Part of what has made professional football America’s game is because of the parity inherent to the National Football League.
In a sport where the difference between dominance and mediocrity is slight, and the addition of key playmakers can turn a team around, there’s no reason to believe that any given team can’t succeed.
In recent years, the Redskins have been a perfect example of that theory. In 2011, the team gets off to a fast start, but flounders, winning just three of the team’s last 13 games.
After retaining most of the roster and 21-of-22 starters, the team deflates in 2013, failing to win consecutive games and going on an eight-game slide to end the campaign.
As the offseason continues, the question on everyone’s mind is how this team will fare in the 2014 season? According to CBS Sports lead writer Will Brinson, the Redskins may have the biggest range of record of any team in the NFL.
“Unquestionably, one of the biggest ranges,” he said in an exclusive interview with Redskins.com’s Brian Tinsman. “The variance for what their 2014 could be anything from a repeat of last year to a Super Bowl contender.
“All you have to do is get into the playoffs and you can make a run.”
Brinson acknowledged that last year’s struggles were the result of a perfect storm of bad luck and internal strife that turned a good team on its head.
Heading into 2014 with a relatively healthy roster and the resources to add impact talent, the Redskins are a prime candidate to bounce back in equally dramatic fashion.
“They have a quarterback and I believe in RG3,” he said candidly. “I think he’s a capable franchise quarterback; that he can justify what they gave up for him.
“I think Griffin is the type of quarterback that can get hot, carry them into the playoffs.”
The flipside of that coin is a scenario that every team must face at some point: a catastrophic meltdown like the ones experienced in Washington, Houston and Atlanta last season.
“If you look at what happened last year, where things don’t go right, yes, they’re capable of being the second worst team in the NFL.”
With that being said, Brinson is leaning more towards the Redskins as a team with a solid foundation capable to building momentum over the next several seasons.
“I don’t know if I would pick them to win the division if I was picking right now, but I would at least entertain the thought,” he explained. “The eagles should be good under Chip Kelly again, but I don’t think [quarterback] Nick Foles is the answer.
“The Giants could bounce back, the Cowboys are probably going to be 8-8, and then it’s a very up-in-the-air division.
“So I think that they can make the playoffs, but they could also be picking in the top five again next year.”