Can Filling Needs at Some Positions Help the Lack of Talent at Other Positions?
By DC Staff Writer John Manuel:
After the first hour of the league year, most people would say that the Redskins have been fairly quiet. Maybe it’s because of the ridiculous move by Roger Goodell, the NFL owners and NFLPA that was pulled on them and the Cowboys costing them loads of cap space. That’s probably it for sure.
We may never know what plans Mike Shanahan and Bruce Allen had up until 2pm that Tuesday. Filling important starting vacancies with Robert Griffin III, Pierre Garcon, Josh Morgan and resigning Adam Carriker got everyone’s attention quickly. But since then it’s been very quiet.
With expectantly sudden minimal cap space caused by pathetic Commissioner and NFLPA Executive Director, the Redskins front office has looked to turn toward low priced veterans to fill depth areas. With not a whole lot of talent in the defensive backfield, Washington has signed veterans Brandon Merriweather, Cedric Griffin, Madeiu Williams and former Skin Leigh Torrance.
Merriweather, a former Pro Bowler will get attention but being with 3 teams in the past year is a red flag. I was not a Laron Landry guy, so letting him walk, or hobble out of Redskins Park was not a problem with me. Landry frustrated me more than his random big hit would excite me. I feel Merriweather is not a drop off from what we got from Landry. Cedric Griffin is a wild card. He could easily beat out Kevin Barnes as the 3rd corner, but maybe he was brought in to work at safety. Time will tell but I like the signing either way. If they get anything from Madieu (Terps Baby!) or Torrance, it will be a bonus. The secondary came into the off season as a concern, but I am not as concerned at most, and here’s why.
Shanahan and Allen have done two things I am most impressed with so far. One is simple. Going and getting the #2 pick to get most likely RG3. I like it more and more every day. The other is the way they have built up the front seven on defense. Between signing Bowen and Cofield, trading for Carriker and resigning him, and drafting Jenkins, we have a solid core of four for the defensive line.
Add in potential depth lineman in Kedric Golston, Truck Neild, Kentwan Balmer, and Darrion Scott and this is the best the defensive front has looked since Big Daddy and Stubby (joking). Not only can they be dominant, but they have depth to make it through injuries and keep lineman fresh.
You only have to look at the Giants to see how D line depth can lead to wins. As for the linebacking core, the team will have to add depth up the middle. Outside, the combo or Orakpo and Kerrigan can grow and be special. Rob Jackson has shown he can fill in when needed. The middle still needs to be addressed, since as of today are only sitting with Perry Riley. Feeling is London Fletcher will be resigned at some point. Adding in the draft or through free agency is a must.
Figuring next on the agenda is offensive line through available free agents or the draft. I wouldn’t mind seeing if they can move that early 3rd rounder into a late 3rd rounder and receive a 2013 2nd or 3rd also. It would help if a team would hire Vinny Cerrato before the draft to pull that off though.
The front seven with a good rotation should be able to make up for a shaky secondary. For all fans, even if the defense is a disaster, you have to remember that we are going from Rex and Beck to RG3 next year. Although it was never boring with RG3 (Rex), it sure isn’t going to be boring with RG3 (Robert).