- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The Washington Times’ Ryan O’Halloran will examine one Redskins position group each day until Sunday, when the team reports to training camp. Today: Receivers and tight ends.

Who’s back: Receivers Santana Moss, David Patten, Taylor Jacobs, James Thrash and Jimmy Farris and tight ends Chris Cooley, Mike Sellers and Robert Johnson.

Who’s new: Brandon Lloyd (trade from San Francisco) and Antwaan Randle El (free agent from Pittsburgh) bolster the receiving corps and veteran tight end Christian Fauria was signed from New England.

Overview: The Moss acquisition last year was a home run — he had 84 catches for 1,483 yards and made his first Pro Bowl. But the four other receivers combined for only 48 catches. That need was addressed with Lloyd and Randle El, who will likely fill the second and third spots. Fauria is replacing Robert Royal at tight end, joining Cooley (71 catches, seven touchdowns) and Sellers (12 catches, seven TDs).

Key issues: 1. Is Taylor Jacobs still the odd receiver out? Probably. If the Redskins decide to keep Patten, that leaves Moss, Lloyd, Randle El and special teams ace Thrash on the active roster. But Jacobs could survive with a solid camp and if Patten attracts trade interest from a team desperate for a second or third receiver.

2. With the new receivers, what will be Cooley’s role? He was second on the Redskins in catches, touchdowns and yards (774). The addition of Lloyd and Randle El probably means he won’t meet those numbers this year. But he’ll still be productive — he’s that good. Look for Cooley to line up in a variety of positions and catch passes all over the field as one of quarterback Mark Brunell’s favorite targets.

Tomorrow: Defensive line

Got a question about the Redskins? Starting in training camp, the Times will be running a weekly Redskins Mailbag. Send questions to Ryan O’Halloran at [email protected]washingtontimes.com

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