Point-Counterpoint: High stakes?

Point-Counterpoint: High stakes?
December 2, 2011, 1:54 pm
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By Rich Tandler and Ryan OHalloran
Redskins Insiders
Even though the 4-7 Redskins are very much a long shot to make the playoffs, it doesnt mean that their remaining games are meaningless. Individually, there are many players with a lot to play for.Which Redskins player has the most at stake in these last five games? Rich Tandler and Ryan OHalloran debate the topic in this weeks edition of Point-Counterpoint.Rich TandlerThe Redskins have nine players who will be unrestricted free agents next spring. One of the biggest names on the list is that of LaRon Landry. He has his shot to score a big-money contract but he needs to be able to stay healthy. A groin injury is the latest setback that many sideline him for his fourth game this season. He needs to be on the field and playing at a high level if he wants to be able to cash in.Ryan OHalloranIll start with quarterback Rex Grossman. When he re-assumed the starting duties, it was obvious the Redskins were headed toward a disaster of a season (12-game losing streak to finish things off?) and a top-five pick. The offense was not ineffective it was becoming clear the Redskins would have to draft a quarterback who would need to be ready by next years opener. Now? The Redskins winning hurts their draft position, but if Grossman can finish the year strong, Mike Shanahan may decide that picking a passer in rounds 2 or 3 and having Rex start the year is a better option than trading picks to get a top-5 quarterback.TandlerIts hard to see Shanny staking his future on a third-round QB no matter how well Rex does in the remaining five games, but well see. How about Ryan Torain? Heres a 25-year-old running back with very low mileage who led the team in rushing last year. He was a beast against the Rams and then he disappeared. It looks like Roy Helu is the future and they want Tim Hightower back if his knee injury heals so where does that leave Torain? Hell probably get an opportunity before the year is out and he has to make the most of it. Torain has to either convince the Redskins that hes worth keeping or put enough good play on film to draw the interest of another team.OHalloran Ill throw out a curveball to wrap this up Brian Orakpo. A third-year player, he is second on the Redskins with six sacks, but hes no longer the teams best outside linebacker (that goes to rookie Ryan Kerrigan). Nonetheless, hes the rare asset and if the Redskins want to get better, they could float him on the trade market. Theyll need help at safety, running back, receiver and the offensive line. Orakpo needs to use the last five games to prove he can do enough things to help this team next year.You can reach Ryan OHalloran by email at rohalloran@comcastsportsnet.com and you can email Rich Tandler atRTandlerCSN@comcast.net . Follow Ryan on Twitter @ryanohalloran and follow Rich @Rich_Tandler.