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Checking In On the 2005 Draft Class

For most young players in the NFL, the biggest transition is from their rookie campaign to their sophomore year. The Redskins' 2005 draft class is no exception.

Washington selected six players overall in the 2005 NFL Draft, and only sixth-round pick Jared Newberry has departed. (Newberry was waived by the team last August and is currently with the Tennessee Titans.)

Carlos Rogers was the only Redskins draft pick to develop into a starter last year. Still, Rogers had to battle injuries and he only started five regular-season games. Coaches still felt comfortable enough in his development to have him start both of the team's playoff games, however.

What to expect from the Redskins' 2005 draft class this season?

With the Redskins in the midst of OTAs and the June 16-18 mini-camp looming, the five players face challenges as they continue to establish themselves in the NFL.

Carlos Rogers, CB

#### Jason Campbell, QB

The Redskins selected Campbell with the 25th overall selection the first round. He was listed as the third quarterback every game last season.

With Mark Brunell expected to enter training camp as the starter, Campbell will have to compete for a backup job once again. Brunell sustained a minor fracture in his left hand last week, so Campbell and veteran Todd Collins will get a long look in the upcoming mini-camp.

There's no doubt that Campbell is regarded as the quarterback of the future for the Redskins.

But unless there is a long-term injury to Brunell or there is poor play at the quarterback position, Campbell could face another season watching from the sidelines on game day.

Gibbs has always preferred that young quarterbacks soak in as much as they can, both on the field and in the classroom, before being forced into a starting role. (Former Redskins QB Mark Rypien did not get on the field in his first two NFL seasons.)

While there is mounting speculation over how far along Campbell is in his development, no one will really know his status until he gets on the field on Sundays. And once he does get on the field, his NFL learning curve will likely begin a whole new phase.

Manuel White, Jr., FB

#### Robert McCune, LB

The Redskins selected McCune with the 154th overall selection in the fifth round. He played in five games last season, performing mostly on special teams. He logged eight special teams tackles.

McCune, at 6-0 and 240 pounds, has spent his rookie season and the 2006 offseason learning both the middle and weak-side linebacker positions. That versatility, plus his special teams experience, should aid him in securing a roster spot this season.

It's unlikely that McCune will supplant Lemar Marshall in the middle, but McCune is in the mix for playing time at weak-side linebacker. The Redskins have a number of candidates at the weak-side, including returning veterans Warrick Holdman and Chris Clemons and 2006 second-round draft choice Roger McIntosh.

McCune will need to have a strong preseason to earn a starting nod. He will need to open eyes by displaying a strong knowledge of the defense and a nose for the ball.

Nehemiah Broughton, FB

The Redskins selected Broughton with the 222nd overall selection in the seventh round. Broughton saw action in four games last season, recording one carry for three yards and one special teams tackle.

Broughton is adjusting to the fullback position. At 5-11 and 255 pounds, he has the size to handle the change.

As discussed earlier, Broughton will likely compete with White for a backup fullback job. For coaches, the final decision could be a tough one in training camp.

White will need to adapt quickly to playing fullback. He may not have the advantage of playing the position in college that White has, but Broughton may have a step up in special teams play. Broughton was impressive on special teams in the '05 preseason, recording five tackles.

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