Before I begin, I would like to say I’m glad to be contributing something here on THN again. I’ve devoted a lot of time to school and my own site since I last posted here. I also want to say I’m glad Mark is doing well and I hope his recovery is full and never leads to a repeat.
Fred Davis is once again officially a member of the Washington Redskins. Davis became an unrestricted free agent this offseason, free to be courted by other teams who wanted to offer a contract for his services. The Redskins not once removed themselves from the discussion with Fred, who used agent Drew Rosenhaus’ infinite wisdom to have some fun with his free agent experience.
Fred’s initial interest was from the Cleveland Browns, but ultimately Davis and the Browns agreed on only one thing, that they couldn’t agree to terms. Davis also said at the time that money wouldn’t be the deciding factor in his decision on where to play.
Last weekend, Davis was wined and dined by Buffalo Bills brass in Washington, DC. Teams that fly out to a player’s home usually have great interest in that player and are as serious as they can be about signing him. Many Redskins fans felt Davis was wrong for going through with this, but I said then what stands true today: Fred Davis was simply lavishly soaking in the fact that someone was willing to buy him the best meal in the city and sing his praises for hours on end. Who wouldn’t want that kind of treatment? A lunatic, that’s who!
Davis eventually spent the week in Buffalo to meet with the Bills at their facility and get accustomed to a possible workplace. The New York Jets expressed interest and had a meeting set up for today but Davis decided to cancel that meeting the other night, leaving his choices between the Buffalo Bills and Washington Redskins.
This morning, fans awoke to news that Fred Davis had agreed to terms on a one-year contract with the Washington Redskins. This is significant for the following reasons:
- Fred Davis took significantly less money ($700,000 less this season) to play for the Redskins this year instead of the Bills for 2 years.
- Fred Davis proved to his teammates and coaches that Washington is where he wants to play.
- Fred Davis proved to the Redskins fans that he wants to suit up in the burgundy and gold.
- Fred Davis knows his best opportunity for individual and team success out of his options is with the reigning NFC East champion Washington Redskins with young playmaking quarterback Robert Griffin III.
- Fred Davis proved that money would not play into his decision of where to play (for this year).
That last point sticks out. Fred Davis knows that if he plays well this year and stays out of trouble and continues to prove himself a professional, he will get the payday he wants next offseason. The Redskins are slated to have roughly $30M give or take $5M next offseason to spend on contracts, so Fred Davis will be able to make that money here, and the Redskins likely would be willing to pay him more than anyone else would.
So while Davis didn’t really let money play into his decision this year, Drew Rosenhaus surely let Fred Davis know what he could expect financially next year if he performs and stays on the straight & narrow.
But what fans can rejoice in, is having one of the biggest threats to opposing defenses back on the field for Robert Griffin III’s second year, bringing a guy who can command extra attention every play in order to help wide receivers on the outside. Fred’s athleticism and size creates a mismatch against most linebackers and safeties in the league, allowing the Redskins to take full advantage of the matchups they have each and every week.
Last season, Fred Davis was rumored to not have a very strong rapport with Robert Griffin III based on what fans and media saw at open practices. The duo proved immediately against the Saints in week one that they not only had a rapport, but they had chemistry, communication, and trust as well. Davis is very good at running routes, but more importantly, he runs after routes, and also knows how to find soft spots when the play breaks down in the pocket and Griffin has to scramble. Davis displayed this several times before injuring his Achilles.
So Redskins fans, welcome back Fred Davis!