The Washington Redskins handed Brandon Lloyd his walking papers today two years after giving up third- and fourth-round draft picks for the right to sign him to a contract that had $10 million in guaranteed money.
The trade and signing turned out to be a very costly mistake. Lloyd caught 25 passes for the Redskins. That's $400,000 per catch. In terms of the draft pick value chart, each catch cost the Redskins the equivalent of a late seventh-round pick (a third and a fourth equal about 190 points, divided by the 25 catches is 7.6, the point value of the 19th pick of the fourth round).
You can't do a similar calculation to figure out how much each touchdown catch cost the Redskins as it is mathematically impossible to divide by zero.
As discussed in this space last week, the Redskins can choose to pay for their mistake in full now or put part of it on credit and spread some of the pain into 2009. If they chose to make him a straight release, they will take a net hit of $2.9 million this season. If they designated him as a post-June 1 cut they will eat a $5.4 million dead cap number next year while gaining $2.4 million of space on the first of June. There was no immediate word as to which poison the Redskins picked.
Lloyd had a part-time career as a rapper, something that he talked about extensively during his first months with a team. He had a publicist who was fond of send emails to the Redskins' beat reporters talking about Lloyd's recording career and of his accomplishments on the field. Those communications in the latter category were few, far between, and very brief.
The stream of communication did not endear him to the beat writers, who turned on him early. Even without the publicist's hype there would have been good reason for criticism. Lloyd wasn't exactly a locker room cancer. Being a cancer actually requires some effort, some work on the part of the perpetrator. Brand Lloyd just kind of cruised along at about three-quarters speed both on and off the field.
And it was not going full speed that ultimately cost him his job with the Redskins. Joe Gibbs and Al Saunders seemed to be willing to give him a mulligan for a spotty 2006 season and he was scheduled to have a major role in the offense in '07. On the first play of the fourth quarter of the season opener against Miami, Jason Campbell threw a deep pass intended for Lloyd in the end zone. The receiver made a half hearted effort at the ball and it was picked off by Miami seven yards deep in the end zone. Lloyd was even less interested in making the tackle than he was in making the catch and the defender scampered 29 yards to the 22.
That was it. Lloyd was buried on the depth chart the rest of the year before breaking his collarbone around midseason and winding up on injured reserve.
Free agent pass rusher Pernell McPhee visited the Redskins on Monday, and by Tuesday night a report emerged that Washington offered the veteran outside linebacker a contract.
Last week, Trent Murphy signed with the Buffalo Bills and things remain uncertain between the Redskins and Junior Galette. That means the organization has a need for an edge rushing linebacker, and that's exactly the role McPhee can play.
A 29-year-old that played the last three seasons with the Bears, McPhee posted 14 sacks while in Chicago. Prior to his time with the Bears, McPhee was a solid contributor on some good Ravens teams.
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His best season in Baltimore came in 2014 when he posted 7.5 sacks. That's also the last season McPhee played a full 16 game schedule. He's missed 12 games over the last three years in Chicago.
McPhee could provide the Redskins with solid veteran depth at outside linebacker, and he's also considered a plus defender against the run. With Ryan Kerrigan and Preston Smith cemented as the starting outside linebackers, if signed, McPhee would pair up with Ryan Anderson on Washington's second unit. At 6-foot-2 and 275 lbs., McPhee carries more weight on his frame than either Kerrigan or Smith.
Pro Football Focus gave McPhee a strong grade for the 2017 season. He notched a +11.5 and ranked 13th out of 46 outside linebackers graded. For comparison, Broncos star Von Miller ranked 1st at +57, Kerrigan ranked 8th at +22.9 and Galette ranked 10th at +16.2.
It's unclear what a move for McPhee would mean between the Redskins and Galette, but it's hard to imagine it helps.
Free agent Johnathan Hankins also visited Washington on Monday, and while he plays an interior defensive line position different from McPhee, it's also unclear what this offer would do to any negotiations between the Redskins and Hankins.
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It looks like Ryant Grant has found his new home, again.
After a failed physical with the Ravens, James Jones of NFL Network reports Grant plans to sign with the Colts.
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Grant originally agreed to a four-year, $29 million deal with the Ravens, before the team pulled the offer citing an ankle injury that dated to the Redskins' final regular-season game, according to reports.
Baltimore eventually signed Michael Crabtree to a three-year deal, while Grant had visits with the Colts and Raiders.
His agent, Rocky Arceneaux, says Grant has been working out, running routes, and his ankle had been cleared by Dr. Robert Anderson in a second opinion.
In 2017 with the Redskins, he appeared in all 16 games, with 45 receptions for 573 yards and four touchdowns.
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