Thursday, February 4, 2016

Redskins Brass Face Upcoming Free Agent Decisions

Kirk Cousins:
Fear not, for Captain Kirk will unequivocally be donning the burgundy and gold in 2016—and well beyond. Besides, his viral catchphrase is enough reason to keep him around. Look for him to be a strong candidate for the franchise tag, though.

Colt McCoy:
McCoy, drafted by the Cleveland Browns 85th overall in the 2010 NFL Draft, has yet to make a name for himself as a reliable starter. However, he may have found his niche as Kirk Cousins' backup quarterback. When duty called, McCoy played well and has shown enough for Washington to retain him. At this stage in his career, it would be hard to imagine another team offering McCoy a starting role.

Alfred Morris:
Nice guys finish last; just ask Alfred Morris. During his outstanding 2012 rookie season with the Redskins, he was quickly recognized as an elite running back. A man of faith and perseverance, Morris is a team player and role model for not only the fans, but for other players as well. Having a good heart, though, does not produce results on the field where it truly counts. Morris' numbers have declined since that magical season when he helped carry his team into the playoffs. Head coach Jay Gruden believes that last year's draft pick, Matt Jones, is their RB of the future. This leaves Morris with a great opportunity to test the free agent waters and sign a (potentially) lucrative contract elsewhere.

Pierre Thomas:
A late signing for the Redskins as they made their playoff push, Thomas immediately stepped in and helped contribute at the RB position. At 31 years old, however, his best days are behind him. Still, Thomas is a smart, reliable athlete who could add depth, if the price is right.

Darrel Young:
Much like Morris, Young has seen a decreased workload over the past few seasons. Despite that, he has made it clear he wants to stay in Washington. The need for a dynamic fullback is often overlooked, but with limited cap space and pressing needs elsewhere, Young should not be re-signed.

Logan Paulsen:
By no means should No. 82 be re-signed. There simply isn't a use for his mediocre play at the tight end position. Niles Paul and Derek Carrier are both recovering from injuries, so look for Scot McCloughan to draft a big-bodied TE in this year's draft.

Alex Smith:
Similar to Paulsen's situation, Smith lacks the talent to warrant an open spot on the 53-man roster.

Josh LeRibeus:
The Redskins wasted a third-round draft pick on LeRibeus, it's as simple as that. He was described as having arms that were too short and being overweight. Well, his arms didn't grow and his weight is still mostly there. Having to fill in for injured starter Kory Lichensteiger, LeRibeus was subpar and struggled mightily with his snaps. BYE FELICIA!

Terrance Knighton:
Pot Roast had a solid, but not spectacular, first year in Washington. He brought more stability to the defensive line—something the team has been lacking for quite some time. Sure, he will turn 30 this summer, had migraine issues, and signed a one-year, prove-it deal last offseason due to weight concerns. But, unless McCloughan drafts a defensive tackle early on, Knighton should stick around for at least another season.

Keenan Robinson:
After becoming the starting inside linebacker in 2014, Robinson notched 109 tackles (13 games), and appeared to be the perfect replacement for London Fletcher. However, this past season was a different story—starting only eight games due to injury and overall performance. Robinson is only 26 years old though, and fellow ILB Perry Riley has not stepped up. Assuming the 'Skins finally release Riley (who counts for $5 million against the cap), and do not retain Robinson, who's left to fill the voids? Perhaps this is another position McCloughan will address on Draft Day, or even free agency.

Mason Foster:
Playing alongside tackling machine Will Compton, Foster filled in well for the injured Perry Riley Jr. Foster, 26, could be a cheaper, slightly better alternative to Riley Jr., assuming that's the route the organization chooses. Regardless, the world will not end if he leaves and signs elsewhere.

Junior Galette:
This is a no-brainer. The Redskins need more pass rushers, Galette racked up 22 sacks in just two seasons with New Orleans, and he has been quite vocal about staying here in Washington. In fact, he recently tattooed the Redskins logo onto his arm. Galette is not going anywhere, and is motivated to prove himself this upcoming season.

Kedric Golston:
Somehow this guy keeps sneaking his way onto the roster year after year. A decent backup, Golston has played all 10 seasons with the Redskins, but it would be surprising to see him re-signed at this point in his career, unless injuries arise along the defensive line.

Frank Kearse:
A seventh-round pick by the Miami Dolphins, the 27-year-old Kearse has bounced around in his short NFL career thus far. Last year, he played in four games, notching only 4 tackles and 1 sack. McCloughan will find a player with more upside than Kearse has to offer.

Will Blackmon:
Originally signed by Washington due to injuries at the defensive back positions, Blackmon ended up starting 10 games and had a career year. He would provide quality depth next year if the Redskins so choose to re-sign him at a reasonable price.

Cary Williams:
Signed late in the season for depth purposes, Williams barely had time to settle in. The Redskins will utilize the draft for adding cornerbacks to the roster.