay in Washington. He's been a part of the Redskins since 2011, and I think he eventually finishes his career there.

The Redskins are fortunate to have stability at punter, placekicker, holder and long snapper. But who would step in for each of these if any one of them got injured during the game? -- Jeff H.

This is such a fun question that I'll do my best to answer.

Let's start with holder and punter Tress Way. If he went down, I imagine backup quarterback Kyle Allen would become the holder. As for who punts, I truthfully have no idea.

In the event kicker Dustin Hopkins got injured, Way would probably fill in. He actually was the punter and kicker as a freshman at Oklahoma and made all 11 of his extra points. He converted just one of his six field goals, though, before focusing solely on punting.

The only answer I'm confident about is the backup long snapper, which would be second-year linebacker Cole Holcomb. Starting long snapper Nick Sundberg revealed as much on the "Redskins Talk" podcast at training camp last year.

So there you have it: the reserve specialists for the Washington Redskins. Here's to hoping Hopkins, Way and Sundberg stay healthy.

Where do things stand with respect to Ryan Anderson's role on the team? It seems like switching to a 4-3 defense would help a player like him. -- Nick C.

Ryan Anderson is currently listed as a linebacker, so he'll likely compete with Holcomb, Thomas Davis Sr. and Shaun Dion Hamilton, among others, for one of the three starting spots.

The 6-foot-2, 255-pound Anderson seemed to be an ideal strong-side linebacker after playing defensive end his first three NFL seasons. Anderson, a second-round pick in 2017, emerged as a defensive playmaker towards the end of 2019, racking up seven quarterback hits, four sacks and four forced fumbles over the final six games.

When asked about a player poised to have a breakout season, defensive tackle Jonathan Allen highlighted his former Alabama teammate.

"I think it will be Ryan Anderson this year. I genuinely believe that," Allen said on The Kevin SheehanShowon May 1. "He's been working really hard, and I really think with this scheme, which is really going to help highlight his attributes and his skillset, I really think Ryan Anderson is going to have a really standout year for us."

Is it possible that with the cap flexibility, the Redskins might be able to add a vet or two after June 1 cuts from other teams? -- Dan O.

With four open roster spots and plenty of cap space, the Redskins could certainly make a few more additions between June 1 cuts and the start of training camp.

Washington signed two players in May: guard Mike Liedtke and cornerback Aaron Colvin. Liedtke will provide veteran depth along the offensive line, while Colvin could earn regular playing time in the secondary if he performs well.

The 28-year-old Colvin made 56 appearances for the Houston Texans between 2015-18 before being released after Week 1 of last season. He signed with the Redskins Sept. 10 and made 10 tackles and broke up a pass in seven games.

Will we ever see the Redskins play in the United Kingdom? -- Thomas P.

The Redskins actually played in London on Oct. 30, 2016, when they tied the Cincinnati Bengals, 27-27, in front of 84,448 fans at Wembley Stadium.

It remains to be seen when the burgundy and gold will travel there again, but based on the NFL's increased popularity in Europe, it should not be too long.

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