In Part 1 I listed the Redskins salary cap commitments by position and there was a clear breakdown between the $55.755 million spent on 27 offensive players and the $34.545 million spent on 19 defensive players. That was of course before I cut 10 players (two were special teamers) in Part 3. Now with eliminating the bad contracts from the mix where does the team stand on a position-by-position basis and Offense vs Defense.
Couple Quick Notes:
-I will just break down the total money per position, if you want to see the individual players cap charges check out Part 1
-This will just be for the top 41 salaries, I’m not going to replace the ten cuts yet because they are all league minimum guys (and the Skins don’t have 10 guys who weren’t counted). Yes truly their will be $5 million (roughly) extra dollars allotted, but those are just place holders until guys start signing. They aren’t significant in terms of money or numbers of players per side of the ball.
-I’m not including the dead money for the cuts at positions or on either side of the ball. Both sides have significant amounts and really it is a sunk cost at this point.
-Despite cutting 5 offensive players, including 4 starters to just 3 defensive players (and kinda 2 starters), the Offense still has a significant lead on the defense both in money and players.
-And while there are more offensive players, six extra guys shouldn’t make up the $20 million difference in cap space. The defense clearly has to be the focus of the offseason, both in money and draft picks.
-Even after cutting four starting offensive linemen and the number 2 TE (who is going play some significant snaps) the offense is clearly more set than the defense before the start of free agency
-The offense clearly has LT, QB, RB, WR1 and TE locked down among the starters, as well as FB and the number two back among the significant contributors. Also if Hankerson is healthy he could be the WR2 or the slot WR filling another position. That leaves LG, C, RG, RT, TE2 and WR2/Slot as top needs (again assuming Hankerson’s health) as well as depth at a number of positions.
-The defense isn’t nearly as set. Only 1 DL position (i.e. Barry Cofield), LOLB and CB2 (assuming Amerson can handle the role) are set. Jarvis Jenkins could maybe handle another DL position, though he’s more of a role player than a starter. Beyond that you are just hoping that a Keenan Robinson, Phillip Thomas, Richard Crawford can recover from a season ending injury and be productive. All of those are bigger question marks than say Hankerson recovering on the offensive side. The other issue with the defense is you don’t have any top guys set. On offense the Skins have the LT, top WR, and top TE set. Cofield is the Redskins top DL by default, but ideally there should be a better lineman in the mix. Kerrigan plays on the left side which is the equivalent of a RT and Amerson at best is a number 2 corner and even that is a stretch. And the Skins don’t have either ILB or safety position set.
-The Redskins clearly have major needs on defense from both a quality and a quantity perspective. Not only will the Skins have to spend significant resources in terms of money and top picks on defenders, but they will also need to bring in some quality back-ups as well.