Apart from the NFL Draft last month, the only real news about the Redskins lately has been the question of whether John Beck will be the starting quarterback for the team in 2011. [All this assumes the NFL will play football in 2011.]
All this is happening for several reasons First, Head Coach Mike Shanahan benched veteran QB Donovan McNabb for the final three games of the 2010 season after weeks of leaked speculation that McNabb had lost the confidence of Shanahan and his son Kyle, the team's offensive coordinator. The season ended with McNabb out of favor and clearly desiring a ticket out of town. Meanwhile, #2 QB Rex Grossman, a favorite of Kyle Shanahan's from their days with the Houston Texans, proved in those three starts to end the season that he's exactly what he's always been - streaky, inconsistent, turnover-prone and inaccurate. McNabb has a contract that can be voided just before the beginning of the regular season - whenever that is - and Rex Grossman isn't under contract at all. Only John Beck, who is under contract, seems certain to be in Washington in 2011.
The second reason the Beck boomlet is happening is the Redskins passed on the QB position in the 2011 NFL Draft. Sitting at 10 in the first round the Redskins had the chance to draft University of Missouri star passer Blaine Gabbert, whom many had once thought would be drafted first overall by the Carolina Panthers. Instead, the Redskins traded down in the first round for extra picks, selected an outside linebacker to assist the anemic pass rush and then proceeded to ignore the quarterback position in rounds two through seven. The Redskins managed to draft a nose tackle, two wide receivers, two running backs and even an offensive line [though only one], but they never selected a single quarterback. With McNabb clearly out of favor for his inaccuracy, Grossman not under contract and no rookie signal-callers in sight, John Beck moved to the front of the line, almost by default. That's the same John Beck who hasn't started an NFL game since 2007, when he went 0-4 with an awful Miami Dolphins team that finished the season 1-15.
Right after the NFL Draft Shanahan began talking up Beck as a perfectly rational choice to start the season at the game's most important position. Coming out in the 2007 NFL Draft, Beck "was by far my No. 1 guy," Shanahan said in late April. [The Dolphins took Beck in the 2nd round.]