Redskins Active Despite Cap Limitations
When the NFL came down with the ruling late Monday that the Redskins would be stripped of $36 million in salary cap space, everyone wondered how it would alter their plans heading into free agency. Shortly after the clock struck 4 p.m., Washington showed how.
The Redskins were planning on approaching free agency with the most salary cap room they have had in years. Instead, the NFL reportedly forced them to use at least $18 million of the $36 million cap penalty for this year's free agency period.
That did not deter the team from addressing needs early on. First, former Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Pierre Garcon announced on his Facebook page that he had chosen to sign with the Redskins. Following that move, it was reported that there was an agreement with former San Francisco 49ers wide receiver and local product Joshua Morgan.
Then the Redskins made the first move in addressing their own free agents by retaining Adam Carriker to a four-year, $20 million deal. That contract can be voided after one year and can only be voided by Carriker himself. Retaining Carriker solidifies the defensive line, which many believe is the strongest unit on the team.
As dusk was approaching, word broke that former Denver Broncos wide receiver Eddie Royal had agreed to a deal with the Redskins but that news was put to rest when it was reported that some late suitors had approached Royal and halted a deal with Washington. He is still unsigned but the Redskins appear to be one of the favorites.
Like Morgan, Royal played at Virginia Tech and is another local product. Selected by current Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan in the second round of the 2008 draft, Royal put up career numbers that season with 91 catches for 980 yards, five touchdowns and an average of 26.1 yards per kickoff return.
While the Redskins haven't signed any free agents as of 3:00 p.m. Wednesday, there have been moves throughout the league that affected the Redskins plans. Players who the team had reported interest in, that opted to sign elsewhere; like Quarterback Kyle Orton (Dallas), cornerback Eric Wright (Tampa Bay), and John Carlson (Minnesota).
According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Redskins are supposed to meet with former Patriots and Bears safety Brandon Meriweather today. The Redskins plan to address cornerback by meeting with former New York Giants cornerback Aaron Ross on Friday according to John Keim of the Washington Examiner. Rich Campbell of the Washington Times hears that the Redskins are 'in play' for former Baltimore Ravens guard Ben Grubbs but does not know how much effort the Redskins will put into acquiring him.
On the homefront, there is no news developing regarding linebacker London Fletcher but cornerback Josh Wilson and Adam Carriker have reached out to him on Twitter to encourage him to come back. Despite his age, losing Fletcher would be a big blow to the defense and the team as a whole. Another key free agent, safety LaRon Landry, has reportedly received interest from the New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles, Detroit Lions and New England Patriots. His return appears unlikely.
This article was released on 2012-03-14.
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