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Offseason Champs No More?


I hesitate to say the Redskins have reverse-engineered their approach to team building, learning from nightmares past, but that does seem to the case under new GM Scot McCloughlan. A recap of their moves through the opening days of free agency:

*Depth D-lineman Ricky Jean-Francois for three years, $9 million ($4M guaranteed)
*Pass-rushing D-lineman Stephen Paea for four years, $21 million ($12.85M guaranteed)
*Run-stuffing 3-4 nose Terrance “Pot Roast” Knighton for one year, $4 million guaranteed
*Quality, 26-year-old cornerback Chris Culliver for four years, $32 million ($16M guaranteed)

Update: The Skins also signed 26-year-old strong safety Jeron Johnson for two years, $3.5 million. He was Kam Chancellor’s backup in Seattle, but he’ll probably start in D.C.

What they didn’t do: sign Brian Orakpo for four years, $32 million ($13.5M guaranteed). They let Tennessee do that, and there’s no takebacks if Rak tears a pec while signing on the line that is dotted.

So, a new leaf for the Skins? These are sensible deals addressing areas of major concern. Without doing the research, I’d say Washington had one of the worst defensive lines in football last season, as well as one of the worst secondaries. That was fun!

Now they’re improved on both fronts, and they’ve got a full boat of draft picks to use next month. This must be how quality organizations operate.

Added bonus: Both the Giants and Eagles land on Bill Barnwell’s top 10 *worst* free agent signings so far. #facts

D.C. sports fan and digital media guy that's been doing this since 2004. Once threw a football further than Chris Cooley.



  1. Ketel on Rocks

    March 13, 2015 at 11:08 AM

    The Offseason Champs label really hasn’t been applicable for awhile now. It’s kind of tiresome whenever the Skins sign someone to see #fantasyfootball #snyder on twitter. I mean c’mon, that was like 5 years ago. The era of cap-killing splashy free agent signings left with Ceratto.

    There were people rolling their eyes mumbling “fantasy football” with the Desean Jackson signing last year. Nevermind the fact it was a team friendly deal with minimal risk. But I guess that’s too nuanced for a #hottake.

    I mean, who’s been the worst FA signing for the Skins over the past 5 years? Josh Morgan? Meriweather? Luavao? I mean, they’re nothing special, but none of those guys qualify as significant busts or major hinderances to the cap.

    If anyone is vying for the Offseason Champs crown, look further north in Philly. I have a feeling that goat rodeo is not going to end well.

  2. Jamie Mottram

    March 13, 2015 at 11:35 AM

    RGIII was probably the last true Offseason Champs-style move, and that was three years ago.

  3. Ketel on Rocks

    March 13, 2015 at 11:48 AM

    Understood, but I was addressing free agency.

    And to be honest, I didn’t have a problem with them making that RGIII trade even knowing it had potential to come up snakeyes. If you’re going to go big, you do it for the next decade’s franchise QB.

    There’s a big difference between that, and say, Haynesworth.

  4. Jamie Mottram

    March 13, 2015 at 11:49 AM

    Word. I was far more bothered by the McNabb trade than the RGIII one.

    • SiPhi

      March 13, 2015 at 4:49 PM

      Same here. The Griffin one actually had me super excited. I celebrated like we won a playoff game the night that trade was announced.

  5. Illformula

    March 14, 2015 at 10:49 AM

    Very encouraging stuff from the front office. To your point, the moves feel good even if they’re not spectacular and really more so smartly addressing needs with what’s on the market. Id like to buy Mr. McCloughan a drink.

    The shot at Orakpo wasn’t called for though, even if it’s funny.

  6. das_pig

    March 16, 2015 at 11:44 AM

    @Illformula – regarding buying McCloughan a drink, you sure that’s such a good idea? (too soon?)

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