Hog’s Haven has a post giving their take on the 10 most irreplaceable Redskins for this season. I will let you go to the post to get the rationale for each, but here’s the list:
10 – Hunter Smith
9 – Derrick Dockery
8 – Fred Davis
7 – Brian Orakpo
6 – Santana Moss
5 – Jason Campbell
4 – Mike Sellers
3 – Clinton Portis
2 – Chris Samuels
1 – Albert Haynesworth
Sugar (the author’s handle) put a lot of thought into this and I think it’s a pretty good list, but below are the players I would comment on:
Hunter Smith – I love that the punter made it. If the relative qualities of the defense and offense play out as they look right now, we’re going to be in a lot of close games. Pinning the opponent deep a couple of times and turning the defensive line loose on them might tip the balance.
Fred Davis – I don’t think this one is in keeping with the premise of the post. I hope that Sugar’s optimism is justified. If Davis turns out to be that good it will only help, but it’s not like the TE position will be a weakness if he disappoints. Davis is potentially very exciting, but not essential.
Carlos Rogers – He needs to be elevated from Honorable Mention to the Top 10. There is no way to be sure if DeAngelo Hall will play as well as he did in a very brief audition last year, so if he struggles and Rogers is unavailable we’re stuck with Fred Smoot – who isn’t half the player he was during his first Redskin career – as our top corner. That is a disaster scenario. Rogers is an elite cover corner, despite his lousy hands, and behind him we have only unpredictability.
Albert Haynesworth/Chris Samuels – These two should be flipped, putting Samuels at #1, and Haynesworth might also be moved a couple notches down the list. Haynesworth is the factor that may elevate our defense from good to excellent, but without him our defense would still be decent. If Samuels goes down, on the other hand, the entire offense might fold and any progress made by Campbell or the receivers would be irrelevant.
If you think anyone should be added to the list, the ranking should be re-ordered, or if you disagree with any of the notes I tacked on, say so in the comments below.