ASHBURN — Thursday’s preseason finale against the Baltimore Ravens could be the last time fans see Dwayne Haskins in action for awhile — at least until the Redskins’ coaches decide the first-round quarterback is ready to start full-time.
Eventually, the Redskins will turn to Haskins. He’s expected to be an important part of their future, after all.
But the same can’t be said for every teammate on the field with Haskins Thursday — some will be fighting to make Washington’s 53-man roster.
With the Redskins resting their starters and key reserves, the fourth preseason game is one last shot for players to impress. The Redskins and the rest of the NFL will cut down from 90 players to 53 on Saturday.
“All these guys that are playing (Thursday) are playing for a reason,” coach Jay Gruden said. “We need to see more from them.”
Here’s a look at some players who could use a good showing.
⦁ Receiver Robert Davis: The Redskins’ tightest position battle will take place at wide receiver. Josh Doctson, who appears to be on the bubble, most likely won’t play — so that leaves even more room for wideouts like Cam Sims and Davis to showcase why they should fill the last two spots. Davis, a 2017 sixth-rounder coming off a gruesome leg injury, has had an impressive preseason, even making plays on special teams last week.
But in the event Doctson isn’t traded or released, Davis’ odds to make the roster become that much longer. It would be a surprise if the Redskins kept more than six receivers.
⦁ Tight end J.P. Holtz: The Redskins could really use a fourth tight end on their final roster, especially with Jordan Reed still in concussion protocol. The problem: There isn’t an obvious candidate for the spot. Vernon Davis and Jeremy Sprinkle are locks as the second and third tight ends, but the other three tight ends haven’t made a strong case.
Undrafted rookie Donald Parham is an athletic wonder, but still very raw. Matt Flanagan, who didn’t practice this week with an injury, is a solid blocker with a nonideal trait of dropping passes. That leaves Holtz, who was activated from the practice squad late last season.
⦁ Safety Jeremy Reaves: The Redskins kept five safeties last year in part because Kenny Ladler’s strong training camp carved him out a roster spot as the fifth. This year, Reaves, a 5-foot-11 safety out of South Alabama. could be making a similar case to the coaching staff. Reaves has quietly flown under the radar since being signed to the practice squad last year. But the Redskins value depth and Washington hasn’t had stability at the safety position in years. Reaves could be a good insurance option.
⦁ Defensive lineman Ryan Bee: As Bee conducted an interview inside the locker room this week, his teammates nearby cheered. They appeared happy Bee, an undrafted free agent out of Marshall, was receiving some recognition. At 6-foot-7 and 283 pounds, Bee could make the roster — but only if Washington determines it wants to keep six defensive linemen. Jonathan Allen, Daron Payne, Matt Ioannidis, Tim Settle and Caleb Brantley will make the 53, though the Redskins have kept at least six defensive linemen throughout Gruden’s tenure. Gruden said Bee did a nice job on the inside after Washington’s first preseason game in Cleveland.