Brian Orakpo will benefit from a year off
Over the next few weeks, Insiders Tarik El-Bashir and Rich Tandler will take a position-by-position look at the Redskins’ depth chart.
Some battles are straightforward. Others could get complicated. This much, however, cannot be debated: A player is not on the 53-man roster until its finalized Aug 31.
So who’s in? And who’s in jeopardy? Up today …
Position: Right tackle
On the roster: Tyler Polumbus, Jeremy Trueblood, Tony Pashos
Likely to make the 53: Polumbus
Comment: Right tackle was near the top of everyone’s “needs” list before free agency and the draft but the limited moves the Redskins made at the position indicated that they are happy with Polumbus. One of those moves was to re-sign Polumbus to a two-year contract after he received some interest from the Jaguars.
At least they are happy enough with Polumbus, who started 15 games at right tackle in 2012, line him up with the first team throughout the offseason program. That doesn’t mean he won’t get pushed by Trueblood, Pashos, or backup left tackle Tom Compton during training camp. But even if Polumbus isn’t the starter at right tackle he’ll be on the roster as the swing tackle and emergency interior lineman (he has started four games at left guard during his five-year career).
He may not be a favorite of fans or analysts but the Redskins led the league in rushing and in yards per offensive play with Polumbus at right tackle and they may well be inclined to roll with him again in 2013.
Battling for a job: Trueblood, Pashos
Comment: Offensive line coach Chris Foerster said that Trueblood and Pashos are both strictly right tackles. This does not bode well for the future of either veteran unless one of them is able to unseat Polumbus. Mike Shanahan prefers reserve offensive linemen who can play multiple positions.
Pashos was out of football last year after the Browns released him during the 2012 offseason due to a foot ailment. The Bucs did not attempt to bring back Trueblood after seven seasons in Tampa Bay after he landed on injures reserve last year with a shoulder injury. Both players appear to have completely recovered from their injuries.
Second-year player Tom Compton is working as a backup left tackle but he could move to the right side, which is where he worked most of last year.
We discussed rookie free agents Xavier Nixon and Jacolby Ashworth with the left tackles but they could up getting some time on the right side as the preseason rolls on.