RB Roy Helu
- Under Mike Shanahan, it’s always hard to figure out which RB is going to have the most carries as he likes to incorporate an interchangeable system with multiple players.
However, Roy Helu is a player who is just starting to garner a lot of buzz. At 5-11, Helu is small and fast enough to dodge tackles and be difficult to bring down in the open field.
His explosive cuts and bursts of agility show his potential as a dynamic playmaker to watch on a weekly basis.
Helu also possesses good hands on screen plays as he caught 49 passes for 379 yards which adds to his versatility. Of course, it’s hard to predict what Shanahan will do with his running backs as he has Tim Hightower and Evan Royster who were both successful at times last season.
Yet, with RGIII under center, Helu looks like the best Redskins' RB and is set for a breakout season.
TE Fred Davis
- Fred Davis had a season filled with highs and lows. In the first 13 weeks, Davis emerged over Chris Cooley as the team’s best TE by amassing 796 yards and 3 touchdowns which is especially impressive considering Rex Grossman and John Beck were his QBs.
However, his breakout season ended abruptly when he got suspended for the final four games for marijuana use. An embarrassing drug suspension derailed his season and may have played a factor in why he’s now playing under the franchise tag rather than a long-term contract.
Yet, if Davis is able to mature and bounce back, he has the potential to be one of the best tight ends in the NFL with the explosive RGIII in the pocket. Davis can get downfield quickly and his physical strength allows him to bust through tackles and gain plenty of yards after the catch (he was fifth amongst all tight ends in the NFL in YAC).
With the athletic RGIII who can move quickly out of the pocket and extend plays, Davis could greatly benefit as the young quarterback's safety valve.
WR Pierre Garcon
- Garcon got a massive deal this offseason when he signed a five-year, $42.5 million contract with the Redskins. The former Indy WR will now be the top threat for rookie Robert Griffin III who undoubtedly is an upgrade over Rex Grossman.
Yet, RGIII may struggle in his first season and that may be difficult for Garcon to overcome who had his best years under the experienced Peyton Manning. Garcon also brings his own struggles as he isn’t the best route-runner and has been plagued with crucial dropped passes.
Garcon will also need teammates like Santana Moss, Leonard Hankerson and Josh Morgan to draw coverage away from him as he isn’t the most physical player.
If Hankerson and Morgan don’t step up, safeties will also focus on Garcon who’ll struggle to get open often. In the end, Garcon is a lively big-play threat but he needs to be more dependable as he only had three games last season with 100 or more yards. Garcon will need to become more consistent or he’ll be just another Washington acquisition who failed to live up to his gigantic contract.
WR Santana Moss
- Age has unfortunately caught up with the explosive Santana Moss as he wasn’t able to break down opposing defenses in the open field with his speed. Moss suffered a broken hand last season which made him miss a month but even when he was healthy, his production dropped due to his fading skills and the Redskins’ lackluster QB play.
Moss may still be able to bounce back with RGIII but he’ll have to fight for targets amongst Garcon, Davis, Hankerson and Morgan. Moss is an experienced veteran but 2011 may have indicated that he just isn’t the same receiver anymore.